August 2, 2017
Taryn BitterlyStaff Writer
Your college packing list should consist of more than shower shoes and No. 2 pencils.
Imagine walking into your dorm and with just six words you can be watching your favorite show without pressing a single button. Or, your quick library visit is turning into an all-nighter, so you turn off your lights and electronics all the way across campus – with your smartphone.
Smart home technology isn’t just for houses. Some of the latest and greatest products work great in a dorm to give you an A+ environment for studying, having fun or staying organized.
We checked in with Noel Medina on how to get a tech’d out dorm of your dreams. He’s a sophomore at the University of Arkansas Fayetteville studying psychology and business. But when he’s not in class, he’s a Blue Shirt giving out expert tech advice.
“Honestly, the use of technology in college has been helpful for me,” Noel says. “Not just the basics, like your laptop and phone, but all the smart home devices help with time efficiency and organization.”
Plus, technology can come in when you need a little stress relief from your internships, exams, group projects and more, he says.
Here’s his list of six must-have products to smarten up your dorm:
A voice assistant is a college students’ best friend. Seriously, it’s like your Google sidekick to help you stay on top of your game.
Google Home can help you with your homework by answering all your questions, like what is “plane” in German or convert 107° Fahrenheit to Celsius. It can be your partner in managing hectic schedules, in addition to instantly playing your favorite studying playlist on Spotify.
“Google Home is awesome to set up reminders for all of your exams without even having to touch your phone,” Noel says.
With Chromecast, you can stream wirelessly from your devices. “If you have to watch videos for your class, you’ll be able to stream them to your TV,” Noel says.
Well played, Noel. But your Chromecast also comes in handy when you need a Netflix binge after a long day of class. Plus, with Google Home you won’t even have to worry about finding your remote under your roommate’s heap of laundry. Just tell Google to play Stranger Things and you’re set.
“Insignia Smart Plug allows you to control power to all your devices away from your dorm. So, if you’re running late and forget to turn off your A/C unit, you can just do it from your phone,” Noel says. “It’s very convenient for a busy student.”
Plus, smart plugs are super sustainable and an easy way to save energy. Win-win.
For those who want to be the hangout dorm of your hall, check out the Nintendo Switch. Not only is this product great for your dorm, but you can also take it to-go across campus.
Plus, Noel mentions, “Your roommates will love it too!” Having the latest in gaming consoles is an instant boost to your tech cred.
Get organized while getting your devices juiced up. The Nomad Power Adapter can help you do both so your desk isn’t drowning in cords and cables, and you’ll never find yourself with a dead phone in class.
Because why go to the library to print lots (and lots and lots) of essays when you can do it right from your dorm? The HP Envy All-In-One Wireless Printer is a perfect product for those who are looking for convenience.
“You’ll be able to print out the 10-page essay you wrote for class, plus pictures of your friends and family to put on your walls,” Noel says.
For more information on smart home technology, stop by your local Best Buy and chat with one of our expert Blue Shirts. And for the tech (and money) savvy students, check out our Student Deals to save big on your back to school shopping.