What The Tech: Back To Campus Gadgets – WCCB Charlotte
CHARLOTTE, N.C. — College students will head off to college soon, some for the first time. You’ll find back-to-campus sales on items such as laptops, bed linens, and things to decorate a dorm room or apartment. There are a few tech gadgets that may not have come to mind but they’re things most any college student or anyone moving out on their own can use.
Standing desks became popular a few years ago when it finally dawned on people that sitting ina computer chair for hours at a time isn’t the most healthy way to work. Flexispot is a company that makes a number of desks that can go from a sitting position to standing in a few seconds. Flexispot desks have a very simple design that looks smart in any home, bedroom, office, or apartment. The desks use hydraulics to raise and lower the desktop by extending or shortening the legs. To control the Flexispot desk you use push buttons on a control panel that sits just under the lip of the desk. You can set your favorite positions to move it to one of two heights or, control the height manually. The Flexidspot desk can rise to 48-inches for standing or down to just 22-inches from the floor.
There’s also a USB port for charging a phone which comes in handy. Flexispot desks come in several colors and shapes.
I’ve never seen a room with enough electrical outlets, especially in older dorms and apartments. With phones, tablets, computers, TVs, and gaming systems, students will definitely need more outlets. Let’s face it though, standard power strips are ugly and look terrible on a desktop. There are new power strips available that look good and are highly functional. Anker makes an assortment of desktop power strips that look nothing like the power strips you’ve seen before. They have 3 standard electrical outlets, 2 standard USB ports, and a USB-C port.
Students mostly use laptops because they can go from class to class and back to the dorm or apartment. They can also be a real pain in the neck from looking down at the screen all day. There are laptop stands that pack up small enough for a backpack that, unfolded, will hold the laptop at eye level. It’s especially helpful for anyone doing many Zoom or video conferencing.
One note about the laptop stands, you’ll certainly want to get a Bluetooth keyboard to pair with the laptop. Otherwise, you’ll be reaching up to type. Bluetooth keyboards are available from several companies. Logitech wireless keyboards are capable of connecting to three devices over Bluetooth so it can be used for typing on smartphones and tablets.
Some professors still require work to be turned in on paper which will send most students to the campus library or to an office supply store to print out their work. A wireless printer may save the day for any late night/last-minute work. Wireless printers are not expensive. Get the smallest printer that you can find that also connects to WiFi so the student can print from anywhere using cloud storage.
For their desk, an Amazon Alexa device can be a handy tool but my choice would be a Google Nest Hub. They’re similar to the Alexa Echo Show but since it’s from Google, searching the internet is much better and more accurate. Students can set an alarm by saying “OK Google, wake me up at 6 AM”. …….