MEGATech Guide to Back to School Gadget Gear Shopping Dylan Duarte August 20, 2013 Guides It's that time again! The time of the year that adults celebrate but kids absolutely dread: back-to-school time. However, students both young and old can take solace in all the fancy new gear they'll be equipped with while continuing their education. This is a new world and school gear has evolved from pencils and notebooks to tablets and smartphones, and while there's a certain downside to equipping an entire classroom with laptops, there's also countless undeniable benefits. Without further ado, let MEGATechNews guide you to the best back-to-school purchases. Acer C7 Chromebook The Acer C7 Chromebook would be excellent for a student and not just for the obvious reasons. Obviously it's super portable and incredibly cheap for a laptop at just $199. It offers an 11.6-inch display, a 16GB SSD, a Celeron processor and 2 gigs of RAM. That's more than enough power to do your schoolwork. Now, with low specs and Chrome OS, you aren't going to be doing any gaming, but where some might see that as a fault, I definitely see it as a plus if you're buying this as a productivity tool. Not only will you be able to work without the distraction of games, but you can't even install Microsoft Office, so you'll more than likely be doing all of your work in Google Documents - which means everything will be backed up and you won't have to worry about ever losing your work. Get the Acer C7 Chromebook Active 15.6" Backpack I know, this isn't tech, but it's something to store and transport tech, so it's very applicable. The Active 15.6" backpack from Solo caught my attention with its combination of near-infinite pockets, water resistant bottom, and reasonable price. At just $39.99, you can carry pretty much anything you need to carry, at all times. As the name suggests, the backpack can hold a laptop that's as big as 15.6-inches, which is pretty funny considering that I just advised you to get the 11.6-inch Chromebook. It's not as if having extra room is a bad thing. The reflective stripe is a nice bonus that will help you protect when walking or biking along the road at night. Get the Active 15.6' Backpack iPad mini While I've never been an Apple guy, it's hard to ignore the appeal of the iPad mini. It boasts a lot of features that make the iPad such a runaway hit, only with a lower cost and improved mobility. Most students don't need a full size tablet (if they need one at all), especially if you already own a laptop. However, there are some situations where a tablet is simply the more practical option and the iPad mini should work just as well as its larger competitors, especially with iOS's juggernaut of an app store. Get the iPad mini Evernote Speaking of apps, all of the tablets and laptops in the world aren't going to do you much good without the proper applications. Note taking is the cornerstone of studying and while old-fashioned notebooks will never go out of style, the benefit of being able to access your notes anywhere without toting around a stack of wrinkled papers is a pretty big one. I use Evernote myself and link the Android app between my phone and my PC, but Evernote can sync between multiple devices and give you instant access to your notes, pictures, sound clips, and more. Evernote and the proper gadget makes for a very powerful tool. Get Evernote Xperia Z There are a lot of smartphones on the market and chances are you can find a dozen or more that'll do everything you want it do. With that in mind, I picked the Xperia Z for a very specific reason: durability. The Xperia Z has been praised for its ability to withstand punishment. If you're a starving college student (or a high school student bleeding your parents dry) and you break your expensive smartphone, that could be all she wrote. That's why you need something rugged like the Xperia Z to survive your school years. Once you graduate and you're making bank, then you can splurge on a fancier, more fragile phone. Get the Xperia Z Ready, Set, Learn Obviously these five things alone aren't going to carry you all the way through school, but they'll definitely get you started, and hopefully we've made it a little easier to make some of the bigger purchases. It's not easy trying to find the right laptop, tablet, or phone, so we do what we can to steer you in the right direction. Share This With The World!