Back to school shopping can be stressful, especially when it comes to searching for the perfect laptop, tablet and smartphone. With technology constantly evolving, renowned tech journalist Andrea Smith was kind enough to join me for an interview this morning to dish on the top five tech must haves for students of all ages heading back to school.
Candace Rose: What’s new in laptops and smartphones for back to school?
Andrea Smith: “I really like this trend of convertible PCs like the Toshiba Satellite Radius 15 4K Ultra HD Edition. This is thin, it’s lightweight and it’s the first two-in-one to offer 4K Ultra HD resolution. This is great for students in school because you start out in laptop mode getting your homework done, and then you can rotate it a full 360 degrees to tablet mode for kicking back and watching movies. It’s also built for Windows 10 and it’s got an HD webcam and dual mics for voice apps like Skype and Cortana.
Also for people searching for a new smartphone for back to school, T-Mobile has a $15 iPhone offer. You can upgrade now for no money down, $15 a month when you trade in any phone. It’s the best industry price on an iPhone 6 right now. Listen, for data hoggers in the family T-Mobile’s family plan is for you. A family of four gets 10 gigabytes of 4G LTE data each for $30 a line – no sharing required.”
Candace Rose: What do you suggest for protecting and storing data?
Andrea Smith: “That’s a really good question – super important because students are using open wifi on campuses, kids are sharing files. You really want to protect that personal information and data – use Symantec’s Norton Security. One subscription protects up to 10 devices. It’s really easy to install and manage. It’s not just antivirus but it also protects against new and emerging threats. I like that it has parental controls and an optional backup feature.
Also for data, we need to be connected all the time right? Students walking across campus can use the SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick. It’s a wireless flash drive, so you can access your data wherever you are – transfer your files to it, get content off of it. In fact, three devices can connect at one time, access content and even stream in HD video. It’s got capacities up to 128 gigabytes and it plugs into a computer’s USB port just like a regular flash drive.”
Candace Rose: Is there anything new for younger students?
Andrea Smith: “What better way to teach kids how to code than through play, right? Dash & Dot are award winning programmable robots. Not only are they cute and adorable, kids use a tablet and free apps like Blockly which is updated every week with new content to program them. As they see the robots respond, they can understand how they can affect change. Teachers are loving this too. It’s used in over 500 schools nationwide, and I just can’t believe that kids as young as five are learning to code using these robots.”
Candace Rose: Well, thank you so much as always, Andrea! Where can we go for more information?
Andrea Smith: “For more information on everything we talked about, head over to KillerApps.tv.”