For the geeks among us who love gadgets, toys, technology and any combination thereof, this is truly an amazing time to be alive. But you know who it’s even more amazing for? Those among us who need to buy an awesome gift for a gadget geek this holiday season.
For the geek you think is probably pretty cool (under $25)
Whether it’s a Secret Santa giftee or a mom’s new boyfriend type of situation, most people have a geek in their life that they want to wrap up a rad present for…but maybe without cracking the piggy bank right open. These are your three top choices.
A jam-anywhere speaker: the VicTsing Wireless Speaker is built to pound out some tunes pretty much anywhere – in the shower, at the lake, at a construction site, you name it and with the water-resistant, shockproof, dustproof, Bluetooth-enabled VicTsing your geek can crank that Chromeo. (Still cool, right?)
A notepad worth using: the Boogie Board eWriter takes something everyone needs, a notepad, and makes it cool enough to actually use and therefore actually benefit from. Imagine a world where the fridge is never empty of milk, Todd is never left sitting on the curb after band practice, and your mother-in-law doesn’t call four times in one afternoon because your husband actually picked up the phone and called her thanks to a death threat written on the Boogie Board, thank you very much.
A…sigh…a selfie stick: a selfie stick is actually the perfect gift because almost everyone wants one, and pretty much no one can bring themselves to buy one. The Mpow Bluetooth Selfie Stick is the best of the bunch as it has a small telescoping build, a Bluetooth remote, good battery life, and is made of silicone to protect the phone.
For the geek you want to impress (under $75)
If you’ve got a good friend or a sibling you’re looking to wow (or looking to get into the good graces of) then this is the category for you: awesome toys that seem like they cost way more than they did. If it weren’t so easy to Google a gadget’s price you’d probably go down as a hero.
An un-droney drone: the people who are really into drones already have a drone, let’s be clear, but if you know someone who’s a bit intrigued by, say, aerial video or plain-fun flying, the UDI Voyager U845 should fit the bill. This bad boy looks like a UFO instead of having the standard spindly drone build and features six motors, LED lights, a built-in 720p video camera, and it can be controlled using a smartphone app if your geek would prefer that to a standard controller.
A pint-sized smart assistant: a smart home assistant is a must-have gadget this year, and with the Google Home Mini’s sub-$75 price tag, it’s a can-have gadget as well. This little cutie does almost everything the standard sized Google Home does including answer questions, play music, stream shows, set alarms and timers, read info and news from the internet, and control a whole host of smart devices.
Streaming made easy: the only way the Roku Streaming Stick+ could make streaming any easier is if it projected your favorite episodes of Atlanta directly onto the inside of your eyelids while you recline in a massage chair. It plugs directly into a monitor or television (doesn’t have to be a smart TV) and it’s controlled by a remote that’s so simple you should probably actually buy this setup for your parents.
For the geek you really, really love (budget in the hundreds)
If you’ve got a husband you can’t tear away from World of Warcraft, a wife who made a time-lapse video of her hike up Trolltunga, a best friend who’s hiding from the FAA due to a flight path incident, then you’ve got a candidate for a truly incredible gift, like one of these three.
The camera to end all cameras:
think of the gadget geek you love most. Don’t you want that person to stop living in actual reality, and start living in virtual reality? The Vuze virtual reality camera combines virtual reality with 3D and 360-degree capabilities with high-def video and audio for the most uncompromisingly lifelike captured experience from a device that is so incredibly easy to operate.
The best new gaming console (currently, anyway): if you already know your geek is a PlayStation or Xbox lifer then go ahead and skip to the next gadget, but if you’ve got an open-minded gamer, the Nintendo Switch is one of the most exciting gaming consoles to be released in recent years. It’s both an at-home and portable system, can be docked with a TV or used stand-alone on a tabletop, ensuring your geek never has to face a world without his or her favorite games at hand.
The gadget that almost makes fitness seem cool: we all know and love someone who absolutely lives for being active, and even though we all think that person is very weird, we want them to be happy, so we’re going to think about buying them the Fitbit Ionic fitness smartwatch. Sleek and user-friendly, this watch tracks activities and sleep, has GPS and a heartrate tracker, delivers guided workouts, can accompany your geek into the ocean or pool, and can even make payments. It’s never been so easy to be fit…for a certain type of person.
Hopefully you’ve happened upon a great idea for your very favorite gadget geek. If somehow you haven’t, remember that there’s still time to take up knitting and wrap up a little something ironic for your tech-focused loved ones.