JBidWatcher is a free portable program for Windows, Mac OS X and Linux to snipe, bid and monitor auctions on the eBay marketplace.
The eBay auction platform -- or eBay marketplace as eBay likes to be called in these days -- is still the most popular online auction system despite its decline from a friendly neighborhood auction site to a site driven by commercial auctions. If users think online auctions they tend to think eBay.
Auctions can be monitored on the eBay website easily with the disadvantage that changes are only reported to the user per email sporadically, or after logging in to the eBay site. Software programs that monitor eBay auctions offer the advantage that the information is available in real-time on the computer desktop without having to access the eBay website.
This gives a user more control over auctions and the bidding process. JBidWatcher was recently mentioned in Joe's post about winning more eBay auctions. The program is available for multiple operating systems including Microsoft Windows, Linux and Apple Mac. Windows users can download a portable version or an installer.
Note: JBidwatcher requires Java installed on the system you want to run it on. Recent versions of the application ship with Java built-in on Windows and Mac, so that users on these platforms don't need to install Java separately to use the program. You may use Java Portable as an alternative if you don't want to install Java.
The software can be linked to an eBay account. This is not necessary for users who only want to monitor eBay auctions, but becomes important for the sniping module. Sniping refers to late bidding on eBay auctions which computers can do way better and more precisely than humans.
Auctions can be added by adding their auction number to the program. Another, comfortable, option is to perform searches on the selected eBay site -- all major eBay local sites are supported -- which will add items to the eBay item list automatically. A search for Google Phone or iPhone will for example return auctions or buy it now offers of that kind to the items list.
Items can then be sorted by time, price, time left, seller or name. Hovering the mouse over an item will display an auction image if one exists. The eBay monitor provides access to RSS feeds which come in handy in certain situations to check eBay auctions from smartphones or other mobile devices or to process the items further.
The settings of the software program are quite extensive and include options to enter eBay username and password, to switch to a locale eBay website, set the sniping time in seconds, and to specify the web browser that should be used to open the items on eBay. The only thing that seems to be missing is a statistic function that can be used to monitor item prices over time.
JBidwatcher is a sophisticated cross-platform software program to better manage eBay. You may use it to monitor auctions on the eBay marketplace, or link to an eBay account for bidding and sniping functionality.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.