Consumer technology is enabling interesting use cases at work, and a host of accessories along with our usual gadgets at work helps enhance efficiency and makes us work smartly.
Like most of us, I buy the expensive gadgets sparingly, but keep adding accessories to pair with them to my collection. So it’s not just my shoes and watches that I flaunt, it’s also the interesting accessories I carry to work.
Let’s talk about a few nifty accessories that are a must-have in your office bag this year.
Cables & Adapters
To charge most devices, you’d, of course, need to carry a microUSB cable. You’d obviously need to have a charge-and-sync cable for your devices as is appropriate – microUSB, Lightning, or Type-C. Don’t forget to carry a wall charger to use these cables with a wall outlet.
A useful addition is a display adapter that can help you connect your device to an external display for a meeting or a presentation. There are many combinations, and you’d have to check the specific ports on your smartphone, tablet, or laptop to pick one or more of these – HDMI-to-Display port, HDMI-to-micro HDMI, VGA-to-HDMI, et al. These would help you be always prepared for a hassle-free presentation anywhere.
While portable speakers are mostly bought for listening to music in a group or in a room anytime and anywhere, at work, the best use of these speakers, as we have discovered is conference calls in groups.
Of course, you can also have it on your desk for attending frequent or long calls without having to hold the phone to the ear or have a headset on ears for long. Please make sure the door is closed and you’re not disturbing others.
That’s not all! It is our go to gadget when we want to play ‘Happy Birthday’ for a colleague’s birthday or Christmas carols to indulge in the holiday spirit.
Miracast receiver / Chromecast
These little dongles are increasingly becoming very popular for simplifying the way we make presentations at work. It’s wireless, and you can also present from your smartphone, without the need to lug around your laptop to a meeting. Provided, of course, there is a flat screen TV in the room, which can be used as the projection screen.
Portable Wi-Fi Router
While some of us in our team use mobile hotspots from our smartphones to work on our laptops on the move and at events, several prefer to use the new-age portable Wi-Fi routers.
While the older dongles plugged to a USB offered internet connectivity to just one laptop, these new routers create a hotspot to allow devices (smartphones, tablets and laptops) to connect.
Also called power banks, and juice packs, these are a must have to carry when you are out for leisure or for work. These chargers will save you from battery anxiety when you are out and avoid the struggle to use a single wall outlet in a meeting room. Make sure they are always charged and ready!
SD Card Readers
If you are carrying a camera or a recorder, make sure you don’t forget to carry a card reader. Several newer devices, to achieve slim design, let go of built-in card readers, so an external one plugged to the USB port, will help you transfer your photos and recordings seamlessly.
And finally, you can color-code most of these accessories to match your scheme for the day, month or year. The most popular ones are in Black, white or silver, but increasingly, brands are coming up with pastel blues, neon greens, oranges, and pinks. You can display your device savvy and your fashion sense, by choosing the colors that go best with your gadgets and overall style quotient.
Which one of these, do you think, are indispensable, and what are the must-have accessories or gadgets that you carry to work?