Look, let’s get right to it. It’s December, the season of giving and receiving – but more importantly giving. Don’t be the person who shows up to the holiday party empty handed or the one who let’s down your favorite tech savvy relative.
As they say, Tis the season…
If you’re the DIY gift type person, good for you, but step on it! You only have two weeks left to knit that sweater and emulate what you saw Stacy W. post on Pinterest. But, if you’re like me and purchase by exercising your fore finger and keyboard numerals, don’t fret’. Stop searching. We’ve got some of our most wanted geeky gifts, we’re sure techie will love too (but don’t blame us on the shipping).
Hot tech gifts for this 2016 holiday season:
Smart Speakers (aka Intelligent Personal Assistants)
In an artificial world once dominated by Siri, Amazon and Google have now gone even farther and harnessed their personal versions of artificial intelligence into “Smart Speakers”. These voice activated devices that work through Bluetooth technology, act as software agents that perform a service or various tasks for someone. They have the innate ability to access information for you whether that be the daily weather, a traffic report or set calendar reminders. Other features include home automation capabilities (turning on and off the lights, controlling the TV and locking doors), access and interpret the internet and of course, play music. With how incredibility dependent humans are becoming with A.I. conversationally, these are the gadgets of tomorrow.
Amazon Echo: $140
Amazon Echo Dot: $40
Google Home: $129
If you still untangle your headphones before a run, you’re living in the past. Cut the cord. Wireless headphones are in no way a new thing, but they are more prevalent and much better. Your traditional companies like Bose and Sony have definitely amplified their listeners’ experience with noise-cancelling technology (and I mean you literally can’t hear anything else) and enhanced sound quality, but other key auditory competitors are giving them a run for their money too. No more are the days of constricted head movements because your headphones are only two feet long – do yourself a favor and go wireless. Trust me, the next pod cast you listen to with Morgan Freeman’s voice over will sound as smooth as silk sheets on a warm night.
Beats Solo 2 Wireless: $200
Bose QuietComfort 35: $350
Sennheiser Momentum 2: $330
Sony MDR-ZX770BT: $148
Apple Watch 2
Team iPhone, where ya at? Apple is back at it again with the second series of their famous watch. Now that they have the wrinkles ironed out, this product packs quite the punch. With built-in GPS, a 50-meter rain jacket (it’s water-proof people) and a much faster dual-core processor, Apple delivers innovative wrist candy that’s sure to please. It features a plethora of cunning new health applications to keep you disciplined through your workouts and motivated to stay true to your fitness goals. You can customize the watch face and choose between an array of bands from traditional leather to woven nylon or even stainless steel. I think it’s time you set the Casio free and treat yourself to the new era of fashion and technology. Better yet, be the wonderful person you are and surprise a loved one.
Apple Watch 2: $369-$1049
How many of you are constantly losing your keys, phone or wallet? We’ve all been there. Whether it’s misplaced or completely lost, at some point, items go missing. It’s a hassle trying to locate them and undeniably stressful attempting to remember where they last were. Thankfully, there’s a solution to this problem. It’s Tile.
Tile is a “tiny Bluetooth tracker and easy-to-use app that helps you find everyday items in seconds.” These little white squares can be attached to key rings, placed in a wallet like a credit card or kept on you in your pocket. Lost your phone? Double tap any one of your Tiles and your phone, even if it’s on silent, will ring. If something that’s attached to a Tile goes missing, use the app (available on both Android and Apple) on your phone to locate it. It’s that simple. Let this stocking-stuffer be the MVP of gifts this year.
1-pack: $30 and under
4-pack: $100 and under
8-pack: $200 and under
16-pack: $300 and under
NES Classic Edition
Donkey Kong, Super Mario Bros. or Pac-Man? I’m a DK guy myself but absolutely loved all Nintendo games. Well, no need to forage through Craigslist or peruse the flea market on an endless search for these pioneers because they are all coming back to life in their original state! This holiday season, Nintendo has replicated and released the 1985 gaming staple for everyone to enjoy. In the box comes 30 pre-installed games, one system and one controller (it is an 80’s gaming device still). The Nintendo Entertainment System Classic Edition. This is easily one of the hottest commodities on the market right now so don’t waste any opportunities!
NES Classic Edition: $60
Virtual Reality Headset
On the complete opposite end of the gaming spectrum than the nostalgic Nintendo system comes virtual reality headsets. The days of playing games on TV are becoming obsolete. Stepping into a virtual world where anything is possible is now the norm. These headsets, whether cabled to a computer or battery powered, replicate a real or fake environment and simulate a user’s experience within that realm. The idea is to create an unforgettable physical experience through a better gaming platform while artificially stimulating one’s senses in the environment. I know I’ve been talking about the future of this or the future of that, but folks, this is the future of it all.
Sony PlayStation VR: $399
Samsung Gear VR: $99
Oculus Rift: $600
HTC Vive: $800
What other tech gifts will you be buying this year? Shoot us an email firstname.lastname@example.org. Happy holidays!