Having the latest and most expensive models of all electronics does not guarantee anything. What matters is knowing how to use the gadget reasonably, pace oneself, and avoid sleeping on cool features, such as voice assistance. We live in a very tech-driven world, so it is crucial to learn how to make the most out of your gadgets. Follow these tips to become a better technology user.
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Use your screen time wisely
In 2024, it is useless to tell people to spend less time on their phones or with a laptop. After what the past two years have looked like, online work and entertainment have turned into the default norm. To ask someone to reduce their screen time means to ask them to either work or relax less. It just does not work.
What works, though, is to learn how to spend one’s screen time wisely and make it matter. For example, college students are online basically 24/7 because of the Zoom classes, writing assignments, TV shows, and work (if they have one). Sure they can choose to buy an essay or two, but their screen time will not improve much.
The key is to choose the right online entertainment. Reading an eBook, taking an educational course on Coursera, or using an app to learn a new language is much more fun and productive than spending four hours mindlessly scrolling on social media.
Look after your gadgets like you do after yourself
Routine maintenance is as essential for any gadget as it is for a person. Most know that it is never a good idea to work for hours without breaks, neglect exercise, and sleep for less than seven hours a night. But somehow, most people forget that the same goes for their gadgets. Everyone who expects their smartphone, laptop, and any gadget to perform well should take care of it.
Always make sure that there is enough storage space and that your smartphone is not struggling to install yet another app you probably do not need. Also, invest in regular hardware checks, especially for the laptop or computer. They might seem like wasted money but they actually, prolong electronics’ life.
Sync your gadgets
Everyone who has yet to sync their gadgets should do it right now. Few things are more annoying than the realization that you are not logged into the second email on your phone and do not remember the password either. And it always happens in the moments when accessing this email is almost a matter of life and death.
To avoid this, keep all gadgets in sync. A good data synchronization app akin to GoGadget or Evernote is a worthy investment. It is better to spend $20 a month than miss out on potentially life-changing opportunities because of unsynchronized gadgets.
Update your gadgets when you actually need it
Some people buy every new iPhone they cannot really afford simply because it is “uncool” to have an older model. In reality, though, the only people who believe that things like this matter are teenagers. And not the smartest ones at that. No one really cares if a person they meet has an iPhone 8 or iPhone 13. It is the toxic consumer culture that teaches us otherwise.
The rule of thumb is that one’s gadget should respond to their needs. So it makes sense for a photographer or Instagram influencer to buy a $2000 phone with an outstanding camera. But not for an account executive who only needs a camera to take photos on vacation and when out drinking with friends.
Don’t neglect voice assistance
Adding a voice assistant to one’s speaker is a life changer. If nothing else, it helps to avoid leaving the couch to change the song (but obviously, any decent voice assistant can do so much more). The best options available are:
- Google Assistant. Google Assistant is pretty accurate most of the time. And it keeps getting better by the day. The only real drawback is its limited device compatibility.
- Amazon Alexa. Alexa is brilliant and has smart home support. However, it can sometimes be inaccurate when the question is not asked Alexa the way she prefers it.
- Apple Siri. Siri is the most popular voice assistant for a reason; it is the best option for all Apple lovers.
Ultimately, it doesn’t really matter which voice assistant you opt for out of these three. But getting one is a must in 2024.
Practice digital detox from time to time
Once again, trying to limit one’s screen time rarely works. But taking a break and having a small digital detox is essential for mental wellbeing. If possible, try to take an hour-long walk every day and leave your smartphone at home. Alternatively, go big and take a no-phone hike or camping trip every once in a while.
The thing is, even a day without social media and messengers can do wonders for one’s mental health. It is no less healing than a productive meditation session (and much more fun). The key to making digital detox a habit is to find a partner who is into this as well and keep each other company during your technology breaks.
Know when to sell
Everyone who updates their gadgets regularly should consider how to get rid of the old ones. Selling them is the best option, especially for people who know how to take care of their gadgets and change them while the previous one is still workable. A pro tip: try to sell your old iPhone (or any other gadget) before the next model is released to maximize its value.
Treat your smartphone like a shrine it is—remember about routine maintenance, do not update it for the sake of updating, and sell the old one before it is too late. The same is true for all gadgets. But also, treat your mind like a shrine as well—use your screen time wisely and organize occasional digital detox. Finally, sync all the gadgets you own and get a voice assistant for your speakers already.