Tablet and Smartphone accessories

It’s one thing to get a tablet or smart phone for Christmas but getting one of these accessories will turn that smartphone or tablet into a completely new device. Here are some accessories that are my favorite things that are sure to be a hit with those on your holiday list.  While a gift card to the Apple iTunes store, Google Play store (Android Phones) or the Microsoft Windows app store (Windows phones and tablets) can buy useful apps, these accessories can raise a tablet or phone’s capabilities to a whole new level.

Give the writer a portable keyboard case. A keyboard case can turn a tablet into a laptop. Writing a story, report, or email is slow and difficult when using a tablet’s touchscreen keyboard. A tablet keyboard case adds protection along with laptop-level productivity. The tablet is propped up and the experience is much like using a small laptop. Mechanical keys feel most like a real keyboard.Two cases to consider are the ZaggFolio and the Belkin Ultimate. (In fact, I am using the Zagg keyboard to write this blog).

Give the artist a stylus. The perfect gift for an artist is a touchscreen stylus. Better than “finger painting” a stylus can turn a tablet into a sketchpad, or canvas. The Sensu brush stylus works with a touchscreen tablet with soft bristles that give the feel and control of painting. GoSmart stylus pens are best to draw thin lines. The Pogo Connect by Ten 1 Design is a pressure sensitive stylus that can create create wider lines and more “ink flow” when you press the pen harder against the touchscreen, or a finer line when using a light touch.

Give them a stereo. Adding a speaker can turn a tablet or smartphone into a personal stereo. A bluetooth stereo speaker fills the room with tunes that are saved to a tablet or smartphone or can stream music from online. Water resistant bluetooth speakers can be placed on a kitchen or bathroom counter, or next to the pool. The Shoqbox by Philips can withstand splashes and blast clear sound. A Voxx speaker looks great poolside or inside. Other models, carry a phone in a secret compartment to keep it out of the sand while listening at the beach. For quality sound, consider the Cambridge Audio Minx Air which works with any tablet or smartphone using bluetooth or is AirPlay capable for use with iPhones, iPads, and iPods.

When the kids want to share music, but you don’t want to be disturbed by music blasting from speakers, the Belkin Rockstar can come to the rescue.  This little accessory lets five people plug in their headphones to share the music.

Give them a home control system. Turn a smartphone into a home remote control. Belkin’s WeMo system can control any lamp or device in the home using simple plug-in adapter and the free WeMo app. The Wemo Motion will turn on lights or the TV as you walk into a room. Lights can also be set to turn on and off at designated times. The WeMo app can also be used to turn on/off a light, video game console or device whenever you want from anywhere you have Internet access.  The WeMo Insight shows how much electricity is being used by the connected device along with the monthly estimated cost.

Barb Gonzalez ~ The Simple Tech Guru

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