5 Cheap Gadgets Every Road-Warrior Lawyer Must Have
You already know that if you're going to be lawyering on the road, you're going to need a laptop -- preferably one with amazing battery life, like the Macbook Air. And you probably also already have a smartphone and perhaps a tablet.
None of those are cheap, nor are they the focus of this list. This list is all about accessorizing with little gadgets that will keep you as productive on the road as you are in the office.
Here are five cheap gadgets you may want to have handy:
1. Battery Pack.
These are handy no matter how long your trip lasts -- a few hours, or a few days. These simple power banks are batteries with USB charging ports (and sometimes extraneous features like a built-in flashlight).
They come in capacities large enough to charge your phone or tablet multiple times, or tiny variants that'll give you a quick half-charge when you're running low at the end of the day in court. And there are countless generic variants, which means you'll only shell out $20 or so for one.
2. Car 3-Prong Power Inverter/Adapter.
If you're a true road warrior, like "The Lincoln Lawyer," these are especially handy for keeping your laptop or low-power inkjet printer going. Instead of a cigarette lighter charger for your smartphone, these provide the standard three-prong adapter that larger devices use.
Again, there are countless generic manufacturers, so pick a cheap one with good reviews and you should be set for only a few bucks.
3. Mobile Internet (Mi-Fi or Hotspot).
Plane, train, or automobile, you're going to want to stay connected to the Internet. Your cell phone is likely capable of tethering to your laptop and other devices, for an extra fee, but you'll need to keep a power cable handy. An alternative is a cellular hotspot or USB modem.
My personal favorite is my FreedomPop USB stick, which has no monthly fee for a few hundred megabytes of data. If you're a heavy user, you might want to shop around for a multi-gigabyte plan. You might also consider getting your hotspot from a different carrier than your cell phone -- it may cost a lot more per month, but you'll have better luck when one of them loses coverage.
4. Travel Wi-Fi Router.
These are especially handy if you're going to be staying at a hotel for more than a day or two, or if you're bringing along multiple devices. Instead of trying to connect to the hotel's Wi-Fi, which often has exorbitant fees attached, you can plug one of these into the wired connection and have your own mini-network.
Lifehacker has a list of five suggestions, many of which run under $20.
5. Bluetooth Headset or Headphones (With Microphone).
Wires get annoying real quick when you're jumping in and out of airplane seats and terminals. A nice wireless Bluetooth headset (for one ear) or headphones (for both ears) with a microphone will not only allow you to bump tunes while working, but also comes in handy for video and audio calls. It might also save you a ticket if you take a call while driving.
You can find generic variants for as little as $20 if you shop around, but nothing is quite as annoying as a low-quality headset where the person on the other end is like "huh? WHAT?" If you're going to splurge on one of these devices, go for a higher quality headset with good reviews.
What's your "must have" road warrior gadget? Tweet us @FindLawLP with your pick.
- 3 High-Tech Ways to Get Paid by Your Client: Online, Mobile, NFC (FindLaw's Technologist)
- Mac Desktop Buyers' Guide Q4 2014: New Mac Minis and iMacs (FindLaw's Technologist)
- With 'Apple SIM,' New iPads Can Connect to Different Carriers (FindLaw's Technologist)
You Don’t Have To Solve This on Your Own – Get a Lawyer’s Help
Meeting with a lawyer can help you understand your options and how to best protect your rights. Visit our attorney directory to find a lawyer near you who can help.