If you purchase an independently reviewed product or service through a link on our website, SPY.com may receive an affiliate commission.
If you thought 2021 was a standout year for the best tech gifts, then 2022 is going to blow you away. We’re still very early in the year, but we’re constantly checking out the latest tech gear and updating our own personal wish lists. Of course, you can always check out SPY’s guide to the coolest tech gadgets of the moment, which keeps on growing and includes many perfect gift ideas. In addition, our team of editors and product reviewers are always testing out new gadgets, and already this year we’ve reviewed new smart lights, security cameras, laptops, tablets and TVs for SPY readers.
So, what are the best tech gifts in 2022? You’re going to find a bunch of innovative products designed to enrich your everyday life. This includes adaptive noise-canceling headphones, affordable smartphones with killer specs, retro everything, smart home do-it-alls, sportier AirPods Pro alternatives and a new Oculus VR headset.
That’s not to say we’re completely overlooking the biggest releases of last year. These are still awesome 2021 tech gadgets that continue to dominate the sales charts and remain atop many people’s wish lists; don’t sell them short of gift-giving options. For this gift guide, we’re talking must-haves for any tech lover, and we’ve included industry staples from the likes of Apple, Microsoft and Nintendo, along with some impressive new inventions from select indie brands.
So whether you’re looking for creative high-tech products to pass on to your loved ones or upgrades to buy for yourself, there are plenty of options to choose from across different categories and price points. So keep reading for our regularly updated list of the best tech gifts of the year (so far). Keep in mind that many of these products are very in-demand, which means they may be out of stock (or nearly so) at times.
Best Tech Stocking Stuffers of 2022: Amazon Fire TV Stick Lite and Stick 4K Max
Amazon’s latest streaming devices make cord-cutting easier and enhance picture quality to achieve the best presentation on your TV. The $29 Fire TV Stick Lite retains all that made the standard version a consumer favorite, including access to over 200,000 movies and TV shows and Alexa support. Meanwhile, the Stick 4K Max ramps up performance by delivering 4K high-def resolution and faster connectivity via Wi-Fi 6 support. You even get dedicated power and volume buttons on the 4K Max remote to control your TV, soundbar or receiver. Be sure to toss one of these in every family member’s Xmas stocking.
Read More: 80+ Best Stocking Stuffers for 2022
Best Tech Gifts of 2022: Apple Watch Series 7
While the cheaper Apple Watch SE is a solid choice for most people on your shopping list, the Apple Watch Series 7 has great features that could make it the better pick for the health-conscious people in your life. In addition, it has a bigger display that supports a QWERTY keyboard, making this the most practical Apple Watch ever created. Always-on Mode increases brightness by 70% to read messages and notifications more clearly in dark settings. You still get constant ECG monitoring, a great tool for people who want to monitor their heart health. The Series 7 can also charge up to 33% faster than its predecessor. Being able to use the watch as a remote for your AirPods 3 is cool as well.
Jabra Elite 3
For $80, the Jabra Elite 3 nails all the essentials and comes with extra features to provide a premium listening experience for a low price. These buds produce dynamic, clear sound with punchy bass that can be customized in the Jabra Sound+ app through several music presets. The HearThrough feature gives you ambient-listening capabilities, so you hear what’s happening around you in the house or out on walks. To get 7 hours on a single charge, along with 28 hours extra from the charging case is very generous. We also love that the buds come with an IP55 rating to sustain sweat, rain, and dust ingress.
Govee Smart Rope Lights
Govee makes an impressive line of smart lights for gamers, and we recently had the chance to test out the brand’s smart rope light. This pulsating string of light bends and twists into all sorts of fun configurations, and it offers a fun twist on your standard LED strip lights. Because these smart lights can be synced with your music or gaming experience, they’re one of the best tech gifts for gamers in 2022, but anyone who wants to create a unique lighting setup will appreciate this fun lighting hack.
Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra
Did you miss the S Pen stylus that ended unceremoniously with the Galaxy Note 20? Well, it’s back and better than ever with the release of the Samsung Galaxy S22 Ultra. So far, it’s the flagship smartphone to beat in 2022 complete with an even better triple camera system, a brighter Super AMOLED display, super-fast 45W wired charging, and yes, the return of the S Pen. The included accessory provides that paper meets pen experience, which isn’t something you’ll find in many smartphones today.
Lume Cube Video Conference Lighting Kit
Shopping for an aspiring social media influencer? An always-online teenager? What about remote work-from-home warriors? For all of the above, the Lume Cube is easily one of the best tech gifts of the year. We love this video conferencing and live-streaming lighting kit, which easily clips onto laptops and other surfaces. It’s easy to use and set up, and it instantly provides warm and professional lighting for all of your video needs. This clip-on light takes up far less space than a ring light but still provides the same benefits.
Logitech MX Anywhere 3 Wireless Mouse
Now that more of us are permanently working from home, there are probably more than a few people you know who could use a good mouse for their computer as they blow through spreadsheets and compile reports. The Logitech MX Anywhere 3 mouse is a great choice that is as comfortable to use as it is easy to stash in a bag giving people flexibility in how they work and where they work.
Sonos Roam Speaker
This year, Sonos released a new wireless Bluetooth speaker called the Roam, and it’s a hit. We have a full review of it up on the site, but long story short — if you’ve got an audio enthusiast on your list, then you should definitely consider it. It’s a portable, durable, waterproof speaker that boasts Bluetooth capability and all-day battery life as well. It’s designed to be drop resistant, IP7 waterproof, has up to 10 hours of playtime on a single charge and it’s got precision-engineered acoustics for a larger-than-life sound packed into a small, portable package.
Not enough to convince you to add this speaker to your shopping list? The new portable Bluetooth speaker also has Trueplay tuning, which adapts the sound output to your surroundings, and it’s got a lightweight ergonomic design that’s easy to handle.
8Bitdo SN30 Pro Retro Gaming Controller
If there’s a Switch gamer in your life who is obsessed with retro games or 2D indie games, the 8BitDo SN30 Pro is a controller that will instantly bring them joy. Unlike most controllers, the D-pad occupies the prime real estate on the left side of the controller, which you want to use for extra precision while playing a “masocore” platformer, such as Celeste. But while this may look like a controller from the mid-90s, nothing is sacrificed here: you still get a pair of clickable analog sticks, motion sensors, rumble feedback and a screenshot button. Plus it can also work with Mac, PC, iOS or Android, so this thing is much more than a one-trick nostalgia trinket.
Google Nest Cam Battery
Google’s Nest Cam Battery is without a doubt one of the most versatile security cameras around. With its rugged construction and magnetic plate connector, it can be used both inside and out. You’ll have fewer false alerts, too, just because machine learning allows it to distinguish what’s on camera — including pets from people! Best of all, unlike other cameras that require subscriptions to save recorded clips to the cloud for remote access, the Google Nest Cam Battery comes with 3-hours of video history out of the box.
Read more: Google Nest Cam Long Term Review
Braun Series 9 Pro 9465cc Electric Shaver
The Braun Series 9 Pro 9465cc isn’t just an elite electric shaver with a fancy aesthetic and price point to match. It’s a statement piece — one that says money is no object for the man that is seriously committed to keeping up well-groomed appearances. Braun equipped this stunner with a new ProLift Trimmer that gently lifts and cuts more hair with every stroke, reducing friction in the process. The charging dock intelligently cleans, dries, lubricates, and charges the device. Then there’s the stunning metal unibody that comes 100% waterproof for dry and wet shaves. Call this the Rolls Royce of electric shavers.
Apple iPad 9 (2021)
Apple released a new generation of iPad tablets in late 2021, and the base model ninth-generation iPad isn’t the most powerful — but it is the most giftable. That’s mostly thanks to a semi-regular price discount available via Walmart, which brings the price on these new tablets down to just $309. With a newly updated A13 Bionic Chip, this 10.2-inch tablet is faster and more powerful than some laptops. At this price, it’s an easy choice for one of the best tech gifts of 2022.
DJI Mini 2
Getting into drones can be a scary thought, but the DJI Mini 2 can ease those worries because not only is it pretty affordable compared to other drones, but it’s also incredibly easy and safe to fly. For anyone just starting out, it’s the perfect starter drone. It’s also one of the lightest, most feature-filled drones you’ll come across. In fact, it’s one of the few that doesn’t need to be registered with the FAA.
JLab Talk Go USB Microphone
The influx of podcasters and YouTubers has boomed since the pandemic started. If you know someone who’s ready to join the movement, spend your money wisely on JLab’s super-affordable USB microphone. This is a great starter mic with a portable, sturdy design and solid sound quality. Simple features like volume controls and a mute button help newbies become better acclimated to the vocal recording process. Best of all, the Talk Go is easy to connect; just plug it into your laptop’s USB port.
For the aspiring influencer or livestreamer on your shopping list (and what teenager isn’t an aspiring livestreamer or influencer), this is one of the best tech gifts you’ll find this year.
Fujifilm Instax Mini 11
Instant cameras are having a moment right now. Instead of having a family photog capture special moments on their iPhone, give these photos a more natural presence by putting the best instant camera in their hands. The Instax Mini 11 is super easy to use, comes with true automatic exposure, and has selfie capability. You can also snag it in multiple fun colors. There are more expensive instant cameras for sale in 2022, but there aren’t any better ones, so trust us when we say this is one of the best tech gifts of 2022, full stop.
Marshall Emberton Portable Bluetooth Speaker
Portable speakers make awesome Christmas gifts, and this is one of our favorite gifts for men this year. If you’re torn over which model to get your guy, consider one that will speak to his old-school sensibilities. The Marshall Emberton is a nostalgically handsome speaker that packs powerful audio into a tiny design inspired by the brand’s old-school amps. We doubt that it’ll inspire him to grab an electric guitar and jam out in the garage with AC/DC blasting in the background. But for the moments where he just wants to relive classic music in the present, the Emberton will oblige by feeding his ears deep bass and crisp vocals.
Amazon Echo Dot with Clock
No list of the best gadgets of 2022 would be complete without the Amazon Echo Dot, which has always made for an extraordinary stocking stuffer on the cheap. The updated smart speaker from Amazon features a built-in LED display to show the time and outdoor temperatures and auto-dims at night. It may not have the Zigbee hub or the audio quality of its larger counterpart, but it’s half the price, can carry out all of the other Alexa functions and has a LED clock that glows through the fabric cover.
TCL 55″ 6-Series 4K UHD Roku TV (R635)
Whether you’re looking for a great deal on a TV that can be the entertainment workhorse of your living room, or you’re just looking for a second TV to have in your bedroom, this 55-inch beauty from TCL is a great choice. It has the company’s best video processor to date, plus it comes with THX Certified Game Mode to lower latency and increase picture quality when gaming. QLED technology and a refresh rate of 120 Hz means you’re getting vibrant, smooth on-screen action. Roku integration grants instant access to a massive selection of apps and services, along with voice navigation. It’s a great gift for anyone who’s just moved into a new apartment, home or wants to expand their viewing potential.
TVs are always a no-brainer when selecting the best tech gifts of the year, and they make a great gift for the entire family. Looking for something a little bigger to put under the Christmas tree this year? Then check out our guides to the best 65-inch TVs, the best 75-inch TVs, and the best $65 inch TV under $500.
Anker Nano Pro Charger
Anker makes some of the best electronic accessories around, and their wall chargers would make a great gift for anyone with a newer smartphone that wants instantaneous charging. The Nano Pro supports full-speed 20W charging for the iPhone 13, getting it to 50% in just 25 minutes. Safety features like ActiveShield️ provide temperature monitoring so that devices don’t overheat. We’re also loving the vibrant colors: Arctic White, Black Ice, Cool Lavender, and Glacier Blue. Lastly, it costs less than $20, making it a super usable, practical, and affordable gift for anyone on your list.
When it comes to noise-cancelling headphones, the Sony WH-1000XM4 are considered by critics and industry experts (including SPY’s product reviewers) to be the absolute best. The WF-1000XM4 is practically the true wireless version of those headphones, offering many of the same features as its over-ear sibling, but in a flashier, more compact package. It comes stocked with high-end sound features, including 360 Reality Audio support for 3D sound, DSEE Extreme to upscale low-fi recordings, and LDAC codec support for hi-res streaming.
Noise cancellation and battery life surpass what the AirPods Pro delivers. Sony also redesigned these buds for a more ergonomic fit. To consider any other premium pair of wireless earbuds over Sony’s would be a crime, so if you’re searching for the best wireless earbuds to gift in 2022, Sony is the clear choice.
Tile Pro (2022 Version)
Bluetooth trackers are as popular as ever, especially after Apple launched the AirTags. However, Tile played trailblazer to the movement first and their lineup of products has been upgraded with a few new perks. The flagship Tile Pro keeps functionality the same and adds cool features like a Lost and Found QR code on the back that holds contact information. Therefore, if someone stumbles upon your wallet or house keys, they can scan the code and reach out. This version also comes with IP67 dust and water resistance.
Google Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro
If someone in your life recently lost or broke their iPhone and doesn’t want to spend a lot of money on a replacement, surprise them with the Google Pixel 6 or Pixel 6 Pro. These flagship models from the Android kingpin have gorgeous OLED touchscreens that project sharp-looking visuals, excellent camera systems with multiple modes for capturing photos and videos, and IP68 dust and water resistance. Spending a little extra on the Pixel 6 Pro gets you a bigger battery, larger screen, and a third camera. Either way, the features and performance these phones offer for the price can’t be emphasized enough.
Anker Nebula Solar Portable Projector
Help your cinephile friends recreate the magic of the movie theater in their home with the Anker Mars II Pro portable projector. This stout little cube can project a 1080p-resolution image at sizes up to 120 inches and is rated for 400 ANSI Lumens of brightness. But the best part is that it has dual 3-watt integrated speakers (that can double as a Bluetooth speaker) and can also connect to services such as Netflix or YouTube without the need of a dongle. While a dark environment will go a long way toward getting the best out of this projector, it still provides plenty of flexibility.
Nintendo Switch OLED
Nintendo’s new and improved Switch console remains one of the hardest-to-find tech gifts of 2022. And with reports of production being slowed down due to chip shortages, it might feel like you have to strike a deal with Satan to score the Nintendo Switch OLED this holiday season. If by chance he gives you the opportunity to buy a Switch, we do recommend choosing the all-new Switch OLED, which comes with a prettier screen, improved speakers, and stronger kickstand. Battery life remains steady at 4.5 to 9 hours, depending on how bright the screen is during play sessions. Just make sure to add a copy of Metroid Dread and Pokémon Brilliant Diamond to the purchase.
Read More: Where To Buy a Nintendo Switch Online
Amazon Kindle Paperwhite (2021 Version)
If you (or a loved one) have somehow made it to 2022 without an e-reader, now is the time to consider purchasing one. They don’t come any better than the new Kindle Paperwhite, which is bright, incredibly easy to use, lasts for weeks on a single charge, and comes waterproof. Read at the beach with the sweltering sun overhead or cozy up with a good book in bed. With the newly improved screen, you can also forget all about that pesky blue light keeping you up.
Google Nest Hub (2nd Gen)
More and more smart displays are integrating built-in cameras for video calls, but some people are still hesitant about the possibility of Big Brother watching. That’s a big reason why some may be hesitant about having one in the bedroom. However, that’s where the Google Nest Hub (2nd Gen) comes to mind because it respects your privacy. Sure, not having a camera might lessen its value over other options, but know that it also functions as an intuitive sleep tracker. Yes, it can track your sleep using Google’s radar-based Soli technology — all without the need of wearing something as you sleep.
Westinghouse Portable Air Purifier
If you’re looking to get something nice for your mom and dad (or perhaps the in-laws?), then try this air purifier by Westinghouse. Aside from looking fantastic (this thing looks like a Bang & Olufsen wireless speaker) just about anywhere in the house, it also has a leather strap built into the design to easily transport anywhere. Its medical-grade technology and three-stage purification system break down all gaseous pollutants (e.g., bacteria, dust, pet dander, viruses) to provide cleaner and healthier air in the home.
Backbone One Gaming Controler
We all have that friend who manages to sneak in a round of Fortnite or Call of Duty, even when they’re away from the house and on the phone. They will love you forever if you give them the Backbone One as a gift, especially knowing they can play next-gen version directly on their smartphone via Xbox Game Pass Ultimate or PlayStation Remote Play. The console-grade controls give them improved precision and allow them to really own the competition. Like the Razer Kishi before it, this unique controller combines the precision of console gaming with the convenience of mobile gaming.
Ryze Tech Tello
Drones are the perfect big boy toy. They let you command the skies without leaving the ground and perform cool tricks like capturing excellent aerial camera footage. Newbies looking to take up the hobby should own the Ryze Tech Tello. We have it as the best overall drone for beginners, offering a suite of features that serve as “building blocks for novice pilots to learn” how to operate it. A few practice sessions should have them capturing steady 720p video when in flight.
Monoprice Mini Delta V2 3D Printer
Whether for personal, professional, or educational use, a 3D printer is an incredible gift for the inventor in the family. The Monoprice Mini Delta V2 is easy to set up and operate, prints faster than most sub-$200 models, and supports several filament types. Its small and compact size means it won’t take up space in your office or garage. Being an open-source-friendly machine lets users employ other 3D printing slicing software packages for creating cool 3D objects.
Read More: Comparing The Top 3D Printers
Victrola Revolution GO Portable Record Player
SPY is a huge fan of Victrola’s latest Bluetooth record player, which sports a clean, contemporary design, custom-tuned speakers, and an Audio Technica cartridge for enhanced audio quality. More importantly, we love the Revolution Go’s versatility. If you want to stream music from your phone to the integrated speakers, you can do that. If you want to play your records through other external Bluetooth speakers, that’s also an option. And if you want to sling it around with you and play vinyl on the go for up to 12 hours, the choice is yours. For friends, siblings or parents who love their old record collection, this affordable record player is the perfect tech gift.
Ring Video Doorbell
If you know someone who has fallen victim to porch pirates, get them a Ring Video Doorbell, which doesn’t require wires, runs off a battery, can be controlled by Alexa and can store weeks of footage in the cloud for later viewing. While Ring has had past issues with privacy and security that should not be taken lightly, recent updates to their software suggest that they’re learning from their mistakes, and at $99, this is the best entry-level video doorbell you can buy.
When we first featured this UV phone sanitizer on SPY, we said that it was the perfect gift for germaphobes, and during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic it was our #1 pick among the best tech gifts. We may be sick and tired of thinking about germs right now, but this UV sanitizer is still one of our favorite gadgets to gift our friends and family.
The PhoneSoap Pro version remains a staff favorite for its dual functionality. It isn’t just a device that sanitizes smartphones, tablets, jewelry, face masks and other small objects in just a few minutes through UV light technology. You can also use it to charge other portable devices with a USB port. For obvious reasons, PhoneSoap is having a tough time keeping this device in stock, so if you find it available, don’t hesitate to place an order. It’s the perfect gift, but we also recommend owning one for yourself.
SteelSeries Arctis 7P
To get the best multiplayer experience on your next-gen console, you need a top-tier gaming headset. Our pick is the SteelSeries Arctis 7P. It works with just about every gaming machine via USB-C dongle and offers some of the best comfort and battery life in the category. More importantly, the audio performance is well balanced to enjoy crisp-sounding dialogue, effects, and video game scores.
Read More: The Best PS5 Gaming Headsets of the Year
Chromecast with Google TV
For the second year in a row, Google’s latest Chromecast TV streaming device is one of the top tech gifts of the year. Google’s Chromecast media streamers have always been great because they let you wirelessly push content from most streaming apps on your phone to your TV, but sometimes you just want to sit back on a couch and surf through a list of TV shows with a remote. Google got the memo and are now offering up Chromecast with Google TV to make it easier to load up the shows you love.
This little streamer still does everything that the old Chromecast used to, but now has the Google TV smart UI baked in, which provides a curated selection of TV shows and movies for you to peruse, and then watch in 4K Dolby Vision. It’s also still as affordable as ever, making this a great stocking stuffer for the Netflix fiend on your shopping list.
Amazon Fire HD 10
If a tablet is just a thing you occasionally use to browse the web when you’re on the couch, control smart home devices or watch movies on a flight, it’s probably not worth spending upwards of $1000 on an iPad. And while the Amazon Fire HD 10 may not be as flashy or come with as much storage as the iPad Pro the 12-hour battery life is better than Apple’s top option. In addition, hands-free Alexa can make navigating through content and apps as simple as talking. It’s one of the best tablets for entertainment, especially when you consider its small price tag compared to other top-rated tablets. If you mostly want to access apps like Netflix, Spotify, Instagram, Kindle and Amazon Prime, then this affordable tablet is more than up for the job.
Fitbit Charge 5
Some people may find a smartwatch to be overkill, though they’re still interested in having some sort of a fitness tracker. For them, the Fitbit Charge 5 is a great gift choice. Sleek and minimal, this wearable comes with built-in GPS to see your real-time pace and distance, while tracking steps, workouts, heart rate, sleep habits, stress, and more. But it’s still more than just a fitness tracker, as it’s able to relay notifications from your phone. It also comes preloaded with 20 exercise modes and SmartTrack automatic exercise recognition to pick up on your movements. There’s a reason why Will Smith has this strapped around his wrist.
Sony WH-1000XM4 Noise-Cancelling Headphones
Whether you’re working at home, the local coffee shop or in an office, there is no shortage of distractions that pull you away from tasks that require all of your mental energy. In those scenarios, you want a quality pair of noise-cancelling headphones, and there is no better pair than the Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones. In addition to noise-cancelling capabilities that are only rivaled by the likes of Bose, Sony’s premium cans also have sound quality that’s unrivaled among Bluetooth headphones, making this one of the essential tech products of the year — and for the second year in a row!
Fellow Stagg Electric Gooseneck Kettle
Got a friend who loves their morning cup of tea or cup of joe? Then this stylish, sleek and high-performing kettle from Fellow is a no-brainer gift. It’s got a simple aesthetic as well as an intuitive design that works for making a cup of tea, pour-over coffee or other morning coffee alternative. The gooseneck is stainless steel and designed to give you a powerful but precise pour every time. This kettle is built with a 1200-watt quick-heating element inside that makes boiling water a breeze, and an easy-to-read LCD screen indicates your set temperature and the real-time temperature of the liquid so you can track progress.
Apple MacBook Pro M1 Max (2021)
Apple knows how to create beautiful, powerful, and streamlined hardware. The M1 MacBook Air series couldn’t be more exemplary of this, but it’s the new M1 Max-equipped MacBook Pro that has computer nerds salivating. It offers best-in-class performance with faster speed and benchmarks that outperform most Windows laptops. Up to 17 hours of battery life is expected on a full charge. You also get a 1080p FaceTime HD camera, high-fidelity six-speaker sound system, and stronger mics to communicate clearly over video calls. We’re not exaggerating when we say this is the most impressive laptop ever made.
Philips SmartSleep Wake-Up Light
We all know one. Some people cannot get up and out of bed in the mornings. And if your friend or loved one has tried every conceivable alarm clock on the market, gift them this SmartSleep Wake-Up Light from Philips. What makes this thing great is that it slowly grows brighter and brighter to help them wake up, as opposed to ripping them from deep sleep with a jarring noise. The clock comes with an FM Radio as well as five natural alarm sounds, so your giftee can customize their wake-up to their heart’s content.
JBL Clip 4 Portable Waterproof Wireless Bluetooth Speaker
Looking to buy a gift for the music lover in your life? Well, if they’re anything like some of our music-loving colleagues, singing in the shower is a regular routine. To help them find their rhythm while sudsing up, gift them this well-priced waterproof speaker from JBL. Not only is the Clip 4 made to handle wet conditions thanks to its IP67 waterproof (and dustproof) rating, but it also has a clip that’s integrated into the speaker itself. So, regardless of your giftee’s shower setup, there will be a place to hang this lovely little speaker.
When you want a premium typing experience on an iPad Pro, the Magic Keyboard provides just that. With comfortable, soft and backlit keys, it’s essentially an affordable way to turn your iPad Pro into a MacBook Pro. And with a floating cantilever, you really can get the best viewing angles possible. It’s one of our favorite iPad accessories for a reason, and you may end up buying one for yourself, too.
Apple Pencil (2nd Generation)
For some, an iPad is just a big phone. You download apps, maybe read or watch movies, but otherwise just endlessly consume media. However, there are those who pick up an iPad for creating, and for those people, there is no better gift than an Apple Pencil. Like the iPad itself, the Apple Pencil is far from cheap. At nearly $130, this instrument of creation is just expensive enough for the starving artist in your life to resist buying it themselves. While there are some solid Apple Pencil alternatives, none really work as well as the original.
LARQ Self-Cleaning Water Bottle
Have you ever attempted to clean a S’well or Hydro Flask water bottle? It’s torture. The LARQ is a more inventive and resourceful alternative that takes all of the hard work out of maintaining a reusable water bottle by performing the cleaning all on its own. A self-cleaning mode is programmed into each bottle, activating a UV-C LED light that eliminates up to 99.9% of harmful, odor-causing germs on the inside. You can purify water in as little as two hours and store it cold for 24 hours. How refreshing.
Apple iPhone 13
Can you believe we’ve made it to thirteen generations of the iPhone? While the improvements brought to every new version have been marginal, they are effective enough to warrant the upgrade. All four versions of the iPhone 13 deliver a fantastic user experience, spearheaded by the powerful A15 Bionic chip and iOS 15. Battery life is longer than the iPhone 12 lineup. If you’re really in the giving mood and the budget allows, the more expensive 13 Pro and 13 Pro Max treat you to a third rear camera with 3x optical zoom and ProMotion screen for smoother scrolling. As always, Apple continues to put out the most wanted smartphones of the holidays.
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
You know at least one person who is anti-iPhone and owns an Android smartphone. It’s also likely that the smartphone they own is a Samsung Galaxy model. Well, if they’re seeking a fun accessory to complement their Galaxy experience, surprise them with Samsung’s latest smartwatch. The Galaxy Watch 4 has a clean design with swappable bands to accessorize one’s outfit, along with smart software that performs fast and a new health sensor for accurate body composition analysis.
Something else that’s cool about this device is that you can control playback on the Galaxy Buds 2 directly from your wrist. Knowing how often Samsung discounts its products, it’s worth bookmarking this page to see if you can snag the Galaxy Watch 4 cheaper during big sales events such as Prime Day and Black Friday.
Beats Fit Pro
If you love the AirPods Pro, but want something sportier, the Beats Fit Pro is your dream come true. These buds come with affixed eartips that enhance in-ear stability when exercising while delivering grade-A active noise cancellation and solid battery life. They boast many of Apple’s high-end features, including Adaptive EQ that automatically adjusts frequencies for more precise sound and Spatial Audio to enjoy select Apple Music songs and Dolby Atmos-supported content in 3D. This type of performance for $50 less than Apple’s flagship buds is a steal.
Amazon Echo Smart Speaker
If you know someone with an Alexa-controlled smart home, the new Echo is a must-buy accessory. The latest iteration of Amazon’s flagship smart speaker has an integrated Zigbee hub, so adding accessories such as Philips Hue lighting or Leviton smart plugs can all connect to Alexa without the need for an additional hub or bridge. Amazon also overhauled the audio components in this speaker, promising noticeably improved audio over previous versions. Plus we’re loving the new orb-shaped design, which will still look modern in 2030.
Google Nest Mini
When it comes to smart homes powered by Google Assistant, the Nest Mini is one of the cheapest and easiest speakers for managing a house full of connected devices. Even if someone on your shopping list already has a Nest Mini, chances are there’s a room or two where they don’t have access to a voice assistant, and the more places you can command Google Assistant to do your bidding, the smarter your home becomes.
August Wi-Fi Smart Lock
If you want to drag your friends and family into the 21st century, smart home gear is a great way to do that, and the August Wi-Fi smart lock is one of the most convenient starting points. This connected device fits over an existing deadbolt and allows you to lock and unlock your door with your phone, or with a Google/Alexa/Siri voice-enabled speaker. You can even control the door when you’re not home, set a schedule for it to activate, or get notifications when someone is coming or going.
Ninja DZ401 Foodi 6-in-1 XL 2-Basket Air Fryer
Air fryers are more popular than ever and continue to make excellent cooking gifts. Our pick is Ninja’s latest Foodi model. This dual-basket air fryer independently cooks meals and has intelligible features like Smart Finish Technology that makes sure what’s heating in each basket is ready to enjoy at the same time. It also comes with six versatile cooking programs to enjoy food in different ways: Air Fry, Air Broil, Roast, Bake, Reheat, and Dehydrate. Basically, it can whip up everything from wings to fish to homemade jerky to baked goods.
Anker 622 Magnetic Battery Wireless Portable Charger
We’ve officially entered the MagSafe era of mobile charging, as Apple’s proprietary charging system has mobile accessory manufacturers rushing out products to accommodate the iPhone 13 launch. For the fortunate ones who have scored any one of Apple’s four new smartphones, they’ll want to have a dual-functioning wireless portable charger by their side. Anker cleverly designed the 622 Magnetic Battery to double as a kickstand, letting you charge the iPhone vertically or horizontally for easy viewing. The product also works to charge other USB-C-enabled devices up to 17 hours.
This is a great stocking stuffer for a tech lover or practical gift for a coworker, as everyone’s got devices that need charging on-the-go.
Twelve South PowerPic Mod Wireless Charger
Twelve South earned their popularity by creating awesome Bluetooth transmitters for wireless headphones; the AirFly Pro has been clutch when flying with AirPods. The company has transitioned into a more well-rounded accessory maker and has one of the coolest wireless chargers: the PowerPic Mod. Laying it on the stand will charge your smartphone, cable-free, as well as your wireless earbuds. The real kicker is that you can customize it with any 4×6 photo or custom graphic, having it double as a sleek photo frame. It’s a highly functional and gorgeous gift that won’t bleed your wallet dry.
Razer Barracuda X Gaming Headset
Your baby bro might already have the new PlayStation 5, but does he have all of the best next-gen console accessories. The least you can do is get him a decent gaming headset to make his Fortnite Friday nights special. Our recommendation: the Razer Barracuda X. This multi-platform wireless headset guarantees premium performance at a reasonable cost. It feels extremely comfortable, delivers great sound, and comes with a sharp-sounding microphone to communicate to players clearly during team deathmatches.
Ultimate Ears Hyperboom
Ultimate Ears already makes some of the best portable speakers, but just when we thought it couldn’t go any bigger (or louder), along came the Hyperboom. This sonic beast is powered by 4.5-inch woofers, a pair of 1-inch tweeters, and two passive radiators that unleash ground-rattling audio; the bass response outperforms most home entertainment systems. It has some cool features as well, like one-touch controls, two Bluetooth connections, and an adaptive EQ that automatically adjusts the sound to the environment. Despite its larger form, the Hyperboom was designed as a modern boombox that can be easily transported via a durable strap, making it the ideal sound system for pool parties and rooftop gatherings. Having 24 hours of battery life ensures the party never stops.
Ring Stick Up Cam
This more flexible version of the popular security camera provides peace of mind for homeowners who value privacy. Users have the luxury of answering and monitoring the front door, or any area of their property for that matter, directly on their smartphone and can communicate with visitors via two-way talk. There is even an Infrared Night Vision mode to spot intruders and unwanted guests. It’s a smart home gift that your dad or husband won’t see coming.
Oral-B iO Series 6 Electric Toothbrush
When it comes to that fresh from the dentist feel, nothing beats an electric toothbrush. And when it comes to electric toothbrushes, Oral-B’s newest release will have you smiling brighter than a celebrity at a Marvel red carpet premiere. This toothbrush uses gentle micro-vibrations to scrub your teeth clean and has AI recognition to help guide you efficiently through the brushing process. Another reason we favor the Series 6 is because the Oral-B replacement brush heads are cheap and easy to find, meaning you won’t be stuck paying exorbitant fees to use this for years to come.
How often does your partner’s iPhone or AirPods Pro go “missing?” Don’t answer that. Instead, surprise them with a handful of Apple’s Bluetooth trackers, which make finding lost Apple products easy through the FindMy network. Setting them up is a breeze, the Precision Finding feature works accurately, and security is top-notch with each AirTag encrypted to protect your privacy. You may draw a quizzical stare once they open the gift, but they’ll be thankful weeks down the line when that accompanying iPhone 13 you got them on Cyber Monday winds up being “misplaced.”
Roku Streaming Stick 4K and 4K Plus
If your parents still can’t figure out how to enjoy 4K content, make life easier for them by installing the Roku Streaming Stick 4K or 4K Plus into their UHD TV. The setup is effortless, and Roku’s user-friendly interface is simple to navigate. Features like intuitive universal search will inform them of what movies and shows they can stream in 4K, Dolby Vision, and HDR10+ picture. The 4K Plus offers more value with a rechargeable remote and aux jack to plug headphones in for private listening. And if you’re torn between purchasing one of these or an Amazon Fire Stick, Roku’s models are on sale across all major online retailers, narrowing down the decision to preference.
Philips Hue Bluetooth Bulbs
Some of the people on your shopping list might already have a few Philips smart bulbs installed on their light fixtures. But they may not yet know about the new Bluetooth-enabled version. The latest and greatest Philips Hue bulb lets you automate smart home lighting from a smartphone, so you won’t have to rely on the wired Hub Bridge. Staying within wireless range allows you to control the same tasks as the previous model, such as changing colors and lighting effects, setting timers and enabling other commands using Alexa or Google Assistant.
Theragun Prime Massage Gun
If you’ve got a fitness-obsessed friend who needs some elite help with recovery, then Therabody is where you’ll find their gift. They make, hands down, the best massage guns on the market. They are, however, a little pricey. Since most of us don’t have the funds to keep a Swedish masseuse on retainer, the Theragun Prime fills that much-needed void for post-workout recovery without seriously breaking the bank. Some of Therabody’s best guns will set you back upwards of $600, whereas the Prime is $300. Still an elite gift, but not absurdly expensive, and definitely worth it.
The Theragun Prime comes with an ergonomic multi-grip and a QuietForce motor for the percussive therapy you’re looking for without a lot of extra noise. It’s got 120 minutes of battery life on a single charge and comes with four different, interchangeable massage gun heads.
Air Audio Pull-Apart Wireless Speakers
Sonos was onto something when they introduced the concept of wireless multi-room sound many years back. The Air Audio takes it to the next level, allowing you to pull apart all five speakers and place them around the entire house to achieve full surround sound. You can leave one in each room and have music play from the same audio source or bring them together to form one powerful soundbar. The sleek and rugged exterior is attractive and comes IPX4 water-resistant, in case you ever decide to take a speaker into the shower.
Even among the year’s top tech gifts, these pull-apart speakers are certainly unique.
FitBark 2 Dog Activity Monitor
What a world we’re living in when our pets have their own wearables. The FitBark 2 Dog Activity Monitor is basically a Fitbit for dogs, built to monitor everything from the distances they’ve walked to the quality of their sleep. The battery lasts up to six months and can sync with your wearable fitness tracker device to give you the health information you need to detect signs of disease or underlying health issues in your pup. It’s a small, plastic device you can easily attach to their collar and it syncs with a smartphone app so you’ve always got up-to-date information at your fingertips.
Poly Studio P5 Webcam
There’s still a huge number of people who don’t feel safe jumping on a flight to come home for the holidays. We totally respect that. A webcam can soften the blow of not being around family by allowing you to show face on Christmas day, remotely. The Poly Studio P5 is a strong option that produces great picture quality, even greater sound, and has a USB port to connect a headset, should you have one lying around for professional Zoom calls. Furthermore, the price point is just right at under $100. Mom and Dad will love seeing their child’s smile in 1080p resolution.
Wyze Cam Smart Home Camera
A $25 indoor security camera with 1080p HD resolution, smart features, cloud storage, digital assistant support and night vision almost sounds too good to be true. Brace yourself, because it’s a reality, and one that you can generously gift to several others who value home privacy. It even has a person-detection feature to inform homeowners when guests arrive, along with a smoke and carbon monoxide detection feature. And, if you really want to, you can repurpose this as a webcam if you want to step up your Zoom game. Now that’s advanced functionality for a cube-sized camera.
Sportneer Massage Gun
This Sportneer massage gun is one of our favorite massage guns, especially in the budget category. It’s just under $100 and includes a lot of the functionality you want out of a top-notch gun at a much more affordable price. Our product reviewers were very impressed with the features, the battery life, and the noise level.
The high-torque brushless motor comes with five speed levels between 1200-3200 RPM, very solid for a budget gun and all that the average massage gun user needs on a weekly basis. It also comes with six different massage gun heads for targeting different areas of the body, and it’s lightweight and portable. If Therabody’s guns aren’t within your budget this is an excellent alternative for anyone on your list.
Apple HomePod Mini
The original HomePod was a hard sell, even for Apple fanboys. It never really took off like the tech giant’s other products, but that hasn’t stopped Apple from expanding their wireless speaker lineup. And we’re glad they did because HomePod Mini is something that every iPhone owner should pick up. Affordability aside, it sounds really good for its size and Siri operates flawlessly. It also blends nicely with bedroom and living room décor.
Meater Smart Food Thermometer
A good food thermometer is a must-have when it comes to searing the perfect steak (or not poisoning your dinner party guests), but if you’re shopping for someone whose kitchen skills still have some room for improvement, give them the Meater. You can stick this connected food thermometer in whatever you’re cooking and leave it in there for the duration. Meater will walk you through every step of the cooking process, and when the food reaches the desired temperature that you set in the accompanying app, you will receive a notification that its time to pull your culinary masterpiece from the heat.
GoPro Hero 10 Black
Another year, another GoPro release on our list of the best tech gifts. This time around, the action-camera maker developed a new engine for the Hero 10 Black that pushes frame rates higher and faster than before. The lens is now made up of hydrophobic, water-shedding glass that has stronger scratch resistance and captures footage with reduced ghosting. Improved in-camera software and a sleek design with both a front display and rear touch screen make usability more streamlined than ever before. If you have an adventurous friend or family member, this is the gift they want.
Eero Mesh Smart Router
The average consumer cares little about the technical side of WiFi. They just want something that’s simple to set up and guarantees the fastest results. Well, this revised version of the highly popular Eero Mesh router simplifies your relationship with your home network through smarter wireless management and voice commands. For instance, you can ask Alexa to pause WiFi on all smartphones and route that power towards your smart TV to establish a stronger streaming connection. Excellent. Tech illiterates worried about the setup process can also breathe easy knowing it takes 10 minutes (or less) to get up and running. Its most rewarding feature: that price tag. A set of three should guarantee zero dropouts during Fortnite sessions.
Canon EOS M50
Whether you’re shopping for someone who has taken up photography as a hobby, wants to get into vlogging or live-streaming, or just wants to up their Instagram game, the Canon EOS M50 camera is an excellent starter camera and great tech gift.
Thanks to its 24-megapixel sensor, interchangeable lenses, ability to shoot 4K video, face and eye-tracking, as well as the ability to function as a high-resolution webcam, this is a camera built to excel in a variety of scenarios. And because of its relatively compact size, it’s easy to carry around or use one-handed. But the best part is that for all the features you get, this is a very affordable camera, providing more bang for the buck than most similar cameras.
Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio
Not everyone is an Apple person. For the Microsoft lover seeking out their own premium MacBook alternative, feast your eyes on the Surface Laptop Studio. It shares many similarities to its macOS counterpart, from the keyboard and trackpad layout to the port selection, but it’s a more versatile machine. The bright and flexible screen can position at different angles to easy draw on it. Build quality is superb, highlighted by an all-aluminum design. A dedicated graphics card keeps visuals looking sharp, something artists will appreciate most. The four-speaker system with subwoofers pumps out dynamic sound as well.
Eufy RoboVac X8 Hybrid
Cleaning the house during the holidays is a nightmare. So, for the person hosting Christmas next year, have the family chip in to get them this awesome robot vacuum and mop cleaner. The RoboVac X8 Hybrid has twin turbines that pick up everything from heavy dirtballs to pet hair, while simultaneously mopping the floor with up to 250ml of water in the tank. You can also control it via voice activation (e.g., Siri, Google Assistant) and set up virtual no-go zones that keep the machine from entering certain areas. It’ll do all the work as you’re resting on the couch.
Wyze Scale S
Some of the best smart scales range in price, though many will tell you that the lower-priced models often provide the best bang for your buck. We’ve never seen a smart scale priced as low as the Wyze Scale S, though having tested several of the brand’s smart home and audio products, we can assure you that high quality is guaranteed. It’s compatible with fitness apps like Apple Health and Google Fit and tracks up to 11 different body composition metrics. There’s even a baby/pet mode that new parents can enable to monitor their child’s weight.
Xbox Series X
The shortage of next-gen consoles has shoppers scrambling. We’re not going to tell you which is the better buy between Microsoft and Sony’s machines because each one is spectacular in its own ways. What we can do is recommend the one that is likely to be most available come Black Friday: the Xbox Series X. This gaming tower comes the closest to replicating the performance of a high-powered PC gaming rig, delivering smooth 4K/60fps gameplay. Dolby Vision and Atmos support bring an immersive feel to video games that you’ve never experienced on any console. There’s also backward compatibility to hundreds of games.
Wahl Manscaper Body Groomer
All that body fur is keeping you warm for the winter, but once summertime hits, you’re going to itch at the opportunity to shave it all off. To manscape properly without ending up in the emergency room, invest in a versatile body trimmer. The Wahl Manscaper Body Groomer works for both wet and dry trim jobs, has 20 adjustable cutting lengths and a wrap-around safety trimming guard to protect skin from nicks and cuts. It’s portable enough to toss in your dopp kit, should you be so inclined to travel with it, and a full battery gets you 100 minutes of use.
We recently named this the best mascaper of the year in The 2021 Man, our end-of-year men’s product awards. For the well-groomed guy in your life, this is one of the top gadgets to put under the tree.
Petcube Bites 2 Lite
Owning an animal is a serious commitment, one that can often interfere with your getaway plans. This automatic food dispenser and motion camera system will make sure you feed your furry child while away from the house and keep tabs on their activity through full HD 1080p live streaming video. There is also two-way audio communication to speak and soothe them from miles away. Setting up the device only takes a minute, so you can get it working the same morning before jumping on a flight to paradise.
Petcube Bites 2 Lite Interactive WiFi Pet Monitoring Camera with Phone App and Treat Dispenser
Tajeezo PZ5 Smart Backpack
The Tajeezo PZ5 Smart Backpack keeps your belongings in a futuristic impact-resistant hard shell. Still, the “smart” tag in its name refers to the other features built into that shell. It has an onboard LED light to keep you visible at night. The PZ5 will charge your smartphone or other devices. It offers a Bluetooth speaker and a microphone to take calls You end up carrying the equivalent of five other devices with your collected stuff.
HidrateSpark TAP Smart Water Bottle
Sometimes, the most thoughtful presents are often the ones that promote health first. You might think we’re talking about a fitness tracker, but, in fact, we’re referring to this smart water bottle. What’s so special about it? The HidrateSpark TAP holds you accountable for your daily water intake with a glowing light at the bottom that reminds you every hour over a 12-hour span to drink up, while recording progress in the app. NFC tags were integrated into the design, so you can track a full bottle when tapping your smartphone on it. For $20, this is one of the cooler, less expensive gifts worth buying in bulk to distribute among the family.
Gsyker Astronomical Refracting Telescope
Know someone who plans on taking up stargazing in the New Year? Then you better start searching for a good telescope. The Gysker is the best telescope overall with a 400-millimeter focal length, 700-millimeter aperture, and a wireless remote to take celestial images on your phone. Two replaceable eyepieces come with the purchase, along with a 5×24 finder scope and a mounting bracket that has crosshair lines to find objects more easily.
Smart locks can be eyesores, which is why the Level Lock exists. Instead of having bulky keypads on the outside and an equally ginormous box over the latch on the inside of your door, the Level Lock looks much like a traditional lock — but with all the smarts you’d expect in a smart lock. With its contemporary design, the Level Lock can match just about any decor. Plus, it still offers many advanced features, such as automatic lock/unlock, temporary access for users, geofencing, and notifications whenever the door is opened. No other smart lock looks this good.
Rode Wireless Go II
Rode’s latest wireless microphone system is a must-have tool for content creators. Whether you’re using a mirrorless camera for a professional shoot, or simply a smartphone to create interesting TikTok videos, the Rode Wireless Go II will make sure you can still get incredible audio wirelessly. This newest model is even better than its predecessor in so many ways, packaged with two wireless microphones for when you have two individuals on-camera speaking at the same time. You’ll up your audio quality in no time at all.
Pixel Liber RGB Video Light
Whether you’re a content creator shooting YouTube videos at home, or working remotely at home with several video calls throughout the day, the Pixel Liber RGB Video Light is sure to keep you properly lit for that perfect look each and every time. Don’t be fooled by its compact size, which is smaller than most smartphones, because it puts out a lot of strong light. We also like the fact that you can choose many different colors for either a unique look on your subject or as an accent or mood light. This Bluetooth-enabled LED light panel can also be controlled through an app, in addition to the on-board controls it offers. With so many features, including some neat lighting effects to choose from, the Pixel Liber is one of the most versatile camera lights around — and yes, it can be magnetically attached to surfaces too!
Rode’s been the king of wireless microphones with its popular Rode Go Wireless series of portable mics, but there’s a new kid in town that’s making an impression. The DJI Mic is a complete, all-in-one wireless microphone system perfect for enthusiasts who are looking for better audio quality when using smartphones, mirrorless cameras, and other filmmaking gear. Compact in size and featuring two wireless transmitters plus a receiver, we absolutely love that everything is stored neatly in a case that also doubles as the charger.
Tozo W1 Wireless Charger
Looking for another simple gift that won’t break the bank? Then check out the Tozo W1 Wireless Charger. What makes this particular wireless charger different is its razor thin, almost the size of your average drink coaster. We even managed to spend a considerable amount of time testing it out. When you factor in its ultra-affordable cost, you can outfit your entire home with these wireless chargers without spending a fortune. SPY has tested and reviewed this charger, and it’s one of the best and most affordable tech gifts for any occasion.