Best gifts: Top tech gadgets and tools for the remote worker

These are some of our top picks for technology and gifts which can make remote working smooth sailing.
By Charlie Osborne, Contributing Writer
1 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Hover X+

The $89.99 Hover X+ is a practical, portable "lap desk" which, while designed for gamers, can also be a valuable tool for remote workers who do not always use a home office.

Created for 11-, 13-, 15-, and 17-inch laptops and suitable for most smartphones and tablets, the lapdesk can be used to create a mobile workspace no matter where you are.

See it now: iSkelter

2 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Geyes folding keyboard

When you're on the move as a remote worker, sometimes you may need to work on public transport or in other places where there doesn't happen to be a desk setup handy. In these cases, a product such as the $19.99 Geyes folding keyboard, a Bluetooth-enabled, portable accessory that can connect to iOS/Mac OS, Android, and Windows devices, among others, could come in handy.

See it now: Amazon

3 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Earin M-2

The £219 ($285) Earin M-2 wireless headphones, a potential replacement to Apple's earbuds, use NXP technologies to stay linked to your mobile device without breaks in connectivity. The noise-canceling devices, which are very small, feature a touch-based interface for controlling your music, phone calls, or summoning Siri, Alexa or Google Assistant.

See it now: Earin

4 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET


Sometimes, the most useful gadgets are also some of the cheapest. If you are looking for a gift for someone constantly on the road, the $9.49 Grippy anti-slip mat is a small -- but valuable -- choice. The mat can be used to stick anything from keys to smartphones on a car's dashboard.

See it now: Iwantoneofthose

5 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Fujitsu ScanSnap iX100 wireless mobile scanner

Remote, freelance, and self-employed workers often may need to print, scan, and sign documents as part of their role or in a bid to secure new contracts. In order to make this requirement less of a hassle, the $189.99 Fujitsu ScanSnap iX100 mobile scanner, which is compatible with both Windows and Mac systems, can be used to wirelessly scan documents in a matter of seconds.

See it now: Amazon

6 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET


The €229 Loupedeck+, the upgraded version of the original Loupedeck, could make a great gift for remote, creative workers.

The console can be used to take over editing duties in Adobe Lightroom, and by way of sliders, toggles, and buttons, which can be set to perform particular actions, the device can speed up workflows.

See it now: Loupedeck

7 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Anker PowerCore 10000

When you work remotely, you may need to swing out of your home office from time to time and travel. In these cases, an $31.99 Anker PowerCore 10000 could be a great accessory to own, considering the power bank is light enough to be thrown into a bag but powerful enough to charge a variety of mobile devices.

See it now: Amazon

8 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

iPad Pro

Apple's $629+ iPad Pro could make a great gift this year for users of the macOS operating system who are looking for a new tablet to synchronize their information and work on the move.

The tablet comes in 10.5-inch or 12.9-inch Retina Display variations, as well as up to 512GB storage, an A10X Fusion chip, 12-megapixel camera, and 4GB RAM.

See it now: Apple

9 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Microsoft Surface Pro

The $799+ Microsoft Surface Pro is another gift for remote workers, which is likely to be received with appreciation. The tablet comes with Windows 10 Pro and sports a 12.3-inch PixelSense Display, up to 1TB storage, up to an Intel i7 processor, and up to 16GB RAM.

Also: Microsoft's refreshed Surface Pro, Laptop and Studio: New specs, pricing, availability

See it now: Microsoft

10 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Google Chromecast

As a remote worker, having multiple screens, monitors, and the ability to throw content up between them can be highly useful while completing projects.

A valuable gift for this purpose is the $35 Google Chromecast, a second-generation device that can be used to stream everything from browser sessions to YouTube videos, movies, or television shows.

See it now: Google

11 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

MOS magnetic cable organizer

The $12.95 MOS magnetic cable organizer is a useful gift or stocking filler for your average home worker. There's nothing more annoying than ending up with a jungle of cables to untangle at the end of the working day, but thanks to this device's magnetic surface, such daily annoyances can be avoided.

See it now: MOS

12 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Bose noise-canceling earbuds

As a long-distance employee or contractor, sometimes you find yourself working in all manner of environments -- complete with their own noise challenges.

Whether on a plane, a train, or in a home office with noisy neighbors, a pair of noise-canceling earbuds can be of real value. The $249 Bose QuietComfort 20, albeit a pricey investment, could make a great gift.

See it now: Amazon

13 of 16 Sarah Tew/CNET

Garmin Vivosmart 3

There are many advantages to remote work, but sometimes, a disadvantage is that there is no such thing as a standard working day. As such, sleep patterns might become erratic, and so a comfortable wearable that monitors sleeping patterns and stress might be worth investing in -- or giving as a gift.

The $74.95 Garmin Vivosmart 3 has a built-in heart rate monitor, all-day stress tracker, and is able to monitor physical activity, calories burned, and more.

Also: CNET: Garmin Vivosmart 3 review

See it now: Amazon

14 of 16 Josh Miller/CNET

Fitbit Versa

It can sometimes be far too tempting to work without stepping a foot outside for long periods of time. As the day goes past, however, a fitness tracker such as the $199.95 Fitbit Versa could make a great gift for a remote worker who sometimes needs reminding they should take a step back and go for a walk on occasion.

The lightweight smartwatch is compatible with both Android and iOS and is able to monitor physical activity and can also be used for smartphone connectivity.

Also: CNET: Fitbit Versa review

See it now: Amazon

15 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Corsair Scimitar Pro programmable mouse

To make workflows more efficient, a simple solution is a programmable mouse, such as the $74.99 Corsair Scimitar Pro. While designed with gaming in mind, there is nothing stopping workers from using the same functionality to increase the speed of daily tasks at the desk in a variety of applications.

See it now: Amazon

16 of 16 Charlie Osborne/ZDNET

Jelly Comb wireless mouse

Another peripheral option is the $9.95 Jelly Comb plug-and-play wireless mouse. The mouse is affordable and slimline, and can be thrown into a bag and fished out for remote work in tandem with many different devices and operating systems.

However, if you will be using this mouse with a USB-C connection, you will need to buy an adapter.

See it now: Amazon

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