Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Edition

It’s that time of the year again and we are all checking our lists and checking them twice…to make sure we didn’t forget to purchase any last minute items for our loved ones who may have been naughty or nice (but either way, we still have to buy them something, right?)

Well if you’ve hit mid-December and still have a few people to check off this year and you’re stumped trying to figure out what Santa should bring, here are a few ideas for any tech-lover from ages five to 95.

For the music lovers

This year, just about Bluetooth-enabled will be a hit. With the adoption of smartphones hitting an all-time high, most of us are completely attached to these gadgets and products that help us get the most out of them seem ingenious.

The Ultimate Ears (UE) UE Boom portable speakers are probably the best Bluetooth product boom Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Editionspeakers on the market. Although rivals Bose and Beats have Bluetooth speakers that are better known, the UE brand offers more capabilities and a better sound. The UE Bluetooth speakers take moments to set up and through the app, you can hook up more than one speaker and create a stereo sound (something the other speakers don’t offer). Oh and did we mention that the speaker is waterproof? Think outdoor parties and being able to leave your smartphone indoors so it doesn’t get damaged. The UE Boom retails at $ 199 and comes in a variety of colors and even offers some with designs.

For teenagers or someone looking for a more visual appeal (and a product around the same price point), the JBL Pulse Bluetooth speaker absolutely has that visual side. With LED lights that move to the music, this pill-shaped device makes more than just music – it makes a statement.

For the one who hates wires

For years, products have tried to remove the BlueBuds X Storm White Packaging 300x300 Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Editionwires connecting our ears to our music players, but without much success and with compromising quality. However, this year, a few wireless headphone companies have come through in a big way and one of the best is Jaybird with the Bluebuds X. These beautifully designed wireless earbuds alleviate the confusion as to where you store your super gigantic Phablet-like iPhone 6 Plus while trying to take a stroll on the treadmill – you can store anywhere within the detectable distance and still hear great sound.

These headphones are great for anyone who enjoys working out or an on-the-go lifestyle and doesn’t want wires getting in the way. Although the $ 170 price tag is a little higher than its competitors, the quality and fit of these earbuds also seem to surpass competitors, so they could be worth the investment.

For the phone dead felon

Hate hearing the excuse, “my phone was dead?” In a world full of not having a charger or not being 1350x1240 wysiwyg helium ip5s Front Back 3QTR3 100713 300x275 Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Editionable to find an outlet, but living and dying by our phones, a better way to charge our lifelines is a must.

There are plenty of phone charging cases, but one of the best is the Mophie. The Mophie is a battery pack on steroids and versions of the product can bring your phone from dead to 100 percent in minutes (and some even offer additional storage). The case has versions for all types of devices and all it takes is a quick flip of the switch to bring power back to your life. The products hover around the 80-dollar mark.

For the organized (or wannabe organized) colleague or friend

Know someone who despises clutter and would love to get their paperwork more organized? Thanks to our digital lives and the ability to transmit data paperlessly, now is as good of a time as any to convert paper files into digital ones and consider decluttering all aspects of lives.

A great product to make this happen is receipts 610px receipt 300x235 Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide EditionNeatReceipts, which is a portable scanner and smart organization system. All you have to do is scan the documents using the device and then the digital images are stored within the software where they become filed and searchable. Another awesome option about this product is that it does come with an app and you can use the app to scan images and the data will still be parsed accordingly. The NeatReceipts retails at about $ 180.

For the kids

And of course, we cannot forget the kids when we talk holiday gifts and technology. Of course there are plenty of mobile devices and tablets that are lots of fun, but let’s bring it back to good old toys – that are now synced with tech.

Check out Zoomer Dino. Zoomer is a robotic dinosaur that operates by detecting hand dino deco1 300x210 Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Editiongestures, or by remote control. Charged using a USB port, Zoomer uses its head sensors to detect movement and will respond accordingly based on some pre-programmed commands. However, Zoomer is a dinosaur so he can be somewhat unpredictable and get angry and go a bit crazy by spinning around and turning his eyes red. Overall, Zoomer is a pretty good time and he retails for about $ 80-100.

For kids who want a furry friend and parents who don’t want to have to take care of one, The FurReal Friends Get Up and GoGo My Walkin’ Pup Pet is a lifelike dog that barks, wags its tail, char page gogo 298x300 Tech Toys: The Holiday Gift Guide Editionand walks – but does none of the “un-fun” stuff and can easily be turned off. Furreal friends respond to voice prompts and interact with each other and the compatible app when downloaded and activated. FurReal pets can be found around the $ 50 price point.

There are plenty of other amazing tech toys out this season, so use these as suggestions and shop around to find some deals. After all, Santa may still come down the chimney, but he’d probably much rather be delivering presents while riding one of these.

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Innovation » Jen Cohen Crompton