As you probably know by now, you can’t just solve your tech-related issues by purchasing a single product. A major piece of technology is supported by an ecosystem of other products. Some products don’t even come with items that are necessary to make it work.
Bring home certain smartphones and you will not receive a wall plug to charge them or headphones of any kind to work with them. Apple was the first to remove these items from the packaging and was roundly mocked and criticized by companies such as Samsung. That didn’t last long as Samsung quickly followed with the same omissions. If a company can save a few dollars by not giving you the necessary peripherals, they will.
This is just one of the things that makes purchasing electronics even more expensive than ever before. It is easy to understand why so many people are looking to finance electronics with small loans rather than wait till they can afford to make the purchase outright. Sometimes, you pay a high opportunity cost when you wait. Life does not wait for a convenient moment when your finances are perfect. You need a job and that job requires you to work from home. Get the tech and pay it off with your first few paychecks. While you are making those tech purchases, don’t forget these companion products that don’t come in the box:
These days, you can’t buy a piece of tech that does not benefit from broadband internet. Choosing the right broadband connection for your business is even more complicated when your business is located in your home. Your TV needs an internet connection along with your toaster and light bulbs. Computers, phones, game consoles and even your bathroom scale calls for wifi.
Gone are the days when you could just settle for the least expensive internet service in your area. The lowest tier is most likely insufficient for an active family or business. Your daily Zoom meeting for work demands a lot more than that.
The number of devices you have in the house also has an effect on how fast your service is. You will get slower speeds as a general rule if you have several devices using the service at once. Another consideration is wired vs wifi. Wired services are usually much faster than wireless regardless of the theoretical wireless speed. The further you are away from the router, the weaker the signal and slower the service. Short runs of wire is almost always the best broadband you can get. Your brand new computer is not the bottleneck. It is most likely the broadband connection.
Chargers and Battery Packs
The best laptop in the world will not help you if the battery happens to be dead when you need to use it. Apple laptops come with notoriously expensive charging plugs. They might actually be worth it. But that doesn’t change the fact that they are expensive. Even so, you would be wise to purchase an extra charger to keep in your bag regardless of the cost. No one ever runs out of charge when working at home. They run out of charge when they are away from power.
Smartphones will never get to the point of having as much battery life as the feature phones of yesteryear. If you are the type of person who takes a lot of photos with your smartphone and runs the screen at max brightness, you will be running out of battery long before the end of the day. If you don’t have a way to give it some juice while you are out and about, you will find yourself stuck with a smartphone-shaped brick by the end of the day.
Cases and Screen Protectors
Tech is more durable than ever. But glass is still glass. Mobile devices with a screen need screen protection. The out-of-pocket cost of replacing those screens is higher than ever before. The first line of defense is putting those mobile devices in cases, including your laptop. Drops will not be as devastating. These devices are expensive and you have to protect them. To that end, you probably want to make sure those devices are covered in your homeowner’s or renter’s insurance.
No matter how much you paid for your tech stack, your purchase is not complete without the fastest broadband you can afford, chargers and battery packs to keep them going, and protection to keep them safe.