Are you ready to get back to the school life this year some of the bare essential techs that every 21st-century student needs? Follow our guide to the best back-to-school gadgets and back-to-school Android apps that’ll make your school year a whole lot easier.

Whether you’re a freshman just filling in the space for the educational grinder, or an experienced senior looking to get back to the way of life, you need to right tech. With the education cycle closing in, the stores are going to be packed with back-to-store sales on clothing, stationery and especially gadgets.

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Apart from the best back-to-school gadgets to keep your educational year finely tuned, there are a bunch of amazing back-to-school Android apps for you to try out as well. So here’s the complete guide on some of the best devices, supported accessories, and standalone gadgets to get yourself before the school year begins.

Back-to-school gadgets for work

There is some tech that you get to treat yourself, and then there are the bare-essential gadgets that you need to keep up with your peers. A must-have for freshmen getting started with the college life this year, here are some of the work-oriented gadgets that you should look into.

1. Samsung Chromebook Pro

You can follow the sheeple and get yourself an overpriced MacBook for school this year, or try something new with a Chromebook. Admittedly, Chromebooks aren’t perfect for media-intensive and software-oriented work, but if you have a more web-centric use and primarily need a laptop for jotting down notes and regular study work, Samsung Chromebook Pro is a fine choice.

Priced conservatively as you would expect from the Chromebook, Samsung does step things up a notch. Despite being a web-based OS, Chrome OS has been evolved to work offline and gives you access to the millions of awesome apps on the Google Play Store. However, it’s the features like the tablet/notebook design with Samsung’s very own S-Pen stylus, QHD display, and rock-solid Intel Core m3 make it worth your money.

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2. Livescribe 3 smartpen

When you spend hours every day writing down notes from lectures and scramble to look for them during the finals, you’ll wish you had the Livescribe 3 smartpen then. Giving the centuries-old ordeal of notetaking a modern relief, Livescribe offers specialty books that when used alongside its smartpen, creates digital copies of your notes and saves them automatically.

The Bluetooth-powered smartpen connects to the Live scribe+ mobile app on your Android and iOS device, giving you access to your notes anytime, anywhere. Designed to be smarter than your average note-taking app, the back-to-school gadget such as Livescribe 3 smartpen comes with a built-in microphone to record audio during note-taking, which is actively synchronized with your writing.

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3. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite

If you’re one of those who believes books are obsolete, students who spend thousands of dollars each year on them beg to differ. Whether you’re looking to be a smart shopper by going for the e-book version of your study guides, or just an avid bibliophile who can’t carry around their books everywhere on the campus, Amazon Kindle Paperwhite might just be your holy grail.

Kindle Paperwhite will last you days, not hours on a single charge, you get a glare-free display for outdoor reading, Wi-Fi connectivity, explicit attention to typography with e-ink designed to be easy on your eyes. With direct connectivity to the Kindle app and unlimited access to the Kindle library for Prime members, you never fall short of content for your e-book reader.

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Back-to-school gadgets for entertainment

More than just a pathway to a degree or diploma, your school years are a journey to grow yourself in your own skin. No matter how much time you plan to dedicate to writing down notes and attending lectures, you’ll need these awesome gadgets to blow off some steam.

4. UE BOOM 2 Phantom

Unless you’re looking to make a style statement about how rich your dad is, you don’t need a premium Bluetooth speaker for your dorm or around the campus. UE BOOM 2 Phantom is the latest in quality audio systems that work natively with up to 8 different devices and a play range of up to 100 feet.

What makes this Bluetooth speaker right for the college setting is the fact that the device is waterproof and shockproof as well. Built to be compact and lightweight, the 15-hour battery life could’ve been better, but the UE BOOM 2 is hands-down among the best Bluetooth speakers that cost a fraction of what the big brands charge you.

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5. NVIDIA SHIELD TV

If the good-old Chromecast just isn’t cutting it for your dorm room, a back-to-school gadget such as the NVIDIA SHIELD TV is the ultimate media/gaming station you need. Now that the 2017 version is already out and rolling, you can enjoy the grand new features such as 4K HDR content streaming from services like YouTube, Netflix, Amazon Video, HBO and much more.

Apart from the Android TV support, you get the best of NVIDIA with GeForce Now – the exclusive apps section for PC-style gaming from your couch. Albeit the media player and gaming station is priced higher than most run of the mill devices, you’ll never need anything more than the NVIDIA SHIELD TV to keep yourself satiated.

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6. DJI Spark

Drones are all the rage right now and DJI is making drone photography and videography easily accessible with DJI Spark. Built for portability and highly durable that’s just perfect to take around the campus, it comes with a 2-axis stabilized gimbal camera with a 12-megapixel sensor to capture stunning still shots and full-HD videos at 30fps.

You won’t even need a bulky controller to move around the DJI Spark as it comes with the support of a 1.2-mile control range, thanks to the DJI GO App. The 31mph speed is great for some live videography and while the 16-minute air time is not ideal, its above average considering how compact and lightweight the drone itself is.

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Miscellaneous back-to-school gadgets

7. Fitbit Alta Fitness Tracker

School is about more than just being academically ahead – you’ll need a competent fitness regime and healthy lifestyle to keep you ahead in the game. You can always get your hands on one of the fancy Android Wear smart watches, but our pick is the Fitbit Alta to keep you focused on what’s important – staying healthy.

Alta comes built with the highly-acclaimed best features from Fitbit such as tracking steps, the calories you burn during your workout and smartphone notifications as well. The OLED tap display is ideally power-saving, so you won’t have to scramble to get the fitness tracker juiced every other day, while smartphone notifications will ensure that you don’t miss a full-fledged smartwatch too much.

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8. TYLT Powerbag

If you’re interested in a backpack that is a utility item rather than a style statement, you’re going to find one of the best back-to-school gadgets such as the TYLT Powerbag quite appealing. Available in Black and Polo Grey for a slender and sharp look, this deceivingly smart backpack comes with a 10,400 mAh power bank with triple-USB support and a built-in cable management system to keep your juiced up and tangle free.

Designed for the outdoors, you get multiple water-resistant deep zipper pockets with padded sleeves that can accommodate your laptop and a lot more. With an NFC tag built right into the shoulder strap on the TYLT Powerbag and TSA certification that makes traveling safe, it’s one of the more affordable “smart” backpacks on the market that you can get right now.

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9. Wearsafe

It’s always hard on parents to see their kid go off to college and being unaware of their whereabouts, but Wearsafemakes things easier. Designed to be pinned on your backpack or your keychain, this wearable peer to peer safety device is a GPS tracker, an audio recording device, and a quick smartphone unlocking chip – all at the same time.

Apart from being a location tracker, Wearsafe acts as a panic button for when you need to contact the emergency services or the people you trust just at the click of a button. While the recurring monthly charges for the dedicated chat service is not ideal, the features and safety services you get for the price of a cup of coffee each month sure makes it seem worth it.

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10. SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick 

To keep files and documents with you on the go, an external storage drive is a bare essential among back-to-school gadgets. However, the problem with OTG flash drives is that you can’t just find a universal one that works with all devices – until the SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick arrived.

Get SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick

Available in multiple storage variants to accommodate your data needs, the flash drive wireless connects to up to 3 devices to share content seamlessly. Compatible with both Android and iOS devices along with native support for desktop, you get the support of SanDisk Connect app to manage the data stored on your flash drive without accessing it physically.

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Best back-to-school Android apps

Back-to-school gadgets are great, but your school year is going to be pretty well-organized even if you have just your Android device on you. Whether you’re prepping for your first year of college or looking to improve your grades for the final high school year, here are some of the most innovative back-to-school Android apps.

1. Quizlet: Learn Languages & Vocab with Flashcards

 

Get Quizlet from the Google Play Store

There’s science behind the fact that quizzes help you get a better grasp on your learning material, which is the very reason Quizlet has been developed. Giving you the ability to create flashcards for an upcoming test with your own content or studying flash cards created by millions of users, the app supports 18 different languages and helps you learn a better way.

2. Photomath – Camera Calculator

 

Get Photomath from the Google Play Store

Maths can absolutely suck at times, and it doesn’t matter whether you’re in high school or university. Truly a deserving addition to the best back-to-school Android apps, Photomath changes the game with the point-and-shoot method of solving mathematical equations in an instant. With the step-by-step breakdown of complex equations, smart calculator built-in and handwriting recognition as well, logarithms, exponentials, fractions, and linear equations will never scare you again.

3. Monefy – Money Manager

 

Get Monefy from the Google Play Store

Being a broke student isn’t easy, especially if your money management skills are terrible. Which is why you need to install Monefy on your smartphone right now and make sure that you don’t end up with pocket change to last you the entire week. Keeping things simple with a user-friendly interface, you can create records right away with the lockscreen widget, select your budget mode and currency, get an instant report on your expenses and back it all up to the cloud.

4. School Planner

 

Get School Planner from the Google Play Store

Admit it, you’d be getting far better grades and be more athletically inclined if you had a better sense of organizing your day. Fortunately, you don’t have to be inherently organized if you have the School Planner app to be your personal organizer for you. Apart from being a calendar and time table viewer, School Planner helps you plan out every hour of your week for homework, tests, reminders, and more.

Which best back-to-school gadgets are going to be a part of your shopping list this year? Do you know any other outstanding back-to-school Android app that should be installed on every student’s phone? Be sure to hit us up in the comments section below or start a brand new conversation on the Updato Forum.

Which best back-to-school gadgets are going to be a part of your shopping list this year? Do you know any other outstanding back-to-school Android app that should be installed on every student’s phone? Be sure to hit us up in the comments section below or start a brand new conversation on the Updato Forum.

And as always, we end with an invite: don't be a stranger and join our community - be a part of the conversation where we help each other out, discuss the latest and greatest, and make the best of our tech.



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