Holiday treats for techies

Christmastime is here, and you just might be in the market to buy something special for a loved one. While some people are easy to shop for, I understand that techies can be a little more difficult. Here’s a list of some of the top tech gift ideas to take a little stress out of your holidays. While some go-to tech gifts include drones, action cameras, phones, smartwatches and smart home devices, there are many tech gifts that are unique, fun and useful.

VR headset

Virtual reality (VR) headsets aren’t brand-new technology, but they certainly aren’t in most households. This head-mounted technology immerses the wearer in a virtual world.

While I have experienced VR headsets in the past and was aware of their capabilities, it wasn’t until recently that I had the opportunity to experience one for purely entertainment purposes. VR headsets have come a long way and offer an experience like no other entertainment console.

Whether you are looking for a business and productivity experience or just a new immersive way of gaming, a VR headset might be the way to go. One VR headset worth checking out is the Meta Quest 2.

Air pump

This one is for weekend warriors or those who like functional tech gadgets. The Airmoto is a hand-sized portable air pump that claims it is capable of 120 pounds per square inch (PSI). That means it can air up footballs, basketballs, bicycle tires, ATV tires and even car tires.

It’s fully charged after 2 hours and will provide about 40 minutes of use. All you need to do is set the desired pressure, connect it and press start. It has a nice digital display and can also be used to check the tire pressure in your vehicle. Did I mention this thing is small? You can easily put it in your pocket, purse or backpack.

Digital gaming table

The Arcade1Up Infinity Game Table is something the entire family can enjoy. I don’t know about you, but my family has a mess of old classic games with the boxes torn and falling apart. This new 32-inch digital gaming table will let you get rid of all those unsightly, oddly stacked board games.

It includes all the classics like Monopoly, Scrabble, Trivial Pursuit, Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, Yahtzee, and many more. It also has puzzles, card games and coloring books all in one device. With more than 40 games, it is sure to keep family game night going for a long time to come. It can be used with or without the included table legs, so it can be used flat on a tabletop or set up coffee-table style.

Portable projector

Have you ever wanted to carry a 100-foot television with you wherever you go? Now you can, and you can carry it with one hand. While there have been miniature projectors in the past, there have been none that I would consider worth having until now.

The newest Anker Nebula Capsule II is a truly portable all-in-one TV/projector. It has built-in smart TV functionality, just like your normal smart TV. It also has a built-in speaker and is capable of HDMI, wireless and Bluetooth connections.

With this projector being slightly larger than a soda can, you can take it almost anywhere. It provides a true 720p HD picture at 200 ANSI lumens, so it provides a crisp image in a low-light environment. Enjoy two and a half hours of TV or gaming before needing to recharge the internal battery. It would make a great addition to backyard bonfires, camping trips or just about anywhere you might want a big screen.

Dash cams

While Europeans have embraced the use of dash cameras in their cars for far longer than Americans, we are catching up. I have noticed an increase in the adoption of dash cameras over the past few years, and I can see why. Not only do they provide instant replay footage in the event of a car accident, but they also detect motion and vibration when your vehicle is parked, automatically triggering the camera to record any activity when you are not around.

Newer dash cameras with GPS functionality can also record location and speed, interface with smartphones to provide alerts, and allow you to share your recordings. While a dash cam can be a great asset for settling insurance claims, it can also complement road trips you take with your family and friends by saving memorable footage of all your adventures.

While there are many dash cam options out there, they are generally easy to install – you just need space on your dashboard or windshield to mount the camera. In a recent article, CNET recommended two dash cams that retail for less than $150: the Garmin Dash Cam Mini 2 and the Nexar Beam.

As with any technology purchase, be sure to do your research first before buying, and only buy from trusted sellers, especially if you’re shopping online.