There was a time in the not-so-distant past when the smartphone was considered a rich man’s luxury. They were expensive and had questionable utility for the consumer. That didn’t stop many consumers from jumping onboard anyway.
At some point, they became a necessity for business types and luxuries for everyone else. Accessories started appearing as luxury add-ons. Tech and design companies know that people love to accessorize, and the smartphone proved to be a goldmine. But for the longest time, they were still only nice-to-haves rather than must-haves.
Today when you get that new iPhone 8 from AT&T Mobile, you have to pick up a few extra parts to complete the kit. While still technically optional, your experience is not complete without certain add-ons that don’t come in the box. Here are some of the new necessities that complete the experience:
Apple nixed the headphone jack with the iPhone 7. It is never coming back. And while they continue to bundle headphones with a lightning connector, what Apple is pushing is the wireless experience. It is an experience that is better in almost every way.
They introduced one of the first pairs of truly wireless headphones. And it is recognized as best in class. But to get them, you will need to extend the credit card a whopping $159. Even if you skip that particular offering, you are going to want to pick up something better than what comes in the box.
The best headphones for 2018 are probably going to be wireless to accommodate the trend in smartphone design. But there are still plenty of great wired choices. You just might need a dongle or two to make them work with all your devices.
It is hard to say who is to blame for making all-glass devices a thing. Apple was one of the first. Lots of other manufacturers joined the parade. Then, there is physics. Surely, we can also blame physics. Inductive charging coils love glass.
The new phones that you want to own are wrapped in glass – beautiful, breakable glass. And if you don’t have a protective case on your new iPhone 8 when you drop it, repairs could exceed $500. You don’t just want a protective case. These days, you need a protective case. Don’t leave the store without one.
One day this might change. But for now, iPhones don’t need third-party security software to protect you against viruses, adware, malware, and ransomware. Unfortunately, Android phones do.
The simple truth is that Android has fewer protections built into the hardware and software. Hackers know that. And they have made lucrative careers targeting those devices. That is not to say you should not use an Android device. You just have to be realistic about your threat-level.
iOS has the occasional vulnerability. But the truth is it is just plain hard to write viruses for iOS. Beyond that, most iOS users keep their devices updated. So there are few old units to target. Practically no Android devices are on the latest OS release. And for many devices, there is no upgrade path. So it is more worthwhile to target that platform. Antivirus is a necessary add-on for maximum security.
Smart Home Devices
We are still at the beginning of the smart home movement. Home automation has been around for a long time. But it has only been in the homes of the excessively wealthy. Smartphones are inspiring home automation devices that anyone can afford, and install in just about any preexisting home without much work.
Right now, it is a luxury to tell your lights to come on and have them actually do it. But there are safety and security smart home accessories like cameras, door locks, and carbon monoxide detectors that can save lives. The newer devices are simply better and communicate with your smartphone.
When you buy the latest smartphone, don’t leave without a few necessary add-ons: headphones for better music enjoyment, a protective case, and at least one smart home device.