The second semester is halfway over, and many seniors are well on their way when it comes to making plans for what they will do after high school. Many will go to college and with everything from books to assignments going digital, technology is a must. There are many options for purchasing technology for college, with many companies offering an education discount and some colleges offering options to rent technology. Here are some recommendations for technology to improve your college experience. These will be based on category. It is recommended that you check with the technology requirements at the college you plan to attend before making any sort of purchase. Each product can be clicked to view the product online.
Basic computing is a must in college, to both complete assignments and access online resources. There are many options ranging from budget friendly all the way to high performance laptops.
Microsoft Surface Go 3- The Surface Go 3 from Microsoft is a great budget friendly Windows Laptop for those who do not need a ton of performance. Starting at $399.99, the Surface Go 3 brings Windows to a 2-in-1 device with a detachable keyboard.
HP ENVY x360- The HP ENVY x360 is another excellent choice coming in $669.99. The ENVY x360 is a great 2-in-1 device featuring a bright and vivid screen that flips around and converts to a tablet. It has impressive performance and is featured on laptopmag.com as a great laptop for college.
Apple MacBook Air (M1, 2020+) - The Apple MacBook Air with the M1 processor introduced in 2020 is a smart choice for those who want a thin yet high performance device. Starting at $899 in Apple’s Education Store, the MacBook Air is a very thin device that outperforms some of the leading PC laptops of comparable size all while keeping battery life. I personally use this as my daily device at both school and home and I tend to get two days worth of battery. While the M1 processor in the MacBook Air is Powerful, some compatibility issues can happen and although those are being resolved quickly, it's best to make sure the programs you need will work.
Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio- The Surface Laptop Studio from Microsoft is another good option for those needing a high-performance PC laptop. The Surface Laptop Studio is a laptop with a screen that is capable of lying flat over the keyboard to be used to draw or take notes. It features the Surface Pen which functions like the Apple Pencil mentioned below. Starting at $1,399.00, this device is good for those who need a high-performance laptop and have a higher budget.
Note taking is especially important in college and for those like me, it can be hard to keep paper notes organized and typing notes is just not efficient. Luckily, there are options to get the best of both digital organization and handwriting notes. The Microsoft Surface Line mentioned above will also work for note taking!
Rocket Book Erasable Notebook Line- The Rocket Book Erasable Notebook Line is a fantastic way to digitally organize your notes while being able to physically write in a notebook. Simply write your notes and when you're done, just scan them to your mobile device using the Rocket Book app and then erase the notebook using a wet cloth.
iPad and Apple Pencil- An iPad and Apple Pencil is a terrific way to take digital notes while maintaining the benefits of handwriting. Pressure and tilt sensitivity makes note taking with the iPad and Apple Pencil feel just as normal as if you were taking paper notes with a flair pen. Personally, after using the iPad and Apple Pencil, there is no way I could go back to taking pen and paper notes. The battery life is still excellent on my two-year-old iPad and I can average up to three days of note taking before it needs a charge.
I hope this article helps anyone who needs help picking the right device for college. There are always more options out there, so I recommend you do your research before making a purchase.