Black Friday is on the opposite end of this week and Cyber Monday is a week away. It’s time to get your shopping list and your own wish list in order! In case you’re having a hard time coming up with items to put on that list, here are some cool gadgets that are fun and functional. 2015 seems to be the year of choices, and it can be good to have choices. If you were nice, you might just find some of these under your Christmas tree this year.
Play mobile with new tablets. Amazon’s new Fire 7″ tablet comes in at $50-a-pop or available as a ‘buy 5, get a 6th free’ pack. This brings tablets closer to the range of stocking stuffers. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Apple’s iPad Pro is large and the bleeding edge of tablet capability. If you’re already in Apple’s ecosystem, that might make more sense to add to your list.
Play it on the big screen. Most of the big brands for set top boxes to stream videos and photos to your TV were refreshed this year. Some support 4K playback while others increased functionality with apps, games, and controllers.
Play it with a subscription. Access to great content can be covered for the entire year with gift cards to popular streaming services:
Play it loud. Headphones can specialize in different areas such as great sound quality, noise cancellation, Bluetooth compatibility, or durability during exercising. Check out these as a start:
- Bose QuietComfort 25 Headphones
- Samsung Gear Circle Bluetooth Headset
- Plantronics BackBeat Fit Bluetooth Headphones
- Audio-Technica ATH-M50x Professional Studio Monitor Headphones
- UE Roll Bluetooth speaker
Play it in high resolution. 4K TVs are topping the charts in Christmas wish lists. There are a variety of brands and sizes to fit your needs. Watch Black Friday and Cyber Monday for available deals.
- Samsung UN60JU6400 60-inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV
- LG Electronics 65UF7700 65-Inch 4K Ultra HD Smart LED TV
Play it longer. Get a battery pack for your smartphone, tablet, and other devices, giving you more time away from an outlet.
Play by yourself. The Passback Football has a flat side so it will bounce off of a wall for quarterbacks to practice their throws or receivers to get more catches.
Do more with the right accessories. USB Type-C is coming for more gadgets. Get your chargers and adapters for the new devices.
- USB-C to Micro USB Adapter
- USB 2.0 Type C (USB-C) to Type A (USB-A) Cable
- USB Type C 6.6 Ft (2M) Braided Cable
- USB Type-C Car Charger
Know what you saw. With a Nikon D3300 DX-format DSLR camera, snap high quality photos of your favorite memories.
Know the outside from your fingertips. Netatmo Weather Station pairs with your phone to give you environment readings wherever you locate the station.
Know entertainment. The Martian was made into a movie and both the book and movie are very entertaining. If your recipient is a science-lover, they will probably enjoy The Martian.
Know privacy. The Smart Girl’s Guide to Privacy is a great read for anybody that needs a crash course in the how and why of managing their privacy. Far too many people need this book.
Know more, simply. XKCD‘s Randall Munroe explains things using the 1000 most common words in Thing Explainer: Complicated Stuff in Simple Words.
Be precise. Bake your recipe using a scale that can pair with your phone/tablet to guide you through a recipe with the Perfect Bake App-Controlled Smart Baking.
Be more aware and healthier with the Microsoft Band 2.
Be ergonomic. The Lumo Lift Posture Coach and Activity Tracker will let you know if your posture slips.
Be adventurous and record it with the GoPro Hero4.
Be confident with a backup. Use a Synology NAS to give everybody a server share with redundant drives and apps to easily backup your data to various cloud providers.
Be comfortable with accessories for your gadgets.
- PadPillow Pillow Stand for tablets
- Anker Multi-Angle Portable Stand for Tablets, E-readers, and smartphones
- Brookstone eComfort Portable Lap Desk
For my own list
For my own wish list, I might put on the Roku 4 or new Chromecast to stream the Crunchyroll app from my TV. I have the old Chromecast but it doesn’t connect to 5Ghz Wifi while the new one does. I have found the Chromecast is working significantly better with my new Nexus 6P than it was with my Galaxy S3.
I’ll probably also ask for gift cards to Hulu for the new ad-free option or Crunchyroll Premium.
My PS3 is slowly dying with a corrupted hard drive, so it might be time to replace it with a Blu Ray player.
I might upgrade my computer to a larger SSD and I’m really tempted by the Intel 750, though it’s a lot less storage per $ than the Samsung 850 Pro.
I’m looking towards the drive to family on Thanksgiving so my wife and I can continue on the book What if? by Randall Munroe, so Thing Explainer might be a good addition to my list as well.
My Netgear ReadyNAS just informed me that it will no longer offer firmware updates. I have worked enviously with client’s Synology NAS units before and wished my NAS could do as much. It’s a little on the pricey end for something that is still working though.
Anything else you would recommend?