Real Men – and Women – Have AccessoriesPosted on May 2, 2014 by
Congratulations. You’ve got a new tablet computer! Whether it’s an iPad or Windows or Android – and I’m an iPad man, myself – buying a new tablet is a lot like having a baby: You’re going to want to buy some stuff to go with it. And boy, is there a lot of stuff to choose from! But it’s easy to get overwhelmed, both by the variety and by the potential cost. Where is your money best spent? Today I’ll talk about some basic extras you’re going to need.
You probably bought your new device at an electronics megastore, or perhaps online. You can get a lot of accessories from the same place. Many of them will be cheaper on eBay, but you’re going to want to play with your new tablet right away, and it needs some immediate protection. That’s reason enough to go ahead and buy a couple items right then and there, even if it means paying more.
First, you’ll want a screen protector, because you’ll be messing with that screen a lot, and it’s going to get scratched. Don’t choke at the price. It may well be military grade. Okay, so you’re not in the military, but what the heck, it couldn’t hurt. Be careful putting this thing on. It takes a steady hand and some patience to get the bubbles out.
The second thing you’ll need is a case. These, too, are relatively expensive if you pay retail, but remember: this is an investment in your business. It’s an investment in YOU. Be sure the case is designed to fit your particular brand and model, and that it has protection for both the front and the back of the device. You would think that would be a given, but a lot of cases only protect one side or the other. Think carefully about the features you want – they may not be as practical as you think. For example, you can get cases with built-in keyboards, which is great for some people. But it does add a significant amount of weight, and your little computer needs to be light enough to take it with you everywhere.
Third, get yourself a stylus. You don’t need it for everything, but you’ll be limited to a few applications until you have one. The stylus has come a long way since that little plastic stick you used with your first smartphone. The new ones are shaped and weighted like pens for ease of use. In fact, some of them actually have built-in pens – a feature I really like. The least expensive kind of stylus has a soft rubber tip. It’s a lot like writing in crayon: thick and clunky. It works in a pinch, though, and it’s a good idea to have some cheap spares – a good thing to purchase on eBay. But for everyday use, think about getting an Adonit Jot Pro. It has a fine point with a little clear disk attached. It feels and writes just like a pen, and it’s well worth the extra money.
Finally, make sure you have all the right cables and rechargers you’re going to need. These items may have come with your device, but they’re not always included and you’ve got to have them right away. When you’ve got one of everything, I recommend that you buy additional chargers and cords – cheap – on eBay. Then, keep spares in your car, your home, and your office just in case of an emergency.
Once you have these four things – the screen protector, the case, the stylus, and recharger – you’ll be ready to play with – I mean, train on – your new tablet.
Of course, I haven’t even scratched the surface when it comes to computer accessories. Next month, I’ll tell you about some cool items for your smartphone.
Just one more thing. Remember how I said that getting a tablet is like having a baby? Well, my wife has informed me that getting a new iPad is nothing like giving birth. I guess I’m going to have to trust her on that one. But hey, what’s a little poetic license?