Don’t Break the Bank on Back-to-School Tech
Back-to-school shopping can be expensive: from clothes to school supplies, it can really add up for parents. And let’s face it, as parents we all have a budget to stick to. So how do you stay within your budget when your child needs new tech items for back-to-school? Here are a few ways you can save on your kid’s back-to-school tech this year and, hopefully, stay within your budget:
Laptops are essential for many students these days, but they can be a pricy investment for parents. In addition to being expensive, many devices become outdated quickly. Luckily, affordable laptop options have become available in recent years. For students, I recommend Chromebooks, which use the Chrome OS operating system and have reduced hard drive space. With cloud services and online applications, the reduced hard drive space won’t slow students down and the price tag on these devices won’t break the bank. In fact, Chromebooks are such a great option for students that many schools recommend them as part of their BYOD, or Bring Your Own Device, programs. For this year’s hottest Chromebooks, check out last week’s blog post.
As kids become more independent having a means to stay in touch with them becomes a priority. This makes smartphones essential for older students, such as those in middle and high school. Older students also benefit from access to search engines and social networks. All that being said, these devices are expensive! Not only is there the cost of the device to consider, but smartphone and data plans can also be pricy and often lock you into a two-year term. If you’re in the market for a smartphone for your kid this year, an affordable unlocked Android device is the perfect choice. These devices offer all the smartphone functionality without costing you a fortune or locking you into a phone contract. With an unlocked phone, you can shop around and find the best phone plan and you’re free to switch providers anytime.
Tablets provide powerful computing in a slim, sleek form factor, making them perfect for students on the go. With a wide range of models and price points available, a tablet definitely doesn’t need to break the bank. For example, the Acer Iconia line of tablets offer a great screen size and strong performance at an affordable price.
The cost of hardware, such as laptops and tablets, is definitely high but parents often don’t factor in the cost of software for students heading back to school. From antivirus to productivity, students need a variety of software to excel at their studies. A lot of this software comes at a hefty price. Luckily, student plans are available to help you keep costs in check at back-to-school time. For example, Microsoft Office 365 Home offers five licenses for $99.00 per year. For students in more creative fields, Adobe offers up to 60% off on Creative Cloud subscriptions. Finally, students can enjoy Apple Music subscriptions for just $4.99 per month.