If you think Bluetooth headset  when someone says “smartphone accessory,” you probably aren’t aware of the latest add-ons available for your favorite mobile device.

Whether you’re into music or gaming, photography or fitness, there are thousands of ways to enhance the functionality (and fun) of your smartphone.

Accessories also make for an ideal holiday gift, and you might be able to score a great deal over Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

The following are a half-dozen recommendations.


Turn your phone into a virtual reality headset with Samsung Gear VR ($99.99). As long as you have one of the supporting phones – such as a Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+, or Note5 – snap the device into the eyewear, launch the app and access 360-degree games, videos and other experiences mapped to your head movement (and with 3D spatialized audio, too). Leveraging Oculus Rift’s technology, Gear VR works well, and without the hefty price tag as some of the upcoming VR headsets – providing you have one of the compatible phones, of course.


An ideal smartphone or tablet accessory, especially for devices you can’t add more memory to, the SanDisk Connect Wireless Stick (from $39.99 for 32-gigabytes) emits a Wi-Fi signal, allowing multiple devices to access content at the same time. After you load it up with files from your PC or Mac, unplug it and take it to go. Now, press the small black button and you can access everything wirelessly via the free SanDisk app for iOS and Android, or any computer. Reduce the “Are we there yet?” from the backseat as kids can now watch or listen to what they want on their own device, simultaneously (up to three for streaming video). You can also wirelessly back up photos from your phone to the drive.


Star Wars fans can wear their excitement for the upcoming film – and enjoy good audio at the same time – with SMS Audio’s Star Wars-licensed headphones ($179.95). Choose between R2-D2, Chewbacca, Tie Fighter and Darth Vader artwork, with each of these “Second Edition” headphones (or you might still be able to find last year’s “First Edition” artwork options: Rebel Alliance, Galactic Empire, Storm Trooper and Boba Fett). Regardless, these on-ear and wired headphones feature large 40mm drivers for loud, clear and well-balanced sound; soft memory foam cushions that comfortably match the shape of your ears; and a foldable design and hard-shell travel case.


Dubbed the world’s thinnest all-in-one charger, the PhoneSuit Journey ($79.95) measures just 0.5-inches, yet includes a 3,500mAh rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery, Lighting cable (for Apple iOS devices), microUSB (for most other phones), and integrated and foldable AC wall adaptor for when it’s time to juice up the PhoneSuit Journey. Because both the iOS and microUSB cables are built-in, you don’t have to remember to bring your existing cables with you. Simply pop this battery back-up into your pocket, purse, backpack or glove compartment, and power up your devices when needed.


What’s that? You have big thumbs but a small smartphone? You’re not alone. Logitech’s Bluetooth Multi-Device Keyboard K480 ($49.99) makes it easy to type lengthy documents or emails on any smartphone or tablet. Whether you’re on an iOS (iPad, iPhone, iPod touch), Android or Windows device, this portable keyboard can be used wirelessly with up to three different devices by switching the knob to the desired platform. This full-size QWERTY keyboard also includes shortcut keys and an integrated stand to prop up your device. Available colors are white with grey or black with yellow.


If you’re shopping for a female fitness fan but she doesn’t like the look of activity trackers like Fitbit or Vivofit, consider the fashion-forward Mira ($169.00), a stylish fitness bracelet that can be worn as-is or by removing the opal to clip onto clothing. The Mira counts steps, calories, distance and elevation, and while you can press to check the time and your daily progress on the LED screen, info is also synced with the My Mira app on iOS and Android devices. The water-resistant Mira includes a rechargeable battery and USB charging stand. Choose your color and one of three sizes.

Columnist Marc Saltzman writes on tech devices and trends for USA TODAY. Follow Marc on Twitter: @marc_saltzman. E-mail him at techcomments@usatoday.com.

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