back to school

Consumer Reports: Back to School Tech Deals

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As many North Texas students face starting the school year digitally, technology is in high demand.

Consumer Reports highlighted some of the items available at a discount that could help your child thrive in this new e-learning environment.

COVID -19 is changing the way kids do school. With many families choosing to learn from home or districts choosing to delay the reopening of classrooms-- your kids need technology.

"Things like laptops, headphones, even wireless routers to improve your internet at home," said Consumer Reports deals editor, Samantha Gordon.

Right now, there are deals for many of the items a student needs. One of the top items is a laptop with a camera.  

"The LG Gram 14 is a favorite of ours. It usually costs around $1200 and we’re seeing some discounts there. This laptop only weighs 2.2 pounds so it's easy to cart around whether you're moving from room to room in your house or running from class to class. It also has 20 hours of battery life so it's going to last all day long," said Gordon.

And if you need better wifi, there are deals on routers to help boost your connection.

"You definitely want to have good reliable internet whether you're doing zoom calls all day or you're researching for papers like that. We’re seeing a great deal on the Netgear Nighthawk Wireless Router. That usually costs around $190 and it’s been about $30 off within the last month or so. It’s really great for small to midsized homes to make sure you’re getting internet in every corner of your house so you can work where you’re most comfortable. It’s also got some pretty good cybersecurity built into it so it can help keep everybody safe as well,” said Gordon.

If your student is working from home, you’ll want to make sure they have a good pair of headphones.

"Retailers are aware that everybody is at home and everybody needs some alone time and noise-canceling headphones might be the only way to do that these days. There’s a great pair of noise-canceling headphones on sale from Microsoft Surface Headphones. They usually cost around $250 which is about $100 less than those higher-end models from Sony and Bose but you’re not really sacrificing much quality. They don’t sound quite as good but everything else in our tests they scored really well. They’re around $192 at Best Buy right now which we think is a really good price to get that sound isolation so you can really focus in on your schoolwork,” said Gordon

Parents may want to also consider getting smart speakers, like the Amazon Echo or Google Home. Kids can ask them questions while studying and set timers and reminders that can be helpful tools.

"The Google Home Mini is the best one that is on sale right now because it's the most affordable. It's only $30. It’s usually $50 and it’s been on sale for the last month or so at pretty much every retailer including Bed, Bath and Beyond, Best Buy, Amazon and Walmart and even Home Depot  It’s a really great option," said Gordon.

Consumer Reports expects to see many of these sales last through early September.

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