Best Tools For Blogging On The Go
There is no down time for those running a blog and for those bloggers, having the right tools for blogging on the go is essential to remain active while traveling.
Make blogging on the go even easier with cheap tablets and cool gadgets designed to help writers who are always on the move. Here are six of the essential tools for bloggers who roam the world but won’t settle for less-than-ideal conditions when it comes to their craft.
An International Mobile Hotspot
Anyone who travels knows that finding reliable WiFi can be single-most determining factor when deciding where you want to plunk down and get to work on your tablet PC. You may get around this problem, to some degree, by using your cell phone to tether. However, that’ll eat up your mobile data plan usage faster than you can say, “download this”.
Tethering is problematic in a number of other ways, including:
- It drains the battery on your mobile phone
- It not only gobbles up your data allotment, but some mobile carriers charge a fee for tethering
- It’s less secure than using your own mobile hotspot
An international mobile hotspot solves both of those problems, plus a few more. An international hotspot allows you to easily create your own secure WiFi network and conveniently connect all your mobile wireless devices. This means you can travel the world without incurring expensive data roaming charges, hunting for costly and unreliable hotel networks, unlocking your phone, or renting and returning overpriced equipment.
Bluetooth Wireless Headphones
As far as cool gadgets go, Bluetooth wireless headphones take the prize for complementing Android tablets perfectly. They grant you the power to turn any location, no matter how chaotic and distracting, into a personal oasis of calm so you can focus on your writing. They also offer you superhuman focus abilities while you’re in transit (such as on an airplane or a train). Finally, for let’s say, that shared workspace you frequent over in Bangkok, it keeps those around you from bothering you when you have a serious blogging deadline to meet.
Since prices for these can be notoriously high, it’s important not to over-pay.
If you want noise-canceling ability, you’ll have to aim for over-the-ear headphones, as the earbud style doesn’t do nearly as good a job. Whatever you end up purchasing, you’ll definitely want to try them for a few days… so make sure you purchase from a reputable store with a good return policy.
What to Look For:
- Built-in microphone so you can use them with your phone
- A USB cable so you can use them like regular (non-Bluetooth) headphones
- Low battery indicator—especially useful when you’re on the road
Cheap Android Tablets
When it comes to tools for blogging, a tablet PC is solely responsible for enabling the international blogger lifestyle. And anybody who’s chosen that lifestyle will tell you: they definitely don’t want to pay through the nose for their tablet computer.
The first step in keeping things affordable is choosing one of the cheap tablets that run on Android. It’s the most robust OS because it’s extremely flexible, allowing lots of capability and bang for the software buck. Secondly, it’s actually open source. Shared coding means manufacturers of Android tablets can keep prices low by not having to write an operating system from scratch. Finally, the Android OS means you’ll have access to a very large array of apps for your tablet.
To find the best value for your money, look for the following in a cheap Android tablet:
- A sturdy design
- High enough screen resolution
- Powerful specs: lots of storage, lots of RAM
- A microSD slot
- Large selection of apps
- Aim for a 10-hour battery life
A Folding Bluetooth Keyboard
Even if you have already invested in a keyboard case for your Android tablet, you may still want to consider upgrading to a folding Bluetooth keyboard. Since you can fold these up into a very manageable size, they’re easily stowable.
The folding element is key for any blogger who intends to maintain gear minimalism so they can be light on their feet as they travel. Compactness and mobility… reasons you chose to blog on a tablet computer in the first place.
The key is finding one that doesn’t sacrifice usability in order to achieve portability.
What to Look For:
- Rubber feet to keep the keyboard from sliding around when you type
- Other stability features like folding legs
- Key spacing (space between the keys) and key size that are close to that of a full-size keyboard
- Battery status indicator is nice to have
- Added feature: use it with your phone, too
You don’t have to be a tech-obsessed Millennial to appreciate the beauty of smart luggage. For the roaming blogger, there’s the perennial issue of keeping your tablet PC charged. In airports, camping out on the floor next to few-and-far-between outlets gets old really fast.
Smart luggage is your own portable charging machine. It’s not only good for airports but even better when the beachside hut that’s temporarily serving as your home loses power. Keep your luggage charged and you always have a backup power source when you urgently need one.
There are other benefits to the smart luggage, too. It’s ‘connected’, meaning it’s got GPS tracking built in and you’ll always know where it is. For bloggers who might find themselves dwelling in budget-friendly habitations, this can be a life-changing feature. Some even have WiFi hotspots built in as well.
An External Battery Charger
You might have noticed that keeping your gear powered up is a constant struggle while on the road. If you’re a heavy-hitter when it comes to writing, then one of the most important cheap gadgets you’ll run across is the external battery charger.
That’s because even if you’ve chosen a tablet computer with a high-capacity battery, that still won’t be enough. To keep from running out of juice while your creative energies are at their highest and you can’t afford an interruption in your flow of work, get yourself a portable, external battery for your power-hungry tablet PC.
There’s a wide range of options out there, but for the traveling blogger, many of those options can be eliminated. Some external batteries are tiny but only allow a top-off. Others are huge but can handle charging not only your tablet but multiple tablets at the same time. That’s overkill.
You’ll need to decide whether you want your pack to simply extend your battery by, let’s say 50 percent. Or maybe you want more power, so you can double your battery life.
What to Look For:
- 14,000 mAh or more if you want to power table + phone 100%
- 1A port if you want to charge while using your device
- Indicator light so you know remaining power
A Final Word
The key to living the agile lifestyle of the traveling blogger is keeping gear to a minimum. That means extracting double duty from the gear you do choose to take with you on the road. Don’t settle for cheap gadgets that offer little extras to entice you to buy them. Look for high-quality features, value pricing, and an acceptable trade-off between portability and function. Happy trails and may the force of good writing be with you!