The 4 Cables You Need in Your Home Right Now

We’re a society constantly linked in and on our phones. If you Glance around any line, restaurant, grocery store, home, or workplace, and you’re sure to see at least a few people (if not the majority) tapping or scrolling away on their phone. The Apple iPhone seemed to lead the charge with the rise of smartphones, with other big tech companies following suit. Just shy of 400 iPhones are sold every minute and there are over 100 million iPhone users in the United States alone. There are currently nine generations of the iPhone and as of 2015, it was the second largest smartphone vendor in the world in terms of shipment.

One of the latest changes that Apple has introduced is how we charge our phones — this time with a lightning cable instead of the more traditional USB chargers. However, there are a dozen other cables, cords, and wires that we need to link our devices and stay connected. Let’s talk about the basic cords and cables you’ll need to stay connected and to transfer data and information easily between devices. Having the necessary accessories on hand can make your life much easier in the long run.

What Basic Items Will I Need?

If you have a computer, a smartphone, a printer, a TV, and Internet access, you’re well set up. However, all of these things need to be connected to each other at some point. Here are the basic cables you’ll need:

In addition to these cables, having a surge protector on hand is a good idea to keep your devices safe from any unexpected power spikes. You may also need other miscellaneous USB cables for cameras, tablets, and other devices.

Why Do I Need Each of These Cables?

Ethernet cable
An Ethernet cable will allow you to access the Internet at a greater speed and connection than WiFi can often provide. It’s a good backup if the WiFi should go out or you need a better connection speed. It connects your modem, router, and computer, and is always a good item to have on hand.

Given your needs, you might want to opt for Cat5e cables, Cat6 cables, or maybe Cat6a cables. If you’re not sure which to use, you can consult a tech expert at an electronics store or search online.

Lightning Cable
A lightning cable will keep your devices charged and ready for use. It’ll also help connect your phone to your computer or another device, for easy transference of data, such as pictures or messages. You can also backup your phone’s data this way, either to a computer or an external hard drive. Many devices have switched over to the lightning cable popularized by the Apple products, but you may need a different kind of charging cable if you don’t use one of those devices.

For the ultimate convenience, keep a charging cable at your home, workplace, and anywhere else you spend a good amount of time.

USB printing cable
This one is pretty self-explanatory. A USB printing cable will connect your printer to your computer, enabling you to print whatever documents you need. In some cases, you may be able to connect those two devices wirelessly, but it’s good to have a cable on hand, in case something goes wrong with your wireless network and you need to print immediately.

HDMI cables
HDMI cables are useful for streaming audio or visuals from one device to another. A common use is to hook up a laptop or tablet to your TV with an HDMI cable and stream a TV show or movie using the Internet onto your TV. It’s great for making entertainment systems simpler — get rid of those unnecessary cables and replace it with one HDMI cable.

Keep your tech life simplified by knowing what cables you’ll need in your everyday life. Having them on hand and knowing how to use them can save you time and unnecessary frustration.

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