Back-to-school has changed a lot over the past few years, especially for college students. Gone are the days of a notepad and a pencil, now it’s a tablet and stylus. Incoming freshmen and their parents will soon be flocking to the stores for the tax-free weekend to stock up on all the back-to-school necessities (and probably a lot of unnecessary stuff too), in hopes of getting the year off to a great start. Technology for college is essential.
In an effort to help point you in the right direction, we’ve put together a list of technology for college necessities for the classroom and the dorm room. In part one, we’ll cover the classroom, in part two, we’ll cover the dorm. You can also check out our post about essential tech accessories for back-to-school.
Choose the Right Laptop
Laptops can set you back a pretty penny, but having the right one can make all the difference. There are a lot of great back-to-school deals on laptops this time of year. There are so many different types of laptops and notebooks on the market, it’s hard to know where to start. Honestly, the best laptop is going to depend on what your student is going to be doing.
Macs and the Microsoft Surface line are really great creative computers. They have incredible displays and bigger processors, which mean they work faster, and more memory, but they’re expensive. If your student is going into an art or visually- oriented program, you might look at spending your technology for college money for one of these.
For your basic word processing, internet researching, Facebooking machine, you should look to something more like a Chromebook. You can get Chromebooks for a few hundred bucks, and they’ll help your student with their basic school needs, but these are pretty basic computers. If you use Google Docs, which is a great FREE alternative to Microsoft Office, it’s all based online so it doesn’t eat up storage on the computer.
A Sturdy Smartphone is an Essential
A smartphone is a necessary technology for college. This is a tricky subject. You’ve got your die-hard Apple people and your die-hard Android people, and they just don’t agree. Here’s the thing though, aside from a few things, they’re very similar. Android and Apple phones come in 32 and 64GB models. Most phones these days have a pretty decent camera, and you can find great apps for every phone.
If your student will be using a Mac computer, consider the seamless sharing that comes with the Apple account. All of the Apple products sync with one another, and this allows access to notes, pictures, videos, apps, and more. You can have the same seamless features on Androids and PCs, with Google apps. It really comes down to personal preference.
Best advice would be: Make sure you’re buying a water and shock-resistant phone. College kids can make questionable choices, and phones are expensive. In part 2 of this post, we’ll talk about protecting your investment in technology for college.
A Tablet is an Essential
As much as people argue about which brand is better when it comes to phones and computers, the general consensus is that the iPad has the market on tablets. iPads are the more expensive option. If you’re looking for a less expensive alternative for your technology for college, there are a few good choices.
For around $100, you can get an Amazon Fire or an LG G Pad. You’ll have access to apps available in the Amazon App Store and Google Play Store. With the Google Suite installed, you’ll have access to the seamless experience much like what you’d get with Apple.
Add OneSupport to Your Technology for College Shopping List
One more thing to add to your technology for college shopping list is OneSupport. By equipping your student with OneSupport, you’ll be giving them 100% U.S.-based tech support that’s available 24/7. You can’t go with them when they go off to college, but OneSupport is like having a tech guru there!
When you need tech support with your technology for college, please call OneSupport.com at 844-818-3415, or live chat with one of our agents. OneSupport is always just a call or a click away.
Thanks to our special contributor, Chris Eldridge.