Gadgets for Heading Back to School

Published On August 6, 2014 | Electronics

Summer is winding down and back-to-school mania is gearing up, which means shopping for all of those school year essentials. For academics heading into middle school, high school, or college, we’ve got the full round-up of can’t-miss gadgets.

Sunrise Alarm Clock

Getting up for school is often the hardest part of the day, so invest in an alarm clock that you’re excited to wake up to. Light-based alarms feature a lamp that gradually gets brighter to mimic the sunrise. You can also sync the glow with a portable music player for a calming introduction to the school day.

High-Tech Backpack

Tech-laden students need the right luggage, and a backpack specially designed to fit a laptop, tablet, phone, and the accompanying slew of cords is a necessity. Look for backpacks that have a place for all of the latest technology, reinforced pockets for laptops, comfortable shoulder padding, and adjustable chest and waist straps to distribute heavy loads.

Solar backpacks harvest energy to charge your gadgets on the go, and some carrying cases even come equipped with built-in speakers, allowing you to throw a little dance party for classmates at the end of a long day.

Locker Charging Station

When you’re heavily reliant on technology for doing school work, taking notes, and staying connected, you’ll want to make sure you’re running on full for the next class. The newest portable charging stations are slim and compact, but feature powerful lithium ion batteries with multiple USB ports, allowing you to power up before the next bell. Sleek portable charger cases come with cord organization systems and can be easily stashed away in your locker.

Smart Pen

Gone are the days of furiously scribbling away with a No. 2 pencil on a spiral notebook. The newest smart pens are possibly the coolest gadgets around for those classes that require heavy note-taking. They not only pair with custom notepaper that converts your handwriting into a digital form, but they come with a nifty voice recorder that pick up your teacher’s lectures in case there’s anything you miss.

Ultra-Thin Laptop

Shuttling a laptop from class to class sounds great in theory, but as the day wears on, the average laptop can start to feel like a load of bricks. Instead, opt for a thinner, lighter model. Some of the lightest laptops on the market weigh less than 3 lbs. and include everything those heavier models have to offer. Or, try a laptop-tablet hybrid, which are getting better by the year, and now offer full word processing capabilities and an extended range of apps.

Laptop Lock

When doing homework in a library, café, or pretty much any public place, safeguard your device against theft. Laptop locks are now smaller and more durable than ever, designed to keep your gadget, and more importantly, that precious paper you’ve just written, safe while you grab a snack or head to the bathroom.

Each school year brings new tests, work, and challenges, but with the right gear, you’re set up for success from day one. And while none of these gadgets can guarantee you’ll ace every test, you sure will look cool as you head back to school.

– By Jennifer Thayer

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