A recent survey by uswitch, the comparison site for phones and broadband, found that parents will, on average, send kids back to school with £270 of gadgets in their backpacks. In these days where tech costs ever less, that's quite a sum but almost a third of under-16s carry around £400 worth of kit!

If you're looking to equip your kids with a new phone, USB battery pack or other great-value gear, we've rounded up the lot. In fact, if you're heading off to do your A-levels or going off to university, the kit below will appeal just as much.

Back to school 2015: best laptops

You can buy a basic laptop for less than £200 these days, but you will get better specs if you spend between £450 and £600. For most people, this is unnecessary, though. A year ago, your only real option for under £250 was a Google Chromebook. While Chromebooks are good for some people, you'll have more freedom if you opt for Windows 8.1 (which can be upgraded for free to Windows 10).

Here's our list of the best budget laptops

And if you're interested in what Google has to offer, here are the best Chromebooks you can buy right now.

Back to school 2015: best laptops


 

Back to school 2015: best phones

Like laptops, it's amazing what you get get for very little money now. Even without a contract, a smartphone can cost as little as £40-50. We recommend spending a bit more: around £80-100 and avoiding 'free' handsets that come tied to lengthy contracts which end up costing way more than the phone itself. Instead, get a pay-as-you-go SIM separately. Here are the best SIM-only deals.

We've reviewed all the best budget smartphones on sale now, so you can make sure you spend your hard-earned money wisely.

Back to school 2015: best cheap phones

Back to school 2015: best tablets

Tablets are a great substitute for a laptop if you don't need to do much in the way of creating and editing documents. Our current favourite cheap tablets include the Tesco Hudl 2 and Amazon's Fire HD 6, but that's not to say there aren't other bargains.

We've reviewed a selection of the latest budget tablets, but if you're looking for a tablet for younger kids, do check out our chart of best children's tablets.

Back to school 2015: best tablets

Back to school 2015: best power banks

Phones - more so than tablets - need recharging often. The modern way is to carry around a so-called power bank: a portable battery to which you can connect a smartphone or tablet using the USB cable that came with it. Again, there are lots of bargains to be had, with some costing less than £10!

Here are 20 of the best portable chargers

Back to school 2015: best power banks


Back to school 2015: best Bluetooth speakers

The speakers built into phones and tablets are largely no good for music, but it doesn't cost much to buy a decent speaker. Most Bluetooth speakers come with built-in batteries so you can play tunes from your phone wirelessly wherever you are (except perhaps the classroom).

Some speakers have a full-size USB connector and can even charge your phone.

Here's our chart of the top 20 best portable speakers

Back to school 2015: best Bluetooth speakers