Mario’s “Must Haves” For Back To School with Technology Expert, Mario Armstrong

Believe it or not, back to school season is nearly officially here. If you’re headed back to the classroom or your children are, you’ve come to the right place! Emmy award winning technology and lifestyle expert, Mario Armstrong was kind enough to join me once again, this time to chat about the must haves every student needs just in time to hit the books in the coming weeks!




Candace Rose: What are the top tech must haves every student needs for back to school?

Mario Armstrong: “I have four great tech must haves. People get overwhelmed and confused.

The first one is laptop or tablet, so I say laptop first. You want something that’s thin and lightweight. This Samsung Ativ Book 9 Lite version (please see video above) is only three and a half pounds, very thin, super fast and full day battery life. It’s also Windows, so it’s touch and it also has some cool Samsung technology in it called side sync. If you’re working on your computer, but then want to work on your phone you can move right on over and keep on going really easily. When you’re back to school, you might be juggling more than one thing like your career and work and your education, so it’s really smooth.


Browsing the web is the biggest thing a lot of people do, whether it’s looking for educational resources or doing book reports or doing research or just looking at educational videos, my favorite browser for that is Firefox. Firefox is free to download, made by Mozilla which is a non-profit organization. But what’s really cool about it for back to school is number one it works easily across all types of devices; number two if you pull up research and have a lot of tabs open on your screen, but you’re done working on your laptop and later you want to pick up your phone and pick up where you left off…you’ll have all of those pages and all of those tabs right there so you’re totally synched no matter what device you’re using and when you’re using Firefox Sync. Plus they have some customizable add-ons that can make the browser even safer from inappropriate content as well as helping you with back to school apps and add-ons that can help you with note taking.



Kids want something, so I had to do something for the little ones, so for the ages three to nine, you want something that’s durable and they want their own tablet that can run apps so I picked out the Learning App Tablet, by VTech, it’s called InnoTab3S. It’s less than $100 and that’s a great price point, it’s durable, has a rechargeable battery, an MP3 player, a camera, and most of all it comes with apps- 20 of them already that are educational and entertaining. But they have their own app store called the Learning Lodge where you can download more apps to the device and there’s also a really cool feature called Kid Connect where they can connect the device to WIFI and then send their parent a message or receive one right from their device.



Not everybody knows exactly what they want or what they need to get someone, and I say gift certificates are boring. Get them something that’s cooler than that, this is a greeting card and a gift certificate all in one. So how this works is you go to, type in your personalized message, pick the graphics you want, choose the amount that you want to give them and the store where they can redeem this and print it out from your own printer, and you haven’t even left the house.”

Candace Rose: Well, thank you so much, Mario. Where can we go for more information?

Mario Armstrong: “For more info on everything I’ve shown here, it’s”


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