Tech to make uni manageable

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By Martin Driver 27 Feb 2018

If you’re getting ready to move out to university or you’ve been there for a while, there's loads of new tech that can make your life more manageable.  

It’s worth taking having a look if you’re staying at home or starting a new college course too, as these things will make studying easier and your work environment nicer.

We’ve broken everything down into a few different sections below:

Writing & research

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Regardless of the course, you’re going to be writing a load of essays, so you’ll need a decent laptop with the software you need to write at your best.

Laptop

A few years ago, the most common size of laptop screen size was 15.6”. However, this is a bit big now and isn’t ideal for a laptop that you’ll be carrying to lectures and the library.

Look for one with a screen 14” and under, as it’ll be small enough to take with you anywhere while still giving a clear space for writing. This article was written on a 14” laptop and it’s perfect for everyday use.

 
 
 
 

A fast processor and high-performance storage will help it keep up with you when you’re on a roll, so look for one with an Intel Core i5/i7 processor and a solid-state drive (SSD).

Storage capacity isn’t that important, as you can (and should) store all of your important documents in the Cloud. Saying 'my computer died' won't get you out of any essay deadlines. Make backups. 

Find a powerful yet portable laptop at Currys PC World

Microsoft Office

Your most used software when writing and researching will probably be Microsoft Office.

Your lecturers will likely expect essays written in and submitted as Word documents, so it’s a good idea to get it before you go.

 
 
 
 

Microsoft Office also has OneNote and Excel, which are perfect for easily referencing essays and managing your loan and budget.

If you’re buying a new laptop, you can get Office at a great discount – just look for the offers at the bottom of the product page.

If you just need the software, have a look at all the different versions here

Entertainment & downtime

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University isn’t just about studying, so you’ll need a few things in your room to keep you occupied between lectures.

Bluetooth speaker

A Bluetooth speaker is the cheapest and easiest way to get your music from your phone and into your room.

 
 
 
 

There are loads to choose from and they work with all modern smartphones, tablets, and computers.

Look for something portable and waterproof, so you can take it outside in the summer.

You can look through them all at Currys PC World

Music streaming

A good digital streaming service is a must-have too - we use Spotify Premium in the office as it’s only £10 a month and has pretty much everything released from every genre over the past few decades. There’s a high-quality streaming option to give you the best sounding music possible.

 
 
 
 

There are others though, so check out Tidal, Google Music, and Amazon Music if Spotify doesn’t do it for you

Find out more about them in our Best Streaming Services article

TV streaming

You can stream Netflix and Prime Video from your laptop, but if you don’t want to plug it into the monitor every time you’re watching something, Google Chromecast or Amazon Fire TV are much easier.

 
 
 
 

The main difference is Chromecast pushes video from your phone/computer to the monitor/TV, while Fire TV works by itself. We like Fire TV, as it has a remote, supports Netflix, and has all of the main catch-up channels already installed.

Take a look at all the different ways you can stream TV

Things for your room

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There are a few other things that can make uni a little bit easier while you’re away from home.

Have a look at them below.

Drinks machine

Prepare for the early starts after late nights with fresh coffee every morning. Much cheaper in the long run than buying from a coffee shop and higher quality than instant coffee, you can make the perfect drink to perk you up in seconds.

You can even get smart coffee makers you can control from your phone or start up with your morning alarm.

 
 
 
 

For speed and variety, look at pod machines. For the best quality possible at home, try a bean to cup machine.

If juices and smoothies are more your thing, a juicer is easier and cheaper than buying them in.

Voice assistants

Voice assistants like Amazon Alexa and Google Home are more than just a gimmick. You can play music, set alarms, schedule reminders, control your TV, and loads more.

 
 
 
 

If you have a Bluetooth speaker and a music streaming service like Spotify, you can start music playing with your voice.

Shop for Amazon Alexa and Google Home.

If there’s anything you want to talk to us about, you can reach us on Facebook and Twitter.

If you want to speak to someone on the phone, check out our Contact Us page.

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