The Best Tech Toys

Working as a marketing consultant, there are two main fears in life–that you’ll be out of touch during a crisis, and that if your data goes down, your life will follow shortly thereafter. Here are my favorite indispensable business tech toys.

  • Carbonite. This online backup system is cheap ($50/year) and saves everything offsite–automatically! I haven’t had to use its recovery function yet, but am swimming in peace of mind.
  • A mobile broadband card. Admittedly, the friendly Sprint store gentleman who first tried to install it on my laptop ended up causing a dire problem, causing me to come close to losing all the data on my computer (which would have required me to make use of my Carbonite backup system). I’m also intrigued by new reports about Virgin’s mobile broadband service, which uses the Spring 3G system but appears to be both cheaper and have fewer contractual strings attached. Any experiences with it, readers?
  • Amazon Kindle. I know, the iPad is hot hot hot. But the Kindle’s E-Ink screen (not backlit, computer-style) is easy on the eyes, super-light, and perfect for keeping up with your daily newspapers.
  • iPhone. Ironically for a phone, the worst part of this sleek and amazing device (besides their new “no unlimited usage” shtick) is the phone. Verizon’s cellular service kicks AT&T’s behind, but that’s life under a monopoly, folks. Beautiful phone, amazing still and videocameras, and a world o’ apps.
  • A landline. These days, this is the most transgressive part of the list. Want to cover your back when AT&T’s networks are overloaded, in case of disaster or emergency, or just as a professional beachhead? Go old school and have an “old-timey” landline. There, I said it.

What are your tech essentials?

Dorie Clark is a marketing strategy consultant who has worked with clients including Google, Yale University, and the National Park Service. Listen to her podcasts or follow her on Twitter.