On your marks, get set, go! The 2015 holiday shopping season is upon us, and most Americans will be parting with some cash in an effort to please and surprise the loved ones on their lists. If you are shopping for technologists, the options are almost limitless, thanks to all the gadgets and gizmos on the market.
Electronics will make up 60% of all holiday shopping this season, according to Adobe Digital Index. And because technology has become a common gift for virtually anyone, you'll have to think harder to find a gift that's truly worth giving. Really, an iWatch or the $49 Amazon Fire -- while sure to be popular gifts for the masses -- show no creativity on your part.
So get thinking, and get shopping. You don't even need to leave your sofa to get the best prices. Although retail experts often advocate waiting until the last minute to score the best deal on your purchases, that may be changing as customer habits evolve. In fact, Adobe predicts that online prices should hit rock bottom on Thanksgiving Day, rewarding shoppers with an average discount of 27%.
Even those of us who shop on Thanksgiving Day may be starting late in the game. The National Retail Federation reported that 60% of Americans began checking items off their lists in mid-November. In addition, it expects 135.8 million consumers to shop on Thanksgiving weekend, with another 50 million joining in the fun on Cyber Monday.
So warm up your laptop and settle in with a piece of pumpkin pie for some serious tech-centric shopping. On the following pages you're sure to find the perfect gift for the special geeks in your life.
Dressed for success
The techie uniform is a T-shirt and jeans, and any self-respecting nerd has a collection of tees sporting hip software company logos, video game characters, and/or arcane mathematical expressions. If your loved one works with networking hardware or protocols, they'll appreciate INE Apparel's line of tops targeted at networking professionals.
INE Apparel T-shirt $25; hoodie $35
Give the Force
Tis the season -- the new Star Wars release season, that is -- and what Jedi knight in training wouldn't love their very own lightsaber? Ultrasabers offers "the galaxy's finest selection of custom lightsabers" built to your specifications from T6 aircraft aluminum. Customers select the blade and hilt style, along with options for different colored light and sound. A fully custom sword is shipped out in 1 to 5 days, says the company, and is "battle ready" to withstand a skirmish with even the Dark Lord himself.
Ultrasaber $214 - $464 for model shown, depending on options
Watt could be more fun?
Every kid wanted a go-kart growing up, but what puts this model on the nerdy crowd's radar is its use of solar power to put the "go" in "kart." The MotoTec Solar Electric Go-Kart boasts a 4-watt, monocrystalline silicon solar panel on the rear wing that continuously recharges the vehicle while in use. It can reach speeds of 15 mph, includes disc brakes, and comes standard with 9-inch pneumatic tires to handle a variety of terrain.
Toys R Us $499
Move over, super glue
Plastics are no longer the future; in today's world it's impossible to avoid them. And while plastic may be some amazing and versatile stuff, when it breaks you might as well throw it away. Unless, that is, you are the proud owner of the Bondic Liquid Plastic Welder. This nifty tool applies liquid plastic to repair almost any type of material, including plastic, metal and wood. An ultraviolet light then hardens the repair in place, creating a strong bond. The Bondic even works under water, according to the manufacturer.
The Grommet $21.95
Build a buddy
What does a techie love more than a toy robot? A toy robot they can build themselves! The EZ-Robot JD Humanoid Robot kit comes with all the pieces (called EZ-Bits) to put together a fully functional sidekick of their very own. The robot's "brain" is a controller that scales for beginner and advanced users via the included EZ-Builder software and apps. The software makes programming the robot easy with a GUI that allows you to quickly add behaviors such as walking, camera tracking, speech recognition, and GPS. You can even turn the robot into a controller for your favorite gaming systems.
Robot Shop $429.99
Its a bee...It's a gnat...It's
Billed as the smallest, most lightweight drone in the world, the Pico Drone from SKEYE can go places no drone has gone before -- most likely without anyone even noticing. Intended for indoor use, the quadcopter design weighs just 0.25 ounces and measures 0.87 inches square by 0.75 inches high. It's tiny enough to take off from the tip of your finger, but has the agility and functionality of larger models. Toss it in the air, and it will find an instant hover position. Then you can lead it through flips, zips, and dives using the 6-axis flight control system.
Dude!!! I Want That $34.99
Add dimension to their life
If your loved one is a fan of the maker movement and into tech (or plastic figurines), we have the perfect gift suggestion. The Da Vinci Jr. 3D Printer from XYZPrint claims to be the lowest-priced 3D printer on the market (retailing for $349 in the US) but offers the features and functionality of models that go for several thousands. Requiring no manual calibration, the machine is ready to use right out of the box, and can create designs up to 6 inches square and high. The printer only works with XYZPrint's proprietary filament spools, however, so be sure to buy extras.
The mother of thumb drives
If your sun and stars likes to keep important files in handy reach, check out the Game of Thrones Dragon Egg USB Drive. Holding 16GB worth of storage, this little device makes it simple for your loved one (or yourself) to store, share, and play files in Targaryen style.
Shop HBO $39.99
Embrace the anti-tech
Perhaps a significant other has been indulging a little too much in the wonders of technology and needs a reminder that "unplugging" does not simply mean switching over to WiFi. Find the perfect getaway using Digital Detox Holidays. This website provides an array of resorts for travelers all over the world seeking quiet and serenity. Choose from nature retreats, safaris, beachside bungalows and extreme luxury. But you won't find an Internet connection or cell service.
Digital Detox Holidays Prices vary
- Susan Fogarty
- Connect Directly
Great Gifts For Tech Lovers
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