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The best holiday tech gifts for everyone on your nice list

Looking for the best tech gifts for family and friends this holiday season? We have an easy list to find a special gift for everyone.
Written by Rebecca Isaacs, Staff Writer on

If you're a "shop early" kind of person, you know that now's the time to find the perfect gift for your beloved family member or friend. Tech is only becoming more and more integrated in our lives, and for the tech enthusiast gift recipient, a new gadget can be a great option this holiday season.

Whether you're looking for a gaming laptop, a simple mouse, or a way for your parents to stream their favorite shows, we found the best holiday tech gifts for a variety of people and price points.

Must read:

The best tech gift ideas for the holidays

  • Price: $270
  • Tech specs or features: 10.2-inch touchscreen | 64GB storage | Retina Display | Space Gray

Whether they're looking to stream, read, or just check the news while on the go, the iPad is an excellent tool. The 10.2-inch touchscreen comes with Apple's signature Retina display, and True Tone displays a vibrant picture for watching TV shows during travel or just surfing the internet.

It offers up to ten hours of battery life and works with the Apple Pencil and Smart Keyboard for light work that can be completed when hooked up to these accessories. Plus, it offers Touch ID security for secure authentication.

Read the review: 2021 iPad review

  • Price: $400
  • Tech specs or features: Fitness tracking | 80-hour battery life | Titanium shell

Have a loved one that likes to hit the gym? The Samsung Watch Pro can help get them through the most rugged conditions, whether it's biking, hiking, or another outdoor activity. With a titanium shell, enhanced GPS with Glonass and Galileo positioning, as well as LTE mobile data capabilities, it can be used to track health, fitness, and location with up to 80 hours of battery life.

In his review, ZDNET expert Jason Cipriani deemed it "the best wearable for Android phone users."

Read the review: Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro review

  • Price: $140
  • Tech specs or features: 5.5-hours battery life Adjustable noise canceling | Adjustable fit

The Jabra line has consistently been one of our picks for best earbuds, and the 85t is the best for its noise cancelling capabilities. Plus, it's also waterproof, making it great for those who work up a sweat at the gym and get caught out in the rain. The buds pack up to 5.5 hours of battery life and include a charging case that brings the total listening time up to 25 hours.

They're compatible with both Android and iOS, so no matter what the recipient uses, they can connect them to their respective device. The MyFit feature with the Jabra Sound+ app helps ensure the earbuds are a perfect fit.

Read the review: Jabra Elite 85t wireless earbuds review

  • Price: $160
  • Tech specs or features: Bluetooth and 2.4GHz connectivity | 300-hours battery life | Customizable EQ settings

Gifting for a PC gamer? The HyperX Cloud Alpha wireless gaming headset is the perfect choice for gaming. This headset can handle over 300 hours on a single charge, so worrying about charging will be a thing of the past. It also features spatial audio and customized EQ settings.

ZDNET gaming expert Taylor Clemons considers the headphones a solid contender "for both PC and console gamers looking for clean audio as well as the ability to create custom EQ settings or take advantage of virtual, spatial sound drivers."

Read the review: HyperX Cloud Alpha Wireless Gaming Headphones review

  • Price: $115
  • Tech specs or features: Adjustable warm light 8GB storage | Weeks-long battery life

As a reader who uses this device almost daily, the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite is a must-have of the season, especially for those who read or need an upgrade. With a warm backlight, you can enjoy late-night reading, and the Kindle can hold thousands of books with its 8GB storage.

I travel frequently to visit family and friends, and I love how lightweight it is. Because it's waterproof, I even took it to the beach during vacation and enjoyed glare-free reading on the 6.8-inch screen. You can opt for the ad-free version to avoid ads on the lock screen.

Read the review: Amazon Kindle Paperwhite review

  • Price: $600
  • Tech specs or features: Mini-LED design Google OS home screen | Bright picture

I've personally used this Hisense TV, and I can say that for the price point (just under $1,200), it's a great TV without the high price tag of other top brands. The Mini-LED picture offers spectacular quality picture for a 55-inch screen. Thanks to the Google TV OS, when you're watching TV, the home screen automatically adds the show you're watching. When you boot up, the next episode is only two clicks away.

One of my favorite features about this TV is that when you're not watching it, it reverts to an ambient mode. Enjoy personal images or a collection of Google's ambient images, including art, landscape portraiture, and more.

  • Price: $100
  • Tech specs or features: 18,000 CPU | 74g weight | 2.4GHz and Bluetooth connectivity

The Aerox 5 is a gamer's powerhouse, featuring nine different buttons for speedy in-game responses. Its design is not only lightweight at 74g, but it also features AquaBarrier technology with an IP54 water and dust-resistant rating. The CPI also goes up to 18,000.

Gamers will get up to 180 hours of continuous play and fast charging when the battery runs low, so they can quickly get back to gaming. It also offers a 2.4GHz and Bluetooth 5.0 option, offering multiple connectivity options.

Read the review: SteelSeries Aerox 5 Wireless mouse review

  • Price: $100
  • Tech specs or features: Two size options | Can be controlled without the app | Two-hour safety time limit

Winter mornings can feel even colder when your coffee grows cold, and the Ember Smart Mug seeks to end all lukewarm beverage problems. It can hold 10oz of any beverage of choice, and you can control it from a smart app. For those that need a certain temperature to brew, say, a cup of English Breakfast, it can help maintain that temperature for optimal steeping.

If apps aren't the drinker's preference, the mug can be used without the app. The temperature is set to 135 degrees out of the box, and for safety purposes, it shuts off after two hours. It comes in 10-oz and 14-oz options, and remember to inform the recipient it isn't dishwasher safe.

Our tablets and phones can keep us glued throughout the day -- and if you're looking for a display to bring a sense of calm and "rays" of light throughout your day, the Presence Inspiration Display can help you do just that. This digital inspiration quote board posts only inspirational quotes, not notifications, to help you take a moment to reflect on the good through your day. You can adjust the accompanying app to show you quotes from Oprah, Michelle Obama, and many more.

We recommend adding this to your cart today -- when the batches come in, they sell out very quickly.

  • Price: $45
  • Tech specs or features: Android compatible | Portable | Ergonomic grip

For those that spend hours gaming on their mobile devices, this handy mobile controller from Razer can help boost their A-game in whatever battle, puzzle, or sandbox game that they are using. Perfect for Samsung and Pixel smartphones (you can find the iPhone compatible one here), it brings latency-free gameplay to the table for Cloud and Mobile gaming.

The device was designed with an ergonomic, flexible design for hours of long, comfortable gaming sessions. When not in use, it collapses for easy travel.

  • Price: $70
  • Tech specs or features: Multiple light colors | 11 white noise sounds | Alexa compatible

It may not be a toy, but parents swear by this sleep machine and wake-up light. The smart clock plays 11 soothing white noise machine sounds to help little ones sleep through the night, including rain, ocean, and lullabies. Control the customizable nightlight, time-to-rise light, and more from the smart app.

It works in conjunction with Alexa so you can voice control the device, and it has an audio monitor to keep an eye on the little ones. It also features a dimmable clock that can be turned off completely. And, in the event of a storm, it can operate on up to 8 hours of battery life to keep that much-needed slee[ schedule.

  • Price: $150
  • Tech specs or features: 24,000mAh | 3 different ports | Compatible with iOS 13 series, Android, and more

Travelers and those whose cell phones are constantly at low battery will love this handy gift. The Anker 737 power bank is powerful enough to charge a laptop while in use as well as charge a cell phone and earbuds. A smart digital display will indicate how much power is left and how much time it will take to completely recharge the battery.

It's a little bigger than most power banks, but then again, most power banks can't charge a MacBook Pro 50% in as little as 40 minutes -- and this device can. For that reason alone, this charger makes the list. It also still tucks away into a backpack or purse pocket for easy portability.

The best tech gifts deals during the holidays

Prefer a lower price point on the holiday shopping? Check out the best tech gift deals below.

How did we choose these best tech gift ideas?

We found an array of tech gifts knowing that everyone has different tastes, preferences, and personalities. For each of the products on this list, we took into consideration who might be using them and the purpose for their use. We also took into account the reviews on these products as well as our own personal experiences with them to make sure that what you're getting is truly a high-quality product.

What should I look for in tech gifts?

You'll want to look for a few things, but for starters, you'll want to check to see if the gift you're considering is compatible with the recipient's devices. For example, the Razer mobile handheld on this list will work with Android devices, but not iPhone, and Razer developed a separate model we linked to ensure your recipient will enjoy it.

Also take into consideration your recipients hobbies. While a traveler may enjoy the Kindle or power bank, they may not enjoy the Hatch Restore+ as much, for example.

What makes a good tech gift?

It depends on your recipient. In general, you'll want something that fits into their lifestyle, so if they love a warm cup of coffee, the Ember Smart Mug might be a good fit. If you think it's something that they will get a solid use out of, that's what counts. Because they're usually on the pricier side, you will definitely want to lean into its practicality in the recipient's daily life.

How can I tell a device's compatibility?

Every piece of tech on this list will indicate what it will be compatible with on the packaging, so you will know exactly what to order. It should say something along the lines of, "Bluetooth compatible." One of the most important things to note is that if it's Bluetooth compatible, you want to ensure they have the appropriate device.

For a gift that requires an app or an iPhone connection, you want to make sure that they have an iPhone. The same goes for Android-based devices on this list -- while some are compatible with an iPhone, not all are, and the packaging and product description will tell you.

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