Tech Gifts

Holiday Tech Gifts

It’s safe to say the holiday season is here!! In keeping with the spirit of the holidays, it’s only right that the Expert Roundtable Discussion for the month of November focus on “Holiday Tech Gifts”.

Our Panelists:

Dennis Kennedy (DK), Greg Siskind (GS),  Steve Embry (SE) and  Sofia Lingos (SL).

What’s One Tech Gift You’re Hoping To Receive This Holiday Season?

DK: Wait, wait, just one? If you forced me to pick just one, it would be the Bose QuietComfort 35 headphones. Noise cancelling and wireless. It’s shocking how loud it is on planes these days.

GSI’m a triathlete and a fan of sports tech. The new Apple Watch is waterproof and has apps for swimmers, something that would definitely be of use to me. Combined with my H-2O headphones attached to my goggles that lets me run my iPod shuffle, I’ll be pretty well equipped.

SE: There’s lots of big ticket items I would like (new MacBook Pro for example) but I don’t have enough rich friends to hope for that. More realistically, a back up hard drive would be nice. I have one but its full!

SL: Dear Santa – I would like an Amazon Echo.  I make pretty good Christmas cookies, leave treats for the reindeer and have a big chimney.  See you soon. Thanks!

What’s One Gift Suggestion You Can Recommend To Someone In Need Of A Gift Idea?

DK: An Amazon Echo – such a versatile and evolving platform. Kevin Kelly’s Cool Tools book is a little older now, but it’s a great gift for your friends who like cool tools. And you can never go wrong with giving more adapters and rechargers.

GS: Unless you know the person well, I’d suggest that when it comes to tech, give a gift card. Presumably, if it’s a gift, it’s going to be used in the home, for recreation or while traveling. And you’ll want to know about the person’s tastes, needs and level of technical skill. If you don’t have a good handle on the answers, I’d let the person choose for themselves.

SE: Gift cards are always nice and will suit if your not sure. If you are buying for a person who travels a lot and want to spend some money, the new bose real quiet earphones are super. They are small but really do the job. I still use an ipod when I am on a plane so for a traveler they are good to since you can have lots to listen to without paying for spotty wifi.

SL: My husband won’t let our daughter get a cat so we got her a Zoomer Kitty robot (this could also be fun in the office, kind of like a therapy dog).  On a more professional note I think Tile is a great tech gift (Thanks Tom Bolt)!

What’s One Of The Worst Tech Gifts In The Past You’ve Bought Or Received?

 DK: The worst was from a law firm who sent me a large, lighted magnifying glass. How old do they think I am? Let’s “see” how many referrals that gift gets them! My friends and family know that I’m very particular about tech and would give me a gift card rather than try to pick something for me.

GS:I had a terrible shopping experience at a particular big box tech store several years ago and have refused to shop there anymore. Periodically, I’ve gotten gift cards from the store and have re-gifted rather than going back.

SE: A cheap selfie stick that didn’t work and broke almost as soon as I opened it. Somebody gave me a google cardboard knock off that never really worked. I am sure there are others that were even more forgettable.

SL: A cheap tablet from GroupOn.  When I tried to return it they sent me a second one that I gifted away (and a full refund).  Obviously I was not the only person with an issue.

What’s Your Favorite Place To Shop For Tech Gifts?

DK: There are places other than Amazon? I’m all in on Amazon Prime, except for the occasional trip to the Apple Store.

GS: Not going far out on a limb, but I like to shop at Amazon. Aside from having a massive selection and competitive prices, the buyer reviews have now become critical to how I shop. I also find a lot of interesting sports tech products at REI stores and on their web site.

SE: I’m an Apple guy so that’s like going to church. Amazon is always reliable especially if you are prime. Best Buy has a decent selection and occasional deals. Those are my top three, both in person and online.

SL: It depends.  I have a slight Amazon Prime addiction so if it’s available there, probably my first choice.  If it is a specific brand I like shopping through the brand’s store.

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