Our favorite backtoschool picks for 2019

first_img 3 Apple Sure, Apple’s excellent AirPods may be the more visible campus status symbol — but Sony’s brand-new wireless earbuds are the superior product. At $230, they’re not cheap. But they sound better, deliver 6 to 8 hours of battery life and have active noise-canceling features, one of only two models in this class with the feature.Read more: Sony WF-1000XM3 earbuds battle it out against Apple’s AirPods 2 Apple MacBook Air In July, Apple debuted a brand-new MacBook Air featuring its True Tone display technology and a recalibrated list price of $1,100. I think it should cost $1,000. But Best Buy has an even better deal on it right now: $900. That’s a major discount on one of the best laptops around for students.  reading • Our favorite back-to-school picks for 2019 News • Hands-on with the new Apple MacBook Air and MacBook Pro Read CNET’s list of best back-to-school backpacks and bags Tyler Lizenby/CNET I’ve been using Burton’s Spruce 26L backpack for the past year, and I think it’s the best, most versatile bag I’ve ever owned. It’s comfortable to wear, looks cool and is made with durable materials, including weather-resistant zippers. From the quick-release magnetic buckles to the fleece-lined laptop pocket, this bag is extremely well-designed from top to bottom. And it comes with Burton’s lifetime warranty. If you’re looking for something a little higher-end, I also love the weatherproof Rhake backpack from Mission Workshop. At $365, it’s expensive, but the 22-liter roll-top compartment is cavernous, the laptop compartment that opens from the side is so handy — and the bag just looks extremely slick.  You need tunes for both work and play. Most small Bluetooth speakers don’t sound good — but the new UE Wonderboom 2 delivers full audio in a durable, waterproof package at a reasonable price.  See at Amazon Read more on the UE Wonderboom 2 See also Chris Monroe/CNET The Lenovo Smart Clock is a minimalist, customizable smart clock that can recommend alarms based on your calendar. It comes with the full power of Google Assistant voice control, so it’s basically a Google Home Mini with a clock face. Our favorite feature is also the most visceral — you can snooze your alarms just by whacking the thing. Even better, Best Buy is selling the clock for $20 off its list price, bringing the total to $60, through Sept. 7.  See at Amazon Read the Sony WF-1000XM3 review Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. See at Amazon Read the Dell XPS 13 review • Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System coffee maker Comments See at Hello Fresh See at Walmart Our favorite back-to-school picks for 2019 11 great gadgets that can smarten up a dumb dorm room Best back-to-school headphones Uber gift card Hydro Flask Modern students are aware of the benefits of staying hydrated, and many are discerning about the container they use. Hydro Flask bottles keep liquids cool for up to 24 hours and hot drinks warm up to 12 hours. And they’re tough enough to survive the rigors of campus life. Read more: CNET’s full list of the best water bottles See at Amazon Burton Spruce 26L Backpack Burton Apple MacBook Air Read the Ninja Hot and Cold Brewed System review Originally published last month. Updated to reflect new sale prices. See at Uber Instant Pot pressure cooker Read the AmazonBasics Microwave review Rocketbook Fusion notebook You can find similar components in other laptops at around the same price, but few can match the XPS 13 for its near-perfect combination of size, slim bezel, processing power, great design and excellent keyboard, plus a wide range of price options.  Walmart Walmart Amazon Bluetooth Best Buy Dell Google Lenovo Microsoft Roku Sony Nintendo Uber Apple TCL Read the MacBook Air (2018) review Sarah Tew/CNET Sarah Tew/CNET See at Best Buy Sarah Tew/CNET See at Walmart Nintendo Switch Read the TCL S325 review From the best phones for students to the best laptops to everything else in between, we’ve curated a handful of recommendations for campus life. Check out our picks for basic cooking equipment, more advanced gear for foodies, eight inexpensive things to keep students healthy at college and the best gifts under $50.Below, we’ve rounded up our favorite back-to-school picks for 2019. Have a look.Note that CNET may get a share of the revenue if you buy anything featured on our site.     In 2019, the TV remains central to many forms of modern entertainment. This particular model comes with a Roku built in, making streaming apps effortlessly accessible. The 32-incher can be found for under $120 at Walmart and even the biggest, 49-inch model costs just $250. See at Walmart Preview • The MacBook Air is dead. Long live the MacBook Air See at Amazon Dell XPS 13 See it TCL S321/325 series For the lucky student who already has a TV, the Roku Plus will transform it into a full-featured streaming device. This model supports 4K and HDR video, has the best search interface and can control the TV’s volume and power.  Mentioned Above Apple MacBook Air (128GB, Gray, 2018) See at Amazon Sony WF-1000XM3 Bluetooth headphones See at Best Buy See All Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET If the dorm allows it, an Instant Pot is a no brainer for college students. It can do almost anything: make morning yogurt, boil perfect eggs, cook big batches of protein to stretch into meals all week long and even pull off easy desserts. The smaller 3-quart mini Instant Pot might be better for dorm-bound students, but the larger 6-quart model pictured above is often on sale for even less — around $50 — making it a tough deal to turn down. Read more:  15 quick & easy Instant Pot meals | Our favorite Instant Pot cookbooks | Easy Instant Pot breakfast recipes | What’s the best Instant Pot to buy? $1,199 CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Share your voice Hello Fresh meal kit delivery service Tags See at Amazon Read the Roku Streaming Stick Plus review You’ll be hard-pressed to find a student that won’t enjoy playing games on a Nintendo Switch. But unless your gamer is willing to keep the handheld docked to a TV, you’ll want to wait until mid-September to pull the trigger. That’s when you’ll be able to buy the updated Switch that has longer battery life — or the Switch Lite, which will be $100 cheaper. If you do go for this model, though, make sure you get the new Switch model with longer battery life: Here’s how to tell which Switch is which. Read the Lenovo Smart Clock review Review • Apple MacBook Air review: Rebooted as a thinner, lighter, more expensive laptop Smart Display TVs Bluetooth Headsets Media Streamers Laptops Small Appliances Gaming Wireless & Bluetooth Speakers Video Games Lenovo Smart Clock See It Coffee may be the most essential ingredient for academic success. So, some kind of coffee maker is highly advisable, and this jack-of-all-trades Ninja is a great contender. It can handle regular coffee as well as cold brew and even tea, with separate settings and baskets for beans and leaves (loose or bagged). It has a foldaway frothing arm for latte-style drinks — so not only will it save money on Starbucks runs, it’ll make the dorm the most popular spot to study. It includes size settings too, so you can brew a full carafe or a single cup.Read more: Trusty reusable coffee mugs Not only does a meal kit delivery service save time, it cuts down on food waste with perfectly proportionate amounts of ingredients. Plus, thanks to detailed recipe instructions, even novice cooks can pull off impressive meals. There are plenty of meal kit delivery companies to choose from and many offer plans for special diets including vegan and gluten-free selections. But Hello Fresh is currently offering 15% off every box for students (new customers only) plus free shipping on any box when you use code UniDAYS (prices start at $9 per serving). Read more: Best meal kit subscription services See at Amazon Sarah Tew/CNET AmazonBasics Microwave $899 Aug 29 • Best college laptops for 2019 Hydro Flask water bottle There aren’t many things you can’t cook in a microwave, and — unlike hot plates, camping stoves and other niche cookery devices — most dorms allow them. For $60, this AmazonBasics Microwave includes Alexa voice support and a (somewhat random) popcorn reordering feature. Bottom line: It’s a competitively priced cooking device with some useful features you won’t find in other microwaves in the same price range.  Rocketbook’s reusable notebooks make it easy to send notes and other jottings to your email or preferred cloud service (Google Drive, Dropbox, Slack or Evernote). On the one hand, using the Fusion notebook is just marginally more convenient than taking a photo of any piece of paper and sending it to yourself. But the notebook has a few nice usability touches — you can mark an icon at the bottom of the page to route notes to up to seven different destinations — and the sustainability angle is compelling. Included with the notebook is a nice Pilot FriXion pen (which doubles as an eraser) and a microfiber cloth that effectively wipes pages clean to be used again.Note that Rocketbook is offering a back to school discount at getrocketbook.com between Aug. 30 and Sept. 3. Enter the code B2S2019 at checkout to get 25% off an order of $25 or more. See at Amazon Microsoft We are fully in back-to-school mode now, and it’s time to gear up. For the past few weeks, retailers have been ramping up their sales, and we’ve found great deals on the products that students will need as they head back to their dorms and classrooms. It’s not always easy for students to get to the grocery store or the mall, and an Uber gift card can help ease the burden of transportation. The company offers both digital and physical cards in denominations up to $500, and you can give the gift of a ride or food delivery (through the Uber Eats service). Hello Fresh Back-to-School Tech Gift Guide Ultimate Ears Wonderboom 2 Aug 30 • Hate subscription software? Photoshop Elements and Premiere Elements are on sale for $60 each $1,099 Aug 29 • Save up to $500 on Microsoft Surface laptops and tablets Read the Nintendo Switch review Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET See It Sarah Tew/CNET Ninja Roku Streaming Stick Plus Instant Pot Angela Lang/CNETlast_img

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