10 Gifts for the Tech Person in your Life

There is no shortage of “Gift Guides for Techies” floating around the internet these days. 'Tis the season, after all. But sadly, I nearly always find these lists to be inadequate because more often than not, they pose no greater use or appeal to a person who is involved in tech than to a person who is not.

Here are some of the strange inclusions on real techie gift guides

Grillbot Automatic Grill CleanerOn list Techies Gift Guide: Best Selling Tech Gifts in 2017 via Brostrick

I think we can all agree that someone took a big leap here. “Hey, you’re into tech. I know the perfect gift for you. A grill cleaner!” Um, what?

KOHLER Moxie 1-Spray ShowerheadOn list Cool Gifts for Tech Lovers via Real Simple

This is a speaker that clips to your showerhead and syncs with your devices...because everyone knows that you’re not a true tech-lover unless you sing in the shower. (Ok actually I do sing in the shower but my performances are accapella and solo, thank you very much.)

Thermacell Heated InsolesOn list 20 Awesome Gadgets and Gift Ideas for Techies via ZDNet

I honestly don’t know how I would react if someone gave me insoles of any kind as a gift. I do, however, feel pretty confident that if someone gave me insoles as a gift because I work in tech I would feel offended on some level.

Here are 10 actual gift ideas for people who are actuallyinvolved in technology

01 Touch Screen Gloves

Apex ETip Gloves. $45 The North Face

Gone are the wintertime days of having to choose between inhaling fresh air and staying connected. Media-compatible gloves are an awesome gift for anyone with a touch screen in their life.

02 Cool Headphones

URBANEARS Plattan ADV Wireless Headphones. $99 URBEANEARS

Over-ear headphones are a tech staple. There are lots of factors to consider when buying headphones including, but not limited to, style, sound-quality and of course, price point. The Urbanears headphones pictured are the ones on my own wish list, and here are a few other options.

from left: Master & Dynamic MW50 Wireless Headphones, $499Beats by Dre Solo 3 Wireless. $299.95Urban Outfitters Wireless Bluetooth Headphones, $39

03 Electronics Cleaning Gadgets

CyberClean High Tech Cleaning Compound$14.49 Amazon
OXO Good Grips Electronics Cleaning Brush$4.99 Amazon
Mini iRoller Reusable Touchscreen Cleaner$19.95 Amazon
Awesome Wipes: Disinfecting Screen Wipes$9.99 Amazon

Ordinarily, cleaning products don't make an appearance on holiday gift guides but I mean come on, keyboard-cleaning slime?! Seriously though, hardcore techie or not, anyone with anything electronic in their life (read: anyone) will appreciate this stuff.

Pro tip: bundle these items together inside a basket or the backpack in #6 for a more substantial present.

04 Washable Keyboard

Logitech Washable Keyboard K310. $69.90 Amazon

Spill your coffee on your keyboard and dunk it in the sink to clean. What could be better? You guys must think my devices are spick-and-span (they aren't).

05 Laptop Sleeve

Felt Laptop Sleeve with Yellow Zipper. $28.81 Etsy

Once, I took my laptop out of my bag to find a giant bleed on my screen, which likely happened because some sort of crumb or other vandal got lodged inside. This is a very expensive repair. It's much cheaper to protect your laptop by separating it from the misfits in your bag with a laptop sleeve that closes. I have scoured the internet to conclude that Etsy has the best variety. 

If you're new to shopping via Etsy, be cautioned that sellers can be from anywhere in the world and shipping is rarely included. If you don't want to pay international shipping, adjust your search parameters before you get your heart set on something that costs more to ship than to purchase. 

Anyway, here are some other style ideas.

from left (all via Etsy): Leather Laptop Sleeve $89.99+Explore World Map Laptop Sleeve, $40+Felt and Leather Laptop Sleeve, $64

06 Water Repellent Backpack

Smart Moderns Laptop Water-Repellent Backpack. $139.99Smart Moderns

There is no anxiety like the anxiety of carrying your devices through a rainstorm. This backpack claims to be water-repellent, which to me is far superior to the merely water resistant status of its counterparts, plus it's got a battery pocket with USB charging.

P.S. I provided the full price, but it's actually on sale for $99.99! (at least, it was at the time this post was written)

07 Cable Protectors

TUDIA Klip Snap On Charging Cable Saver. $7.98 Amazon

I came across these handy little guys that prevent cords and chargers from fraying (and ultimately dying...or worse: igniting). These come in various sizes for different types of cords, and various colors for fun. Not in the market for stocking stuffers? Put them together with the cleaning gadgets posted in #3 to make a bigger gift out of various small gifts.

08 Happy Light

Verilux® HappyLight® 5000 Lux Energy Lamp. $89.99 Bed Bath & Beyond

I'll admit it, occasionally there are days when the only sunlight I see is through the window. Proud of this? No. Alone in this? No. Fortunately, HappyLight technology exists to artificially produce natural light and plenty of the benefits that come with it. What I like about this lamp is that it is neither massive nor hideous, which many of its competitors are.

09 Lap Desk

Bamboo Wood Mobile Lap Desk. $69.95 Etsy

There are about a zillion lap desks on the market, but still so many of us laptop lap-workers don't own one. I found the one pictured on Etsy and it's my favorite (at least from the picture) because it's small-but-not-too-small, has a display dock, and has ventilation holes so that you don't have to worry about it catching on fire or melting because your laptop fan is tired. I also like the way it looks. Bonus: you can specify the size of your laptop and desk-orientation (score, lefties!)

10 A Charging Solution that meets your Lifestyle Needs

Window-Mounted Solar Charger$49.99 Amazon
iPhone Charger Bracelet$150 Fizzm
4-Port USB Car Charger$29.99 The Container Store
Satechi USB Combo Hub$34.99 Amazon

Whatever dreams you have for staying charged, a quick search engine query will prove that someone else has already dreamt it. There are some really creative and brilliant solutions out there. #charginggoals (is that a thing? it should be)

November 13, 2017
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