Back to school: Popular electronic gadgets

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By Mike Gertzman By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- Purchasing school supplies is getting more expensive year after year. 

In fact, a recent report indicated that the average cost to send one student back with traditional supplies costs a whopping $95. 

That’s incredibly costly, and that price tag covers just the basics like binders, folders, pens.

For older students, the cost jumps off the charts because many prefer to have the latest high-tech gadgets. 

As it turns out, pens, pencils and paper for the older students are a thing of the past.

"You don't need that stuff anymore when you got a tablet for that," laughs Christina Mendicino who works at a Best Buy in Phoenix.

She's right, because times have definitely changed. Students are using things like Dropboxes or iCloud to save files and photos.

When it comes to back to school needs, Mendicino says smart phones tops the list of must-have items for many students. 

They’re not necessarily for calling people. They’re now used for classwork. 

“We have phones ranging from Samsung, Windows and Apple and honestly one of the biggest ones right now is the Samsung because it's Android system," she says. 

Students jot down notes on their smart phones and photograph homework assignments. 

Students also photograph a teacher’s handwritten notes on an overhead projector screen or blackboard so nothing is misinterpreted.

The other popular back to school gadget is the new Apple TV which can be used for multi-media presentations. 

Mendecio says, "If you're doing a presentation with school, all you have to do is use the Apple TV, plug it in, and it'll sync like a Blue Tooth and boom it's on your TV."

Apple’s Mac Books are also popular this time of year. 

“College students with all universities like them. They really use Apple products because they last so long and they really can just bring their Mac Book in and it's so easy to sync it up and you can do all your presentations from there too," said Mendecino.

But for those who prefer tablets, Apple's iPad, while still popular, has plenty of competition.   

That’s because Asus just released the Android based Nexus 7, which has been very popular with students. 

"You can actually download school books on here so you can go to your app store and download any book you need. So, you can go on Amazon and things like that and it'll download it for tablets," said Mendecino.

For students who cant decide between a tablet or a laptop, Mendecino says they can get something that combines the best of both worlds like the Acer laptop. 

"It's a touch screen, Mendecino explains. “You can change it to where it comes from a computer down to just a tablet.”