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Get your techies the gifts they really want this year

November 26, 2014
 / HCSS / 

Femi_Ariyo-1My wife revoked my right to receive high-tech gifts about two years ago. Everyone in our household gets gizmos and gadgets for Christmas except me.

As it turns out, I have a bad habit of returning every techie gift I get. It’s not like my wife is a tech novice. She does her research and picks up on clues--sometimes even hints I’ve unknowingly dropped. But it rarely helps.

She recently bought me a Samsung Gear 2 Smartwatch, and I returned it the very next day because I thought the watch was useless without the phone. She once bought me a DSLR camera; it too went back to the store. So did the home theater speakers, portable navigation system, mp3 player, and just about everything else I’ve received.

There were a few notable exceptions--the “perfect gifts” like my Microsoft Xbox, Harmon Kardon Sound Sticks 2, and Sony PS4. But the vast majority have been returned, which led to one harsh consequence: no more gizmos for me until I can get my act together.

I’m working on that, hoping to rebuild a healthy gift-exchange relationship with my wife.

Don’t let this be you this holiday season. Leave this article around your home or follow the suggestions to find the perfect gift for that special technology-savvy someone.

My Tech Top 10

  1. MICA Bracelet by Intel: The perfect accessory for the connected woman. Fashionable, smart and forward looking, with two-day battery life, and built-in mobile broadband from AT&T. Go ahead and leave your phone behind, and let this bracelet do its work. Priced from $495 to $1,000.

  2. Amazon Echo: Call it the in-home assistant. Echo will set reminders, get recipes, play your music library, access Wikipedia, and provide up-to-the-minute weather and news from NPR and ESPN. Priced from $99 to $199.

  3. Apple iMac with Retina 5K Display: The newest Apple iMac produces more color and has more pixels than the human eye can see;  all the more reason you need it. Starting at $2499.

  4. iPad Air 2: Thinner, lighter, faster, and better display. Starting at $499.

  5. Surface Pro 3: The Surface Pro 3 isn’t a just a tablet; it's a desktop replacement. It runs Windows 8 operating system and has the latest processor from Intel. Priced starting at $799.

  6. Sony PS4 and Xbox One: Next-Gen console wars will never end. Why choose a side when you can get both? Priced at $399 and $349 respectively.

  7. Samsung 4K Curved Display: Available in 55”, 65”, and 78”. Smart TV, 4K, and curved display. Starting at $2499.

  8. IRIS+: A completely autonomous drone that allows you to sketch a flight plan on your tablet or phone. It can even take off and land all by itself. Starting at $750.

  9. Sonos HiFi Wireless Speakers: Wireless speakers designed for every room in your home. Sonos app allows you to stream music to each room or group rooms. Starting at $199.

  10. Home automation kits like Insteon, Philips, LittleBitsNest learning thermostats and DropCam: all are great products vying for your dollars this holiday season. Check out IFTTT (If This Then That), a website that allows you to build automation “recipes” around various services and resources. For example, you can build a recipe that sets your Nest thermostat to a certain temperature when you exit a geo-location.

Have a gift idea that should have made the list? Add it in the comments section below. Happy holidays!



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