Patric Welch, aka Mr. Noobie on Twitter, is an Indianapolis-based tech trainer, blogger and entrepreneur who has more than 20,000 followers. We asked him – what’s in your tech bag? He shares his basics and go-to devices for travel.
I spend a lot of time reviewing and recommending gadgets to my readers, as well as teaching them how to use the ones they already have. It’s what I love to do. In fact, if you’re lucky I might even make a personal appearance at your local library or, better yet, your house to help you out.
When I do make a personal appearance, you can bet I’ll have my gear bag with me. I almost never go anywhere without it. So when Verizon asked me to reveal the contents of my gear bag, I was happy to oblige.
For starters, the bag itself is a laptop backpack I purchased a few years back from eBags.com. It’s durable, easy to transport and has a ton of pockets for storage.
My go to “big item” that goes with me in my gear bag wherever I go is my iPad 2. It’s easier (and lighter) than carrying around a laptop and puts the Internet and Google just a finger press away when I need it in a pinch.
If I know I’ll need to do a lot of typing on my iPad, I’ll throw my Targus wireless Bluetooth keyboard in my bag. It connects easily and includes iPad specific buttons across the top of the keyboard.
The rest of my items are much smaller but still serve very specific purposes. These include:
- Mophie Juice Pack Powerstation – An absolute must for charging on the go when a power outlet isn’t nearby.
- USB SockIT charger – Probably my favorite charging device ever. It plugs into the wall and provides two USB charging ports. One port handles up to 1.0 amps (for smartphones) and the other up to 2.1 amps (for tablets). It also auto switches power from one port to the other when one isn’t being used or when the device attached has finished charging.
- USB SockIT car charger/power adapter – Pretty much the same as above except it plugs into the power adapter in your car.
- USB portable hard drive – Perfect for backing up customer files before working on their computer or for transfering files from an old computer to a brand new computer.
- USB thumb stick – A little quicker than the portable hard drive and provides a nice backup of my presentation files and handouts. Plus, it fits in my pocket!
- ShutterBall – Most people have never heard of this but it’s brilliant. It’s a small ball you hold in your hand. A round button on the ball doubles as a wireless shutter button for your smartphone’s camera. No more awkward selfies!
- Earbuds – I prefer headphones but don’t always carry them with me because I use them frequently at home. Earbuds are a practical backup.
- Ethernet cable – Not really for me but for my customers. It helps when I’m trying to fix connection problems between their computer and the Internet.
- Composite cable – You know, the red, white and yellow cable? You wouldn't believe how often this comes in handy when people are hooking digital cameras and other gadgets up to older televisions.
- Swiss Army knife – Opening boxes, cutting things and a screwdriver to boot. Who doesn’t love a Swiss Army knife?
- Microfiber cloth – Ewwww, fingerprints. I don't like them. Nothing cleans my device screens better than a microfiber cloth.
Those are the basics. But when I travel I throw in a few extras like:
- ASUS laptop – 15.6” screen and it runs Windows 8. It’s my go-to device when my iPad won’t serve the purpose.
- SOL Republic headphones – To say I love these headphones would be the understatement of the year. They sound great and every component of the headphones can be replaced separately or interchanged.
- Finally, not necessarily in my gear bag but always on me are my Samsung Galaxy S4 and my Fitbit Force.
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