Whether you’re off to college, studying abroad, or just trying to get through high school, these iPad accessories can give you an edge.
1. Adonit Jot Script Evernote Edition Fine Point Stylus
You don’t often hear people passionately praising their iPad stylus, which is what makes the Adonit line of styli so impressive. People who use this stylus aren’t shy about recommending it to others.
The Adonit Jot Script Evernote Edition Fine Point Stylus has a tip 70 percent smaller than the nearest competitor. This make it ideal for art students who need to do fine work, or students who need a fine point to write down as much info as possible on a crib sheet.
Pros:Comfortable gripPinpoint accuracyGreat designIdeal for users of PenultimateLED indicator light
Cons:Requires AAA battery: if you run out, your stylus is uselessReally expensiveOnly works on iPad 3rd generation and newer or iPad MiniPoint may be too fine for some types of art creationDoesn’t always work consistently across different apps
2. iConvert Scanner
Constantly losing your syllabi or homework handouts? This iPad scanner can help you stay organized by offering a simple way to scan and store important documents. The only downside? This is an accessory that can really only be used with older iPads with the 30 pin connector.
Pros:Great back to quickly back up paper documentsLightweight and easy to tuck into a backpackAdjustable feeder adjusts from 2″ to 8½” wideAvailable online for nearly 70 percent off list priceReliable brand name
Cons:Doesn’t work with newer iPads that use the lightning connector (unless you have an adapter)For some documents, taking a photograph could give you the same info in less timeSaves as JPEG, may require additional conversion if you need another file type such as PDFSome users reviews state device broke down early in its lifespanTends to give better results with documents than with photos
3. Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard Cover
As nice as the iPad’s on-screen keyboard is, there are times when you want a physical keyboard instead. This keyboard cover from Logitech is a solid option, mostly because Logitech is a respected name in the peripherals game. It comes with a three-year limited warranty. For students who need a laptop-like experience for typing up term papers, this is a great option.
Pros:Multiple color optionsBoth English and Spanish keys are availableSturdy magnetic dockAuto-wake feature built inVery lightweight
Cons:Does not appear to work with the 1st gen. iPadYou may feel more secure transporting this in a case or sleeveKeyboard is small, missing some function keysMagnetic lock could be strongerSome users have experienced accessory failure after six months
4. ION Audio ‘IDJ2GO’ DJ System
Whether you’re studying music or just looking to blow off some steam with a little party, this iPad DJ system is a sweet buy. It could also be used to create sound for a multimedia classroom presentation. For any student who loves music, this is a useful (and fun) iPad accessory.
Pros:Authentic DJ controls including two turntables, audio effects and a crossfaderCompact designNo batteries neededAlso works for iPhones and iPod TouchCompatible with virtually any MIDI-capable DJ app
Cons:Uses 30-pin connector, not lightningRequires additional speakers to really fill a room with soundNot quite nice enough to do a professional gig withLayout may feel cramped to someMay not have enough custom features to appeal to serious DJs
5. Apple World Travel Adapter Kit
Ideal for any student who is doing a semester abroad or planning an epic spring break vacation, this set of travel adapters will let you charge your iPad pretty much anywhere. Designed to work with older iPads, this is a great kit for anyone who owns a hand-me-down iPad. (Scroll down to see our recommendation for a similar kit for lightning connector iPads.)
Pros:Compatible with iPad 1, 2, 3Great for travelAlso designed to work with iPod, iPhone, Apple MagSafe Power Adapters, Portable Power Adapters, and AirPort ExpressSix interchangeable AC adapter plugsMakes a great gift
Cons:Not compatible with lightning connectors without adapter (but this kit is)Seems a little expensive, given the age of the 30-pin lineSome people are worried about USB security issuesBulky design, can take up too much space at the wall socket (bad if you are traveling with a group and all need to charge at once)May be cheaper to buy a single adapter for the country you are visiting, unless you’re a bit of a globetrotter
Considering getting someone an electronics gift? Check out our Gifts section for tons of great gift recommendations, or visit our ultimate guides to the best gifts for women and best gifts for men.