Summer is coming to an end and for students all around it signals the beginning of the school year. And for some, it might be a big change as they head off to be a freshman in college. No matter what grade you are entering, the team at NJTechReviews has outlined the best gadgets, gizmos, and things all around for the upcoming school year.

Dorm Room

Echo and Echo Dot

Personal assistants are everywhere and Amazon has a very affordable one. The Echo Dot can connect out to a Bluetooth speaker via an auxiliary cable for better sound. Plus it will keep getting better through Alexa skill updates. The Echo Dot is available for $49.99.

 

Canary

If you want home monitoring solution for your dorm room, look no further than the Canary. It is quite easy to set up and the application is pretty sweet. The video feed has less lag than most other cams and it has a loud siren. The Canary is available for $169.99.

IKEA TRÅDFRI

IKEA’s TRÅDFRI smart lighting system is an affordable one. And even better it works through a gateway which should work with a dedicated ethernet port on a college network. It will also work with Apple HomeKit and Amazon Alexa’s ecosystem.

 

Accessories

My Passport Ultra

Data loss sucks, there is no other way to describe it. And Western Digital is a leader in terms of storage and helping for the quest with keep data safe. At under $60 you cannot beat the My Passport Ultra external drive that is 1TB in size. The 1TB My Passport Ultra is available for $56.99.

 

Cruzer Dial USB Flash Drive

There will come a time when you need to quickly export an essay or a power point, and you will not be able to find a flash drive. And since they have been originally marketed, prices have come down and SanDisk brings some great value. The SanDisk Cruzer Dial USB Flash Drive is available for $12.99.

 

iXpand Flash Drive

The biggest issue with any iPhone would have to be the storage, as 32GB is never enough. SanDisk’s iXpand line allows you to store photos, music, movies, and general files on a flash storage drive with both a USB and Lightning port. There is even an easy to use iXpand application for the iPhone that will let you what is being stored. The SanDisk iXpand Flash Drive starts at $39.99.

Carnaby Esquire Folio Case

Incipio’s Esquire Series has long been a fan favorite accessory line and their latest for the 10.5-inch iPad Pro is an epic case. It comes in two colors, that go with either the Space Gray, Silver, or Gold variant. It can be propped up for viewing a TV show and will provide protection. You can grab the Carnaby Esquire Folio Case for iPad Pro from Incipio at $59.99.

HERO Session

The entry level GoPro HERO Session comes in at $149.99 and is a perfect way to capture the epic moments while away at school. It records at 1440 pixels and is super simple to use. You can get the HERO Session for $149.99.

 

Phones

iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus

Apple’s current latest and greatest would be the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus! And they are pretty stellar devices coming in Jet Black, Matte Black, Silver, Gold, Rose Gold, and PRODUCT(RED). The 7 Plus features a dual camera setup on the back which allows for the epic depth effect. While the base iPhone 7 features a stellar  4.7-inch Retina display. You can learn about the 7 and 7 Plus from Apple here.

Pixel and Pixel XL

Google said goodbye to the Nexus brand last Fall and introduced the Pixel–the first smartphone truly made by the company. It is still a favorite device and features an epically clean version of Android with a fast processor and full USB-C support. The Google Pixel starts at $672.99.

Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus

Samsung’s first test since the Note 7 debacle was the Galaxy S8 and Galaxy S8 Plus, both featuring the edge-to-edge Infinity Display with a unique ratio. They look very sleek and are generally discounted making them ideal for the college student budget. The Samsung Galaxy S8 starts at $574.99.

Tablets

Galaxy Tab Pro S

 This year’s entertainment and productivity tablet from Samsung is the Tab S3 and its design mimics that the of the Galaxy S smartphone series. It comes with an S Pen out of the box and a very sharp display. The Galaxy Tab S3 starts at $597.99.

 

iPad Pro

Unveiled at WWDC 2017, the new iPad Pro lineup is ideal for the college student. With the new ProMotion display, taking notes on the 10.5-inch or 12.9-inch with an Apple Pencil is an ideal experience. You can learn more about the iPad Pro lineup here.

 

Entertainment

Hulu

Hulu has a perfect deal for students, with two plans one at $7.99 and the other at $11.99 a month. Both of these give you access to over 3,000 titles including Hulu Original content. Both of these offer a one-month free trial, but the $11.99 option gives you no commercials. You can learn more about Hulu here.

 

Sling TV

Sling TV was the original cord-cutting solution and if there is one thing about college, their TV options are not the best. Their services are now “A La Carte” and start at just $20 a month–From there you can add some packages. Plus they offer applications for almost every device and a Cloud DVR offering. You can learn more about Sling TV here.

 

Computing

MacBook Pro with TouchBar

It was a landmark device when it was unveiled last year, and the new MacBook Pro with TouchBar has only gotten better. The new touchscreen function row creates a unique experience that allows for more productivity. And with a thin design and a new gray color, it will look pretty darn good on campus. You can learn more about the MacBook Pro lineup here.

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