Summer’s come to an end, and as strappy tops and short skirts give way to sweaters and boots, there’s plenty of fun and very gay back-to-school shopping to be done! From fancy phone cases to shiny single-serve coffeemakers, to a backpack that wards off thieves, there’s something for everyone looking for back-to-school gadgets at every price point. Out of school and into the workforce? Get into the spirit with a brand-new gadget and set fresh goals for a successful autumn.
- Tribit Bluetooth Speaker ($32.99-$36.99)
Incredible sound, wireless connection, and affordable? Sign me up! This speaker is small enough to fit in any purse or backpack and even comes with an adorable strap so you can tote it on its own. The battery life is up to 24 hours, and if you don’t want yet another plain black device, the speaker also comes in blue. Best of all, it’s waterproof, so you can squeeze in one last pool party or take an energizing shower with the help of your favorite tunes. Crank up these gay ‘90s songs, and you’re in business!
- Cafele Anti-Theft Laptop Backpack ($26.99-$33.99)
Let’s face it: Our computers contain our entire lives and losing yours can have devastating consequences. Get peace of mind post-haste with this badass backpack, which cozily fits your laptop, textbooks, other back-to-school gadgets, and whatever notebook you’re scribbling in these days. Lightweight with tons of storage and a USB charger, the backpack boasts a double-layer zipper and anti-theft buckle on the side pocket, keeping all of your valuables secure from wandering hands – and it comes in a rainbow of hues. Strap on (heh) and stay safe!
Femmes (and those who love us) take heed: this case may be pricey, but like everything with Spade’s name, it’s soooooo pretty. Solid black and festooned with pink flower buds, it’s all parts subtle, gorgeous and whimsical – enough to make the late designer proud. Protect your phone from scratches and store your credit card (and that precious café punch card where you’re just one drink away from a freebie!). If you’re not into pink flowers yourself, these are great back-to-school gadgets for your graduate-student girlfriend: a pretty reminder that even at her most stressed, she’s the light of your life.
There’s nothing lovelier than curling up with a good book (a queer romance novel perhaps?) in front of a crackling fire with a mug of cider in your hand or squeezing in a few pages on the subway to class. This new Kindle has a built-in front light so you can see every smutty or educational (or both) word with crisp clarity. It is so lightweight you can tote your entire library in one hand. What you do with the other hand – take notes, sip tea or…get inspired by that hot lesbian sex scene – is up to you.
Whether you’re writing yet another paper or reading in a crowded coffee shop, drowning out the loud people who always seem to sit by you is a priority. These headphones cancel out acoustic noise (buh-bye, morning gays sitting next to me on the bus!) and have both voice assistants and a battery life of up to 20 hours. They come in a variety of hues (including a fetching rose-gold), and you can customize the shade for an extra $50. Turn up the Indigo Girls, Taylor Swift, or your favorite LGBTQ+ podcast and finish your book or project in record time, with no outside distractions!
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S4 ($549.99)
Tablets are a must, whether you’re a working gay or a student plugging away, and this one is the best of the best. Do everything from creating PowerPoints to crunching numbers in Excel to streaming The L Word: Generation Q’s teaser trailer for the millionth time from the comfort of your desk, couch or train seat. You can even attach a keyboard and employ voice control with Google Assistant. Short of your homework assignment or work presentation, this tablet will do almost everything for you, leading to less hassle and more time to make eyes at the adorable barista who gave you an extra cookie this morning…
- Mophie Powerstation (Fabric) ($49.95)
Don’t be like me, desperately plugging my phone into my laptop outside a hotel in Times Square so I can get enough power to call a Lyft to the airport post-Broadway show. You can buy a portable battery at any drugstore, but why sacrifice quality? Mophie’s powerstation is longer-lasting than ever before, and this version has a fabric cover in several gorgeous colors. (I’m partial to the light pink because, well, femme.) You’ll be prepared for every long lecture and be able to call for a ride when your hookup gets too clingy.
- HP Sprocket Plus Instant Photo Printer ($149.85)
Everything’s digital these days, but who doesn’t yearn for the permanence of print photos? Surprise your summer crush turned fall girlfriend with a print of your cutest pic together – or even a photo sticker for some late ‘90s nostalgia – using this printer. Not only is it thin and portable (about the size of a smartphone) with wireless capability, you can print right from your phone and add text, borders, and filters through the HP Sprocket app. Decorate your apartment or dorm room and be the hit of every back-to-school shindig!
As the air chills, caffeine is of the essence to finish homework, start new projects, and muster up the courage to call the girl you made out with Friday night. Just the sight of this shiny coffeemaker will energize you just as much as the coffee you put in it! No waiting around here – you can brew an 8-ounce cup in less than 90 seconds, and a 14-ounce travel mug size in two and a half minutes. With regular and bold drip options, you can customize your first drink of the day just so and take requests from the honey in bed next to you! You won’t even have to worry about any other back-to-school gadgets.