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RadioShack Offering Online CE Courses

RadioShack will offer consumers free how-to courses on a host of consumer electronics products and their use beginning this month.

The classes, developed by RadioShack and Powered, an Austin, Texas-based provider of online consumer education programs, will be moderated and taught by technology experts including music and video producer Cisco Gilliland, technical writer Robin Allen, and photographer Marc Mantha. Topics will include:

  • Choosing the right computer;
  • Buying and setting up an HDTV;
  • Techniques in digital photography;
  • A primer on satellite radio;
  • The mobile office;
  • Digital and wireless accessories;
  • Selecting the ultimate home theater; and
  • Digital music.

The classes will be offered on RadioShack’s new Learning Center site (http://learning on a limited first-come, first-served basis, and will have staggered start and end dates throughout October and November. Courses will generally run for two to four weeks with a varying number of lessons, depending on the complexity of the topic. Once posted, the lesson will remain available 24/7 until two weeks after the course concludes. Suggested course materials will include products that are available for sale at

According to Cara Kinzey, the retailer’s senior VP of information technologies, the self-paced online courses will allow customers to attain a level of comfort with often daunting product categories. “Our goal with the RadioShack Learning Center is to help satisfy our customers’ thirst for more in-depth knowledge about new technologies and translate that into a positive in-store or online experience,” she said.

Dave Ellett, chairman/CEO of Powered, added, “Consumer electronics products are converging now more than ever, and retailers who best educate their customers on how to make the most of new technologies are the ones who will build brand loyalty and sell more products.”

Powered provides online educational content for a number of leading CE companies including Gateway, HP and Sony.