7 Reasons Amazon Fire 10 Is a Terrible Tablet

The Amazon Fire 10 is a useful tablet for a lot of people. It’s an excellent tablet for families since parents can easily control content on the Fire 10 and keep inappropriate materials from kids.

The specs are also fairly impressive. It has a 10.1 inch, 224ppi LCD display. It features a 2GHz Mediatek MT8183 octa-core processor with 2GB of RAM. You can get models with either 32GB or 64GB internal storage. It also supports a microSD card for extra storage of up to 512 GB.

However, there are a lot of limitations and drawbacks of using an Amazon Fire 10. We’ll cover all of these so you know what you’re getting into when you buy one of these tablets.

1. Annoying Login Ads

When you turn on your Amazon Fire 10 tablet, the very first thing you’re confronted with is a full screen ad. The ad changes every time you log in. 

To unlock, you need to drag a finger from the lock icon up.

When you’ve paid from $150 to $190 for an Amazon Fire 10 tablet, the last thing you should have to deal with are ads. And certainly not ads as in-your-face as right on the login screen.

2. Amazon Products and Services

Once you get logged in, you’ll notice that the main page doesn’t let you get very far from Amazon.

Most of the pre-installed apps are for things like Amazon Prime Video, Amazon Music, and Amazon Kids.

This is understandable considering that ultimately the tablet itself is an Amazon product, so of course they’re going to want to drive you toward using Amazon services.

Unfortunately, Amazon’s self-promotion doesn’t end there, as you’ll see below. 

3. The Silk Browser

Then one of the biggest limitations with the Amazon Fire 10 tablet is the Silk browser. It isn’t so much that the Silk browser – the default browser that comes installed on the Amazon Fire tablet – is severely lacking in features. It’s just the fact that you’re limited to use it and nothing else. 

We’ll get to that limitation in a moment, but first it’s important to review the limited features of the Silk browser itself.

As a basic browser, it does the job. It defaults to use the Bing search engine (although you can change this). It is a minimalist, fast browser that gets the job done and will let you surf the internet as well as just about any other browser out there.

However, there’s no real room for expansion with extensions or add-ons. Beyond the basic browser features, don’t expect bells and whistles at all.

The menu is where you’ll find most features, which includes bookmarks, switching dark and light themes, forcing desktop viewing of sites, and a “Private Tab” feature like Chrome’s incognito.

But you’ll also notice even the browser itself is integrated with Amazon features. The menu has a link to your Amazon Lists. It also has a quick link to Amazon for shopping, and a feature called Instant Recommendations that monitors websites you visit so the browser can offer other page recommendations and related searches.

Without a doubt, Instant Recommendations is likely a way for Amazon to also offer you ads that are more relevant to your interests – so enable this with caution.

If you want to use some other browser like Firefox or Chrome, you’re out of luck. If you try searching the Appstore for these browsers, you won’t find them.

What you will find is an unusual app called Google Search, which you may think is the equivalent of the Chrome browser. It isn’t.

4. Google Services Are Scaled-Down Alternatives

If you’re a major user of Google services, this is probably the single issue that’ll turn you off from using an Amazon Fire tablet. 

Google Search is an app that lets you use the Google search engine. Google Chrome this is not. It’s sort of like a beyond-minimalist app that lets you search Google Web and Google Images.

The menu itself is very basic and offers no real links to many other Google services or your Google account.

Search listings default to mobile view, so they don’t even fill the entire page like you would expect. It does the job, but not very well. Especially if you’re used to all of the features offered by the Chrome browser.

Other apps that seem to offer Google services you might want to use are equally scaled down. For example, Google Calendar is absolutely nothing like Google Calendar on the web, or even the Google Calendar app offered by Google for mobile devices.

You only get a Day and Month view, no weekly view at all. There are really no other features to speak of, and the Settings menu is bare of any useful tweaks or customizations to speak of.

The Google Drive app is the same story. There are few other devices that offer a Google Drive app that’s as bare bones as the one on the Amazon Fire tablet.

Yes, if you sign into your Google account on the app, you can access all of the folders and files in your Google Drive. However, that’s all you can do.

It’s essentially a way to access your files so you can view them, edit them, or download them. That’s it.

You can’t create a new directory or file from the app. This seems like a basic feature you’d expect any app that plugs into your Google Drive account to have. But on the Amazon Fire tablet, the functionality just doesn’t exist.

This is a major drawback. Even worse, viewing or editing files doesn’t even use the Google Drive app itself. It opens the file in the Silk browser, where you can view and edit.

Essentially, the Google drive app is almost entirely useless. You’d be better off just accessing your Google Drive account using the Silk browser instead. 

5. Other Amazon Fire Apps are Equally Limited

It isn’t just Google services or apps that are severely limited in functionality. One example is the Facebook app. 

Most of the features you’re used to seeing in Facebook online or the mobile Facebook app are missing from the Amazon Fire Facebook app. It also defaults to mobile view, which looks terrible when using the tablet in wide-screen orientation.

If you tap the menu, it lacks almost everything you see in the Facebook menu on the web or mobile version as well. And again, anything you tap like a link or image will always open in the Silk browser. Like Google services, you’re better off just using the Silk browser to access the Facebook site to begin with.

Amazon Apps are Full Featured

What other apps lack in functionality, Amazon apps have in spades. For example, the Prime video app has all of the menus, categories, and most of the options you’re used to seeing on the Amazon Prime website or mobile app.

You can search for and watch content, view Channels, or select My Stuff to access your library and more.

6. There Are Useful Features But They’re Also Amazon Focused

You will find embedded features on the Amazon Fire 10 tablet that are very useful, so long as you’re an Amazon user. 

For example, the tablet has a dedicated “Device Dashboard” to access and control your smart home devices. But the entire feature is dedicated entirely to using Alexa to control those devices.

Don’t expect the same kind of easy integration if your smart home control hub is something like Google Home.

If you scroll through the tablet settings, you’ll even see Amazon focused settings here. 

The search field at the top of the main screen on the tablet is convenient, but a bit weird. If you search for anything there, it opens something that looks like a very basic web browser – with internet search results displayed in the center window. These results are powered by Bing.

Even internet results are centered primarily on Amazon’s own services. There’s always an Amazon link at the top that you can use at any time to find results for your search on Amazon.

This is clearly yet another opportunity for Amazon to push its own services, and to give you one more avenue to purchase products using Amazon.

7. Tablet Utility Apps are Not Very Useful

One last reason the Amazon Fire 10 is a terrible tablet is the pre-installed utility apps.

If you tap the Utilities icon, you’ll see a list of apps like a calendar, clock, weather, maps, and more.

These are all such bare-bones apps that they’re essentially useless. 

The Maps app does let you search for locations and build an itinerary, but it lacks even a quarter of the features you’d find on a mapping app like Google Maps.

The Calendar, Clock, and Calculator utilities are even less functional then similar apps that come standard on your smartphone.

The only somewhat useful utility is the Weather app. 

This senses your location (or lets you search for others), and shows everything you’d need to know like current weather, high/low temps, precipitation, sunrise and sunset, and a forecast at the bottom.

As you can see, the few redeeming qualities of the Amazon Fire 10 tablet hardly make up for everything it’s lacking.

If you are a very Amazon-centric customer and don’t mind everything you do online focused entirely on Amazon products and services, then none of this should bother you. But if, like most people, you use and own a variety of products and services – most of these limitations will eventually have you setting aside the tablet for some more useful mobile device.

Roku Streaming Stick Plus vs Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K: Which is Better?

Both the Roku Streaming Stick Plus and the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K are fantastic, affordable streaming devices with huge libraries of content. Each one gives users access to some of the best programming that TV and movies have to offer, as well as more “hidden” content that you might not find elsewhere.

On the other hand, both the Roku Streaming Stick Plus and the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K can seem oddly similar at times, which makes it hard to narrow down which of the two is the better option. In short, both are great choices, but the one you should choose depends on your other preferences.

Both Have Loads of Content

The main concern with any streaming device is exactly how much streaming content it grants access to. After all, no one wants to invest in a product that will only let them stream two of the dozens of major services, right?

The good news is that both Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K and Roku Streaming Stick Plus have large amounts of content available, including all the major streaming networks. You can access Netflix, Hulu, Disney+, and any other service you can think of from either of these devices—although, naturally, Prime Video takes center stage with the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K.

Roku Streaming Stick Plus does have a bit of a leg up in terms of content, though. It has more channels than any other platform out there, although many of those channels are just curated lists of YouTube videos. It might not sound like much, but it’s hard to pass up the chance to find quality YouTube content that might not otherwise show up in your algorithm.

Roku Streaming Stick Plus also provides users access to the Roku Channel: a free, ad-supported network. It’s a lot like free networks like Pluto TV or Peacock. You may see a few ads, but everyone likes a commercial break from time to time.

Roku Streaming Stick Plus Is the King of Search

Although both platforms have quality search engines, Roku Streaming Stick Plus clearly takes the crown. It has a robust search function that allows you to find content. If you’re looking for a movie and it’s available on a streaming service, Roku Streaming Stick Plus will find it—period.

You can type in the name of a movie, and Roku will list every provider of that film—free and paid—in descending order from least expensive to most expensive. If it’s a movie you need to rent off Amazon Prime, you can easily see the prices.

The search function saves you a lot of effort in terms of loading up individual services and using their built-in search engines to check for content. You can even search across services you don’t have installed.

The search function isn’t limited to just movie names, either. You can search for specific actors or directors and watch someone’s entire filmography. If you’re a hardcore fan of an actor, this is a great way to see everything they’ve ever been in.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K has a similarly robust search engine, but it prioritizes Prime Video content ahead of everything else. Roku Streaming Stick Plus doesn’t care what services you use, and feels more user-friendly in that regard.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K Is Great for Prime Users

Despite Roku Streaming Stick Plus’s numerous strengths, it doesn’t include a smart assistant as part of its programming. Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K gives users access to Alexa and her many skills. Aside from the obvious functions like controlling the smart home, adding to your calendar, and similar options, Alexa can play content for you with just a simple request.

You can ask Alexa to play a specific movie or show, perform a search, and much more. If you’re watching a movie and see a particularly tasty-looking dish, all you have to do is ask Alexa to add that to your shopping list. It’s an all-in-one function that particularly benefits those already in the Amazon ecosystem.

Both Platforms Stream 4K

No one can deny the appeal of 4K programming, especially when you take one look at just how good a movie like Moana looks on the big screen with crisp, clear HDR. That said, it often comes at a price.

Both the Roku Streaming Stick Plus and the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K provide the highest possible resolution along with HDR. The Roku Streaming Stick Plus is available for $50. The Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K is the same price (although at the time of writing, a limited-time deal put it at $38.)

With 4K TVs becoming more affordable day by day, it is worth investing in a streaming stick capable of handling 4K content, even if you don’t yet own a TV that can fully display it. 

Which Is Easier to Use?

Unlike many other streaming options, the Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K and Roku Streaming Stick Plus both include remotes. This makes them unique in a world where smart phones have become the de facto control devices. However, it also makes it more appealing to a wider range of people, especially those that aren’t as comfortable with technology.

The remotes include voice controls, too. You can simply request the content you want, which is faster than surfing through numerous menus. However, true ease of use boils down to the interface–and in that regard, the Roku Streaming Stick Plus wins.

Although the Roku Streaming Stick Plus’s interface is a bit dated, it is intuitive and easy to understand. You can more easily find your favorite streaming services than on the Fire TV Stick 4K.

Which Is Better?

Overall, Roku Streaming Stick Plus is a better purchase. It ticks more of the boxes that make it an appealing purchase than the Fire TV Stick 4K, especially to people who aren’t overly familiar with technology. The ease of use and search functionality, as well as the broad range of content, make Roku Streaming Stick Plus the clear choice.

On the other hand, if you regularly use Amazon, have a smart home full of Alexa products, and you’re fully immersed in the Amazon ecosystem, then the Fire TV Stick 4K is definitely worth your consideration. The diehard Amazon user will find more use out of the Fire TV Stick 4K than out of Roku Streaming Stick Plus.

Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K vs Amazon Fire TV Cube: What’s the Difference?

There are hundreds of different streaming options available today, and Amazon is home to two of the most popular: the Fire TV Stick 4K and Fire TV Cube. Though their names might be similar, each device has different strengths and weaknesses that can influence which one is the better choice for you.

With such similar names, it can be difficult to tell the differences between what each one does. Amazon’s poor naming scheme aside, this article will take a look at the differences between the Fire TV Stick 4K and the Fire TV Cube and help you decide which device to buy.

Design, Price, and Specs

The Amazon Fire TV Stick 4K is the most affordable option if you’re on a budget. At just $50, this device is simple: you plug an HDMI dongle into your television and control it via a remote or through voice commands. You access content by switching your television to the right input. 

See? Easy. For the most part, you will never see the Fire TV Stick 4K. Its design means it stays hidden behind your television, eliminating unsightly cords. 

The Fire TV Cube, on the other hand, is a larger device. It resembles an Alexa smart speaker, with four buttons atop the cube and built-in speakers and microphones for the Alexa functionality. It is also the most expensive Amazon streaming option at $100, but the most powerful too. 

The Fire TV Cube has 16 GB of internal storage as well as 2 GB of memory and supports both far-field and near-field voice support thanks to its internal speakers. You can also speak directly into the remote to control it, or to any connected Alexa speaker in your home. 

The Cube supports Dolby Atmos audio as well as 7.1 surround sound, HDMI audio passthrough, and 2 channel stereo. The box includes an IR extender cable, too, if you wanted to use the Cube to control something like a sound bar. 

The specs for the Fire TV Stick 4K are more limited, but still impressive for such a small device. It has 8 GB of internal storage and is compatible with a wide range of different IR devices, but lacks a dedicated IR port like the Cube. It also requires the remote for voice control, although a connected Echo speaker can also issue commands to the Fire TV Stick 4K.

Content And Resolution

Both the Fire TV Stick 4K and the Fire TV Cube provide access to 4K content, as well as HDR, HDR10+, and more.

Both provide access to all major streaming services, including Netflix, Hulu, Prime Video (obviously), Disney Plus, and many more. According to Amazon, that adds up to more than 500,000 shows and movies. They aren’t limited solely to those devices though. You can also use your Fire TV Stick 4Kor Fire TV Cube to display connected Alexa-compatible cameras.

For instance, say you have a baby monitor with a camera. You can ask Alexa to show you the nursery, and a live stream of your child will appear on-screen. This feature, along with the ability to stream pictures and video saved to your Amazon account, give both of these devices much more functionality than just streaming content. 

Voice Controls

The Fire TV Stick 4K allows you to search and play content, control volume levels, and more through the remote. Just press and hold the voice button and issue the command to Alexa. While easy to use, it’s not quite as easy as it would be if it offered easier voice controls.

The Fire TV Cube, on the other hand, doesn’t require a button. You can speak to it from anywhere in the room. The microphones always listen for the wake word, which allows you to control it without searching for the remote. Thanks to the Fire TV Cube’s numerous ports, you can control more devices through voice control than you can with the Fire Stick. 

That said, both devices come with a remote, which makes them a bit easier to use for people that are not quite as tech savvy. It also provides an alternative control scheme if you aren’t comfortable with the idea of an always-listening device in your home. 

Why Choose One Over the Other?

Both the Fire TV Stick 4K and the Fire Cube serve similar functions, so you might wonder why one is any better than the other. It essentially boils down to your intended use for each.

The standard Fire TV Stick 4K is the best option for those with 4K televisions that want to keep their costs down. It allows access to streaming services at a lower cost than the other options Amazon offers while still retaining the same convenient controls.

If budget isn’t a concern and you want the most powerful Amazon-based streaming box with expandability for other accessories, the Fire TV Cube is the best option. It’s only $50 more than the Fire TV Stick 4K, offers much more functionality, and is the most powerful option overall.

If you don’t have a 4K TV, there may not seem to be much point in picking up either of these devices. 4K is the way of the future, and eventually all content will be streamed at that resolution. Even if you do not yet own one, purchasing either of these Amazon devices can be thought of as future-proofing your entertainment. 

Chromecast Vs Android TV: Which is Better?

Chromecast and Android TV are both Google-branded devices–a fact that proves confusing when shopping for a streaming device. Both services provide similar features, but they also differ from one another in major ways. 

This guide will break down the difference between Chromecast and Android TV to help you understand how they differ and decide which of the two is the right choice for your streaming needs.

What is Chromecast?

Originally, Chromecast was a USB-powered dongle that plugged into your TV’s HDMI port that enabled streaming. Now, however, the name refers more to the branding. While there are still Chromecast dongles available for purchase, the service is built-in to more modern televisions–no dongle required.

Chromecast differs from other streaming services in that it doesn’t have an interface. There is no home screen or menu to select the content you want. Chromecast acts as a receiver, so you can cast content directly to it from your phone or other device. 

The casting protocol is referred to as Google Cast. It’s what enables you to cast from your phone to the dongle, and it isn’t limited to just videos. You can cast YouTube, photos, and much more. With the right Google app, you can even livestream your own face–a great party trick for freaking out guests if you want to act like Zordon. 

What is Android TV?

Android TV is an operating system. More specifically, it’s a version of the Android operating system that is designed for media devices. It’s often found in set-top devices like the Nvidia Shield, but it is also used as the default OS for many smart television brands. 

Unlike Chromecast, Android TV has a home screen. It functions much like any smart TV does, with a series of different menus and options. You can use Android TV to launch multiple streaming services and even play games. 

One thing to note is that Android TV also uses the Google Cast protocol, which means you can cast content to your Android TV exactly as if it were a Chromecast. There may be minute differences in the way content displays, but the functionality is the same.

This means that you can use an Android TV exactly as you would a Chromecast. With that in mind, you might be asking: what’s the point of Chromecast? 

Chromecast Vs Android TV Features

As we mentioned earlier, there is a lot of overlap in feature sets between the Chromecast and Android TV. 

Chromecast can receive content from other services and allow you to play Netflix, Hulu, and other services on a non-smart TV. Android TV can do all of this and more. 

You can stream content to your Android TV, but it also has built-in services. You can login to your Netflix, Hulu, and other accounts directly through the OS and play through the TV itself. If Android TV is installed on a set-top box, the same concept still applies–you just need to turn on the device to make it work. 

Android TV also works with lesser-known streaming services like Red Bull TV and TED, as well as bigger companies like Starz and HBO Max. You can also stream Live TV, sports, news, Twitch, and more. According to Android TV, users have access to more than 700,000 different movies and shows.

If you’re looking for different entertainment, you can access games through the Google Play store and download and play them on your Android TV. Pair it with a controller for a better gaming experience. 

Chromecast vs Android TV: Which is Better?

The largest difference between the two devices is price. A single Chromecast dongle is significantly more affordable than an Android TV. 

One of the lowest priced options for an Android TV is the Nvidia Shield at roughly $150 or so. Comparatively, a third-generation Chromecast will run you just $30. That said, determining which of the two is the better option is difficult, especially given the feature overlap.

From a pure cost standpoint, the Chromecast offers streaming capabilities (provided you have a smartphone) for a budget price, with 2020 Chromecast models offering 4K streaming too. It works with most TVs, and can be an easy way to set up streaming without breaking the bank.

On the other hand, Android TV has far more features and can do everything the Chromecast can do–but it costs significantly more. There are a few budget options if you want to avoid a set-top device. A few 32-inch televisions from HiSense run on the Android TV operating system. 

Android TV’s feature list also makes it a better overall investment, too. If you’re on a budget, go for Chromecast–but if you can afford it, invest in the Android TV. It does everything Chromecast can do and more and will give you a much better return on your investment. 

16 Best Smartphone Accessories for Traveling

Smartphones have changed how we communicate, meet, and explore our world.

Today, you can book a hotel or flight, navigate virtual maps and take beautiful sunset photos easily from your phone wherever you’re traveling to.

Knowing which accessories are truly useful while on the go isn’t always easy. That’s why we’ve compiled a list of accessories for traveling that will make your phone even better.

Best Smartphone Accessories for Traveling

From protective cases and screen protectors, to add-on camera lenses for wide-angle shots and virtual meetings, make sure you pack the following best smartphone accessories for your next travels.

1. Screen Protector

A screen protector is a defense barrier between your smartphone’s glass touch screen and the surrounding environment that ensures your device is crack and scratch free. When choosing a screen protector, find one that’s compatible with your phone and durable.

However, the screen protector only covers the front of your phone’s screen, which is why you’ll need a durable protective case to secure the back from water, shock, dings and other types of damage.

Check out our guide on the best screen protectors for Android and iPhone.

2. Smartphone Case

Few things are worse than dropping your smartphone and picking it up only to find that the screen is cracked. 

A sturdy protective case for your Android smartphone or iPhone can prevent any drops, dents, scratches or bumps on your phone without being overly bulky in your pocket. If you spend a lot of time at the beach or by the pool, look for a case that’s water-resistant so your phone won’t get wet.

3. Waterproof Case

Dropping your phone in the pool or muddy puddles while on vacation is a next-level tragedy. Fortunately, you can prevent disaster and take the anxiety off your shoulders with a waterproof case or bag for your phone and keep it safe wherever you go.

Many waterproof case designs allow you to submerge your smartphone under water and capture great videos or photos. Plus, the case keeps your phone dry, safe, and has more space to stash other things on there like your credit cards or cash.

4. Cable Charger (Android, iOS)

Cable chargers are the most essential smartphone accessories on this list as they’ll ensure your smartphone never runs out of juice. Whether you’re using an Android or iPhone, you need to pick a cable charger that’s durable and compatible with your device.

The materials these chargers come in include braided nylon, stainless steel or gold plating. If you have an iPhone and need a third-party cable charger, find one that’s compatible and certified like the SyncWire iPhone charger Lightning cable, so that it works as expected with your device.

If you need a fancy charging cable for Android phones, try the iSeeker nylon-braided tangle-free cable with extra charge and sync, higher durability and increased flexibility.

Check our guide to USB cables and how they work before snagging up one for your smartphone.

5. Power Bank

While traveling, your smartphone may quickly run out of juice and you’ve barely started your vacation. One of the reasons for this is taking endless videos or photos, or streaming movies and music on the go.

With a portable power bank, you can keep your phone topped off while on the go or at your Airbnb. This way, you can fully capture more memories and not have to deal with a dead phone battery.

6. Wall Charger

If you’re traveling by air, it’s not always easy to find a power outlet because more often than not, they’re all taken. With a multiport USB charger (with both USB type-A and type-C), you can juice up your smartphone in no time before boarding your flight.

Look for a wall charger with fast-charging, versatility and compact form factor, which is necessary when traveling. Multiple ports also ensure that you can charge two things at once without spending too much time at the airport charging station.

Make sure you carry the charging cable that came with your smartphone or invest in one of the USB cable chargers we’ve mentioned. And, don’t forget that if traveling to Europe, you may need a power adapter, too.

7. Selfie Stick

Selfie sticks have evolved over the years thanks to their growing popularity, especially with the social media selfie craze that started a few years ago.

Today, selfie sticks come in compact sizes for easy portability, with various add-ons, waterproof or Bluetooth so you can make breathtaking travel photos. They’re also good to have when you want to capture large groups or when there’s no one else around to snap pictures for you.

Some selfie sticks can extend up to 30 inches long and come with a wrist strap, which makes it easy to capture your entire surroundings with extra safety and security.

8. Handheld Video Stabilizer

If you take lots of videos to document your travels, a handheld video stabilizer is a good smartphone travel accessory. This gadget offers steady and smooth filming so that you never post a shaky video again.

The video stabilizer comes with a magnetic ring holder and phone clamp that allow you to attach your phone to the stabilizer for perfect filming on the go.

Plus, it comes with a creative dynamic zoom shot that delivers a Hollywood feel, gesture control for snapping pics or starting videos with just a gesture, and it’s compatible with most smartphones.

9. Smartphone Camera Lens

Most smartphones today can take beautiful photos and videos thanks to the multiple lenses that allow you to change perspective on the fly.

However, if yours doesn’t have such a great camera or has only one lens, you can use an external smartphone camera lens to amp up your smartphone photos and videos.

10. Selfie Flash Light

Selfie flash lights ensure that you take good lighting with you everywhere. Most of these portable smartphone flash lights are easy to use and attach to your device easily.

Plus, the light comes with LED bulbs for adequate lighting so you can take great selfies especially in low light scenes. The lights are rechargeable and you can select the intensity of the light that you like the most.

The light also comes with a clamp that holds well and is designed with scratch-resistant and anti-slip sponge to prevent it from falling off and protect your phone from scratches. You can also use it as a great emergency light for dark circumstances.

A good alternative to buying a selfie flash light is installing a front flash camera app. The app provides simulated  camera flashes if your phone doesn’t come with a built-in front camera, so you can better light your selfies.

If you’re using an Android smartphone, you can download the Selfie Master front flash camera app or Selfshot if you use an iPhone.

11. Bluetooth Speaker

A Bluetooth speaker is good to have when you’re biking, hiking, swimming in the pool or lazing at the beach. These speakers are better than smart speakers especially where there’s unstable or no WiFi at all, and they’re great for the outdoors.

There are many Bluetooth speakers that deliver good or even better audio quality than smart speakers and work with any smartphone. Some Bluetooth speakers are waterproof, double as a speakerphone, and come in multiple colors with great battery life between charges.

Check out our list of the best Bluetooth speakers for more of the best options worth considering, or pick a pair of the best Bluetooth earbuds.

12. Car Mounts

A car mount is a great smartphone accessory to have, especially if you’ll be doing road trips. The mount holds and secures your phone safely while you drive for a smooth and hassle-free trip.

Not only that, but you can also use your phone and look at directions hands-free while driving. You can choose a magnetic car mount or a non-magnetic one that wirelessly charges your device while securing your phone in place.

13. Activity Tracker

If you want to keep track of your health while you’re traveling, a smartwatch is the perfect wrist companion to your smartphone. You can view activity tracking, fitness information, and get a second screen for notifications.

Plus, smartwatches come with various connectivity options, sensors, and track your sleep, activity, steps and general fitness. Some smartwatches support measurements like stress tracking, blood oxygen levels, and are fully waterproof allowing you to use your watch while swimming or underwater.

More advanced smartwatches include GPS and LTE so you can leave your phone in your car or hotel and track your runs or listen to your favorite music on the go.

Take a look at our customized list of smartwatches and fitness trackers to carry with you.

14. Picture Keeper Connect

It’s easy to take photos and videos while traveling, but you’ll need to find space to hold all your memories and remember to keep them backed up if you’re using cloud storage.

With Picture Keeper Connect, you don’t have to worry about how much space you have or keeping them backed up. The little gadget plugs into your phone and has an accompanying app that backs up your files automatically to the built-in storage.

You can also copy your files to other devices that have the app installed, or send photos to and from your laptop. The device doesn’t need mobile data or WiFi to back up or share your photos with outers, making it ideal if you’re in a place with slow, expensive or no internet access.

15. Portable Safe

A portable safe is a little bag that you can fill with valuables including your smartphone and keep them safe. The safe comes with a stainless steel wire mesh embedded in cut-resistant poly canvas fabric, which you can pull to shut and lock your belongings for maximum security.

On top of that, you can lock the safe securely with its TSA accepted three-dial combination lock and cable the bag to fixtures such as furniture in your hotel room, a beach chair or tree to prevent theft where items need to be left unattended.

The bag can carry your credit cards, money, wallet, passport, IDs, and smartphone among other valuables. Plus, it’s water resistant and has a slash safe vault for peace of mind and carry handles and convenience.

16. Foldable Keyboard

A foldable keyboard is an essential smartphone accessory if you don’t want to travel with your laptop. This way, you can send simple emails, quickly edit a document without awkward auto-correct mixups.

Smartphone Travel Accessories

Whether you’re going on a month-long adventure or a quick weekend trip, your smartphone is already a hub for all your trips. 

You can watch your favorite movies with friends on Netflix, carry your hotel reservations or boarding passes, read free books, and even organize photo albums on social media.

Our list of must have smartphone accessories is by no means exhaustive, but they’re worth adding to your carry-on bag so you can travel more easily with your device.