Stumped on what to get the tech lover in your life? Relax! I’ve picked some of my favorite tech gadgets and electronics this season. Some may surprise you!
Technology is almost impossible to keep up with. Just when you think you have the latest smartphone or sleekest pair of wireless earbuds, something new comes out and suddenly you feel obsolete. Personally, I actually don’t try to keep up but that doesn’t mean some of the folks on your gift list don’t want that latest gadget or smart everything.
As the world continues to change and we continue to adjust, so do the gifts that people want and need. Some experts now even recommend picking out tech gifts strictly for people who now work from home – they have different needs and, quite possibly, may not be fully equipped.
BEST PICK OVERALL: Lexcon Wireless Charger & Phone Sanitizer
BEST VIRTUAL REALITY: Meta Quest 2 VR Headset
BEST TECH GIFT SUBSCRIPTION: The Breo Box
BEST FOR KIDS: Lovebox Spinning Messenger Box
BEST FOR PETS: Furbo Dog Cam & Treat Tosser
BEST FOR DRONE FANS: DJU Mini 2 Drone
BEST FOR POT ENTHUSISTS: LEVO Herbal Infuser Machine
And even if those on your list may not work from home, your list is usually pretty extensive. It can include your parents, your boss, your bff – you name it. So, I’ll walk you through my list of what I truly think is the best-of-the-best, the coolest, and some of the most affordable all at the same time that really work perfectly whether you’re shopping for her, finding something off the beaten path for him, your tech-savvy kids, hard-to-please teens, or are just looking for a cool toy to tinker around with.
HOW WE CHOSE THE TOP GADGETS
Full disclosure, some of my picks for a few of the below electronics and gadgets are things I personally own, love, and use. But, since I’m not tech expert I also cross referenced a few different data points and overall “buzz” online this month. Here’s the breakdown:
In a sea of some of the coolest tech products I’ve seen in a while, I’ve researched, tested, and curated a little something for everyone on your gifting list this year. For the music lover to the smart home fanatic to the fitness guru and avid TV watcher and everything in between. I got your back! Oh, and if you’re looking specifically for tech gift ideas for your kids, check that out here!
EDITOR’S TOP PICK
1. The Breo Box Tech Gift Box
Finally out of all the zillions of subscription boxes out there there’s finally a really amazing tech one that features some of the coolest gadgets, electronics, and gear. Your giftee will received around $300 worth of gadgets and you’ll only pay a fraction of the price. You can choose a season delivery option or go with just a one-time or once per year option. They even have a section where you can purchase specific products that have been included in the past that are some of the most popular.
Savings + Deals: You can get an extra $15 off when you sign up for Breo’s emails. Just enter in your email address on their site and they’ll inbox you $15 off your next order.
FOR THE VR CREW
2. The Meta Quest 2 VR Headset
We all want to escape our actual reality and head out into the virtual reality world, even if it’s just for a bit. The Meta Quest 2 comes with everything you need to enter into the VR-scape with the headset and controllers. There are even more than 250 titles (and counting) to choose from in the VR world of fitness, gaming, social, entertainment, and more. Overall it’s pretty lightweight, making it easy for you (or your kids) to take with you just about wherever you go.
Helpful Review: “It’s so immersive. I was in outer space and I was able to push planets around; I was in a black hole for a moment. It was incredible. In another game I was in a real story about a man who has schizophrenia and in another, a fitness game, takes you all over the world while you workout. I’ve also watched short vr videos in the library where I was auditioning to join Lego Batman lol and in another video I was on a roller coaster. Overall, I am very impressed with the Meta Quest and have absolutely no regrets with the purchase.” – Michael
FOR THE GERMAPHOBES
3. The Lexon Wireless Phone Charger & Sanitizer
When you need to charge up your phone you might as well do it wirelessly (thanks QI) and you might as well sanitize it at the same time. With the Lexon Oblio, you can wirelessly charge your smartphone in something that looks almost like a chic vase and thanks to it’s UV-C lighting it’ll “sanitize” your phone by getting rid of all those gross germs that are basically all over it. Choose from black, white, or soft silver.
Helpful Review: “This is a great option for wireless cell phone charging and it sanitizes as well. The only downfall for me is that my phone will not fit with my cover on. That is a drawback for me because I have a difficult case to remove. I also have a large cell so make sure the measurements match your cell. Otherwise, it does a great job charging and assuming it sanitizes as advertised.” – Teena Noel
FOR THE WEED LOVERS
4. The New LEVO C Infuser Machine
We’ve covered herbal infuser machines in detail around here for the past couple of years and time and time again, LEVO comes out on top. One of their latest versions allows you to infuser butter, oil – you name it – with your favorite herbs, including “that herb” too. Make yourself some pot-brownies, cookies, cakes, gummies, and so much more. The biggest win for this version is that it’s finally dishwasher safe.
Helpful Review: “We used to use the Magic Butter to make about 20 small jars of CBD butter a week to sell at our local food club. The process would take all day and was super messy! We heard of the LEVO C and thought we would give it a try because of how easy and clean it looks. Well we have been playing with it for about a week now and I’ll say it has been very successful. It doesn’t take nearly as long and it doesn’t stink up the house. Plus it’s fun to watch!” – Jodi Trog
Savings + Deals: Shopping direct at LEVO will most likely help you to save the most. They offer a $10 coupon when you sign up with your email address or text. You can get free shipping with minimum order purchase and even up to an extra $50 off when you choose a “bundle and save” option.
FOR THE DRONE FAN
5. The DJI Mini 2 Drone
Sure it’s on the pricey side, but if you’re looking for one of the best selling drone brands for everyday use, you can’t go wrong with this Mini 2 drone from the folks at DJI. It weighs less than an average apple (can you imagine?), it can resist level 5 winds, has a battery life of 31 minutes, and can record pro-level pictures and video. While this certainly isn’t a “kids” drone, with a little supervision your older kids can definitely give this a fly!
Helpful Review: “I took it high, I took it low. I moved it right, and left, and its response time was instant. I figured out how to record. I used the “return to home” feature and watched it gently land itself. It was a kind of breezy yesterday, but this is rock solid and the videos didn’t show a single wiggle. I took it up again today and it was even better than yesterday. This is small. But huge on features. And it’s very well made. It feels nice, substantial, well crafted.” – Patrick Young
FOR THE HOME PROJECT DOER
6. The Digital Electronic Tape Measure
I’m not great with measurements and, well, overall math so this electronic tape measure is pretty fool proof and even I can’t mess up my measurements. It measure up to 16 feet and will even record all your measurements for you. Toss your pencil and paper right out the window!
Helpful Review: “My favorite feature is being able to switch how it reads from the front of the tape to the back of the tape so I can place it inside of a drawer box opening and measure from inside to side. No more bending my tape into a corner and hoping I’m close.” – Roy Cox
FOR THE FORGETFUL
7. The Apple AirTag
Apple’s Airtag is a small, circular device that can be attached to keychains, backpacks, or other belongings. Once connected to an iOS device, Airtag can help track the location of the user’s belongings. The device uses Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to communicate with nearby Apple devices, and can also be used in conjunction with the “Find My” app to help locate missing items.
Airtag has a built-in battery which lasts for approximately one year, and is easily replaceable. The device is also water-resistant and includes a built-in speaker so that it can emit a sound when triggered by the “Find My” app. Overall, Airtag is a well-designed and user-friendly product that provides a valuable service for those who are often misplacing their belongings.
Helpful Review: “Just to show you how good the AirTags work, I attended a Super Bowl party and left my Backpack (with AirTag attached) at home. I had my wallet with me and my house keys in the car. The ‘Find My’ app was able to accurately pinpoint the location of my Wallet, (with me) my keys (in car, on road close to the Super Bowl host’s house) and my backpack, 44 miles away. The location of the backpack had been picked up by another iPhone that was close by the backpack.” – ILuvGr8Deals
FOR THE DOG LOVER
8. The Furbo Dog Cam & Treat Tosser
You and your pup are going to love this gadget! It’s the 2-way audio pet cam for your dog and, even better, it will even toss treats his way based on your command, programming, and settings. Furbo has even added in a “bark alert” that will message your phone when you pup starts barking so you can check in on him, talk to him via the audio option, and even give him a treat no matter where you are at the time.
Helpful Review: “Pro – Being able to rain down treats after we leave the house, helps our dog associate us leaving her with good things. We Like being able to visually check-in on our pup, too. Con – Occasionally, the machine fails to dispense a treat. In fact, it happens about 2 out of 10 times. I don’t know if that’s a result of the machine not loading a treat or, if the treats themselves are the issue.” – Patti’s Girl
FOR APPLE OBSESSOR
9. The MacBook Air M2
It’s the ’22 version from Apple and now even comes in a sleek “midnight” color. Don’t worry, it’s still light-weight, has a fingerprint option so you can login and buy all your apps, etc with the touch of your finger (literally) and thanks to the M2 chip it’s pretty dang fast. If you have last year’s model you may not notice a huge change in the speed and functions, but if you’re upgrading from an older model you’ll be pleasantly surprised. This is actually the one I’m typing on right now and I love it!
Helpful Review: “Take everything from the M1 MacBook Air, make it lighter, slimmer, with a better camera, more screen real estate along with a MagSafe charger & incredibly faster M2 chip, all in a less volume package than it’s predecessor. That’s the ’22 M2 MacBook Air.” – Zuhair A.
FOR THE RETRO GAMER
10. The SEGA Genesis Mini 2
Bring back the nostalgia with the latest mini SEGA Genesis plug-and-play. It’s packed with 50 popular games from yesteryear and even one game that was actually never fully released before! The console comes with 1 wired controller that’s been redesigned for easier game playing. Get ready to relive your Sonic youth!
FOR THE GERMAPHOBE
11. The PhoneSoap Smartphone Sanitizer
Something we personally own and use daily. For real, everyone (and we mean everyone) needs this in their lives. This was the most popular Christmas gift last year and it’s still going strong this year too! It’s the official smartphone sanitizer that gets rid of over 99% of all bacteria using a safe UV light. Did you know your phone is 18x dirtier than a toilet? A toilet! It’ll clean just about any size phone and you can even clean other things like your keys, credit cards, and more.
Helpful Review: “There have been numerous studies on the effectiveness of this type of sanitizing for people who worry or have trouble grasping the topic of UV light sanitizing. And those tests have also been tested on the PhoneSoap products. I think this is a product everyone should have! But remember to keep your devices clean of dirt and debris, as this only kills the bacteria and germs on your phone’s surface.” – Ryan
Savings + Deals: If you shop direct at PhoneSoap they actually do have some coupons to use, like getting an extra 20% off for signing up for their emails and free shipping with minimum purchase. If you go with Amazon and have Prime you can get free 2-day shipping.
FOR THE HEALTH CONSCIOUS
12. The Inside Tracker “Your Real Age Guide”
This is where science and tech come together to blow our minds and help our bodies. By analyzing your blood, your DNA, your lifestyle and nutrition habits, Inner Age will be able to tell you what your “real” age actually is and then help you out by telling you how to live, look, age, and perform better – overall. Everything is customized directly based on you.
FOR THE STAR WARS FAN
13. The Star Wars C3PO Talking Clapper
We’re big fans of anything retro that comes back and if you loved The Clapper you’re going to love the Star Wars C3PO version. Clap and he’ll turn your light (or TV, etc) on. Clap again and he’ll turn it back off. Clap on, clap off. The Clapper. You know the song.
Helpful Review: “Bought the C-3PO Star Wars Clapper for my 8 year old grandson as a last minute addition to his Christmas gifts. It was a hit! Of course, he loved “clapping” C-3PO on and also “clapping” him off. C-3PO’s voice is perfect. He has ended up in the living room of my grandson’s home (instead of his bedroom) so everyone can “Clap On” and “Clap Off.” – Pam Harris
FOR THE ‘ALWAYS ON LOW’
14. The Wireless Charging Station
Wireless charging is all the rage these days, and the Belkin Wireless Charging Station is one of the best options on the market. This sleek and stylish charger can charge two devices at once, and it even comes with a built-in Apple Watch charger.
One of the things I love about it is that it’s incredibly easy to use. Just place your compatible device on the charging pad and it will start charging automatically. The charger also has a handy LED light that lets you know when your device is fully charged.
Helpful Review: “I’ve been using this for a couple of months now. I was initially hesitant to buy based on reviewer feedback of chirping noises. But so far so good. It’s orderly, convenient, looks really nice on the nightstand and charges my iPhone 11 and Apple Watch 6 great. I only had one problem the second week where the iwatch charger on the station stopped working. I unplugged the station from the power supply for a good 5 minutes for hard reboot, plugged it back in and everything was working again. No issues since then.” – K (on Amazon)
FOR THE MODERN HOME DECOR(ER)
15. The Smart Art Frame (Digital Canvas)
Personally, I’m pretty obsessed with my Samsung Frame TV, but if you want to just hang some framed digital art around your home without the TV feature, check out the Meural Canvas II. It’s the smart art frame with a 21.5-inch HD digital canvas that’s connected to your WiFi and will beautifully display the art or photography of your choice in pretty life-like detail. You can change up your art as much as you’d like! In fact, right now they have more than 30,000 different images to choose from. You can even choose the style frame you want – from classic black or sleek white to dark or light wood and everything in between.
Helpful Review: “Settings up was easy but must be done through the Meural app. Meural has gesture controls which allows you to wave your hand to switch images and details. You can also use the app to cycle the images you have loaded. You can add images to the cloud or use SD card and makes most images look great. One annoyance is if you installed Meural in portrait and the image is landscape then it will not load and their isn’t a way to adjust or center the image if it is offset a bit.” – G. E.
FOR THE SLEEK & STYLISH
16. The Rustic Leather Laptop Sleeve
Dress up your laptop in some amazing rustic leather that’s pretty much better than anything we own. Choose from rustic brown or classic black and a variety of laptop sizes.
Savings + Deals: While Nomad Goods doesn’t usually have a ton of promo codes, if you sign up for emails you’ll get 15% off and if you spend at least $100 you’ll get $20 in Nomad cash to spend on a future order.
FOR LONG DISTANCE FRIEND
17. The Lovebox Spinning Heart Messenger Box
Now this is the coolest thing ever and a top-pick for your parents this year. Whenever you use the app to send them a message the heart on the box will spin (alerting them that there’s a new message) and all they have to do is open the box to see the message you’ve just sent them! It’s the perfect way to let them know you’ve been thinking of them.
Savings + Deals: When going with Uncommon Goods, if you sign up for their newsletter you can get an extra $5 off. If you go direct with LoveBox, you can get 10% off with email signup.
FOR THE BOOZER
18. The Bartesian At-Home Cocktail Maker
Get ready to start mixing cocktails like a true pro at your next party or just when you get home from work (or once it officially hits “noon” during the week). Think if the Bartesian like a Keurig, but for adults who want bar-worthy drinks made for them from their own personal bartending machine. Add the liquor of choice, toss in the “drink mix” pod, press start and get the perfect mixed drink each and every time. You can make margaritas, daiquiris, old-fashioned, gin martinis and so many more.
Helpful Review: “For me it means no more stocking mix bottles, or pre-making mixes, no time-consuming making drinks and best of all NO MESS! And I no longer throw away a bunch of expired mixers. These expire too. You can refrigerate to double their life. But it’s all more manageable. Does it makes sense for you financially? You need to figure that out. But it’s like having a bartender at home.” – XA Einstein
FOR THE LIGHTING EXPERT
19. The Smart Ambient Lighting Kit
It’s the perfect way to add a little movie-theater quality ambient lighting to your own home, especially you home entertainment center. The ambient light bar can actually be controlled by your voice, you can choose over 16 million different color combos, and can really make movie night, game play battle, or just regular TV watching so much cooler!
Helpful Review: “The lights come with a versatile and easy to use mounting system supported by 3M tape and allen key adjustment for the bases, you can arrange them in a variety of ways. The lights can be controlled via the Philips HUE app, and require a bridge to connect via ethernet to your internet router, the source of the app and the bridge connection must be on the same network in order for it to work. Other LED smart systems do not use wifi. Philips HUE offers a lot of connections up to like 72 lights per bridge.” – Mustafa Jafar
FOR THE HOME CHEF
20. The Revolution Smart Toaster
The Revolution Smart Toaster is the latest invention from the minds at Revolution Labs. It’s a toaster that connects to your smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth, and allows you to control it from there. So what does that mean for us? Well, it means you can now make toast without even getting up from your bed!
The toaster comes with a free app that you can download from either the App Store or Google Play. Once you have the app, simply pair it with your toaster and you’re good to go. Now, instead of fumbling around with buttons and knobs, you can just use your smartphone or tablet to control the toasting process. It’s like the Jetson’s come to life!
Savings + Deals: Get 10% off with email signup at Urban Outfitters. If you go direct with Rev Cook you can get an extra 10% off with newsletter sign up and up to an extra $100 off the original price.
FOR THE MUSIC LOVER
21. The Apple AirPods Pro
Are you looking for a new pair of headphones? If so, you may be wondering if the Apple AirPods Pro are worth the investment. Here’s what you need to know about these popular headphones.
They feature active noise cancellation, which helps to reduce background noise and make it easier to focus on your music. The headphones also have a transparency mode, which allows you to hear your surroundings while still listening to your music.
The AirPods Pro are sweat and water resistant, making them ideal for use during workouts or when you’re out in the rain. They feature an adjustable ear tip that helps you get a comfortable, secure fit. The headphones come with a charging case that offers up to 24 hours of battery life. They offer great sound quality, active noise cancellation, and a comfortable, secure fit.
Helpful Review: “Clearly meant to work within the Apple ecosystem, it really does seamlessly hand off between your iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch (don’t have a Mac so can’t vouch for there), these buds do an excellent job of delivering excellent sound, decent noise cancellation, and a transparency mode that goes a little unappreciated.” – Henry E
FOR THE WEIGHT-WATCHERS
22. The Renpho Smart Scale & Body Fat Measurer
It’s the smart scale that actually works (I own this one) and is so highly reviewed on Amazon – at last look there have been more than 250,000 reviews! You can hook it up to your phone by downloading the app and it’ll track your weight, body fat percentages, BMI and more. Set goals and watch how your app tracks your progress every time you step on this best selling smart scale!
Helpful Review: “I have been a fitness professional for over 15 years…the app is great but I was able to link it to the Fitbit mobile app and even get it to automatically put my clients daily weigh ins within my coaching app. I won’t make claims about body composition accuracy but frankly all forms of BF testing fall short of 100% perfect measurements.” – CJ Woodruff
FOR WFH CREW
23. The Flexible Gooseneck Phone Holder
Perfect if you’re on endless Facetime or Zoom calls, you don’t have to hold your phone anymore. It can clip to your desk, chair, bed, nightstand – you name it – so you can talk and/or video totally hands-free. It’s like having an extra arm!
Helpful Review: “Often before I go to sleep I like to throw on a movie or YouTube video on my phone. This is great so I don’t have to awkwardly grip my phone or prop it up on a pillow/blanket. Incredibly sturdy and high quality.” – James Wysoki
FOR THE WATER DRINKERS
24. The HidrateSpark Smart Water Bottle
Best For the Thirsty AF
Almost 80% of Americans don’t drink enough water a day (guilty as charged) and the trend this year is motivational water bottles. Yes, really.
Are you tired of lugging around a water bottle that feels like it weighs a ton? Then you need the HidrateSpark Smart Water Bottle. This bottle is not only super light, but it also tracks how much water you’re drinking and syncs with your fitness tracker.
The bottle is made from BPA-free plastic and holds 20 ounces of water. The best part is that it tracks how much water you’re drinking and syncs with your fitness tracker. The app will send you reminders to drink water throughout the day, and you can even set goals.
Savings + Deals: When you go direct with Hidrate, they actually have a pretty decent offer where you can get an extra 10% off with you sign up with your email address.
FOR THE TRUE TECH GEEK
25. The Wi-Fi Vintage Tee
Simply stated and vintage-inspired, this trendy WI-FI t-shirt is perfect for all the tech geeks in your life this season. Choose from a bunch of different color options, too, for men, women, and the kiddos.
FOR THE CLEAN WATER OBSESSED
26. The Larq Self-Cleaning Water Filter Pitcher
If you’re familiar with Larq’s self-cleaning water bottle, this is basically the same thing but in water pitcher form. This one even comes with a free advanced filter and overall it makes your pitcher self-cleaning and worry-free along with having a smart filter life tracking so that you don’t have to try and remember when you should switch out the filter. You’re going to get safer and much better tasting water whether you want to just pour yourself a glass or use it for better tasting coffee, tea, lemonade, you name it!
FUNCTIONAL SMART DECOR
27. The Nanoleaf Smart Modular Lighting Set
One of the coolest lighting sets of the year, these hexagon shaped smart LED lights can easily be put up anywhere on your walls with the adhesive that comes with it, in any pattern you’d like, and you can control them with the app and your smart phone. Our favorite part? You can change the hue and/or colors any time you’d like.
Helpful Review: “Both of our teeny boppers love these!! when we moved they lost their LED strip lights that they loved. Nanoleaf is more expensive, but does ALOT more than strip lights. These are adaptable to touch and sound!!” – Mrs. P
FOR FASTER WIFI SPEED
28. The Eero Mesh Complete WiFi System
Tired of super slow and spotty WiFi? Same! We’re pretty obsessed with this mesh WiFi set because it really speeds things up, especially when you have kids learning from home and adults working from home. This 3-pack covers up to 5,000 sq feet and can actually be set up in 10 minutes or less. Total game changer.
Helpful Review: “The most impressive part about this setup was when I switched to Eero, I used the same WiFi name and password from my previous mesh WiFi. I didn’t have to update any of my existing devices (kid’s cell phones, computers, Smart TV’s, etc) – they just assumed the new WiFi! When I’ve had to do a complete restore with my previous mesh router, I always used the same name and password for the WiFi, but had to go to every device and re-enter the WiFi settings in order for them to connect.” – Ms. Garvin
THE PHONE OF THE YEAR
29. The Apple iPhone 13 (New Model)
We’re totally guilty of always wanting the latest iPhone that comes out. We won’t wait in line, but we’re almost always the first to snag one. The “13” has a 3rd cam lens for ultimate photos and videos, an A15 bionic chip that makes it super fast, and battery life that’s currently better than any other iPhone in the past.
Savings + Deals: If you go with Verizon you can get up to $500 off when you bring in your older phone. It’s definitely worth checking out.
FOR THE TRASH MONSTERS
30. The SimpleHuman Smart Sensor Trashcan
Time to toss out your old kitchen trashcan and upgrade to this one that has a smart sensor on it so it can open and close without you having to touch a thing! This one comes in handy when your hands are messy and gross (especially after handling raw meat, eggs, etc). Simply motion your hand over the top and it’ll open and close on its own. Genius!
If you’re looking for a trash can that’s both stylish and functional, you’ll want to check out the SimpleHuman Smart Sensor Trashcan. This can features a sleek design that will look great in any home, and it’s equipped with smart sensors that make it easy to open and close. Plus, the lid is designed to seal tightly, so you won’t have to worry about odors or leaks.
Helpful Review: “I love that I don’t have to put my foot on a lever. I can always swing my hand over or close and it will open with ease. You can store one case of garbage bags in for easy switching out. It stays clean, I have not had to clean it yet. Yes, it could be cheaper, but worth the cost.” – TME
FOR THE COMPOSTERS
31. The Lomi Pela Countertop Composter
Speaking of trash, if you have a major trash problem on your hands and want to try your hand at composting, this is the countertop composter that has gained major buzz online and has been selling out all over the place. All you have to do it toss in your food scraps, coffee grounds, etc and simply press the button and your Lomi will start composting to breakdown all your waste. Depending on which option you pressed, you can use that dirt that it makes for your indoor plants, your outdoor garden, or simply toss it in your outdoor compost bucket. It’s easy and kind of fun!