Hey friends- Andrew here. I hope you’re well!
It’s that beautiful season of the year again, and I’ll share the best tech gifts at all sorts of budgets to help spoil your friends and family or hey maybe even spoil yourself!
I’ll start with the most affordable products and then move up in price, from work accessories and peripherals like Orbitkey’s new and really useful portable laptop mat to a mini Nespresso coffee machine, custom earbuds, and even Leica’s surprisingly affordable hybrid digital camera that I’ve been loving.
Let’s just get stuck right into the first product!
1-2. Ugreen Nexode RG 30W ($25.99) and 65W Chargers ($49.99)
First up is the really quirky GaN charger, and at only less than $26, it makes for a great, casual present or stocking stuffer.
It’s Ugreen’s Nexode RG 30W charger, and it’s a fun take on your traditional charger – it looks more like a cute figurine you’d display on a shelf than a charger.
But once you pop off its magnetic feet, you’ve got a properly fast GaN charger that’s able to fast charge my iPhone 14 from 0 to about 60% in just 30 minutes.
They also have a bigger 65W version that can charge 3 devices simultaneously.
The LED display at the front actually displays a cute face when it’s plugged in, but it’s also practical because it shows the charging status: it changes to a happy face when it’s completely charged.
I’ve plugged it into a 7-in-1 charging hub, but it’ll work in your usual wall outlet, too.
And as cute and simple as it is, it’s still a solid GaN charger, so it charges faster than silicon chargers and can handle higher power levels without overheating; it’s a must-get if you have a lot of tech.
At $26, it is an affordable and nifty gift for just about anyone.
3. BACKBONE One Mobile Gaming Controller ($70)
Next is the BACKBONE One Gaming Controller, and there are plenty of deals floating around for this at the $70 mark, which I think is a great buy.
The controller snaps onto your Android or iPhone and transforms it into a portable gaming device.
Adding quality physical buttons makes mobile gaming infinitely better and frees up screen space so your fingers aren’t tapping and blocking the screen.
I feel like the controller adds such an unfair advantage in games like Call of Duty Mobile – it’s never been easier to rack up multi-kills.
It even supports Xbox Cloud Gaming for a fully-fledged gaming experience on your mobile through the Backbone app, and the controller itself is compact enough to take anywhere.
Just be careful; I had to return the first one I ordered because it wasn’t compatible with my iPhone 15 without an Android firmware update, which is a widely known issue. So, if you have an iPhone 15, you might want to wait until they fix this issue.
But otherwise, it’s one’s a great gift for any gamer!
4. Orbitkey Hybrid Laptop Sleeve and Compendium ($79)
Orbitkey’s new Hybrid Laptop Sleeve doesn’t just hold your laptop.
It folds out to reveal a dedicated mouse pad area that does a great job tracking mouse movements and it’s also a portable desk mat, which makes it the perfect spot to place the laptop or keyboard.
It’s made with vegan leather and recycled fabrics, and I love that it’s a dual-function sleeve to protect your laptop and doubles as a portable desk mat to work from anywhere.
Remote workers or digital nomads are going to love this one absolutely and at $79 it’s a thoughtful and affordable gift.
5. CleanMyMac X
Next is something a little different, but it will make a great gift for Mac users: CleanMyMac X.
If you know someone who has a cluttered Mac and doesn’t take the time to organize their files and folders – which is probably more people than less – this is the gift for them.
It’s an app that has all sorts of built-in tools to rid Macs of unwanted files, protect against malware, and monitor connected devices.
I’ve been using this app for years, and it has saved me lots of time manually combing through Mac files, cleaning up folders, and from Malware infestations.
It’s made it easy to maintain a healthy Mac by automating cleanup and organization tasks.
And honestly, now is probably one of the best times to buy CleanMyMac X because it’s very rarely discounted.
They’re offering a special discount by using the code “ANDREWGIFT”, you can nab a substantial 30% off on all products and licenses up until the end of the year. Just click this link to see the discount.
Go ahead and check out the app – it’s a gift that keeps on giving so you and your loved ones can make sure your Macs operate in tip-top condition for longer.
6-7. Logitech MX Keys & Anywhere Mouse ($90)
The keyboard and mouse combo is all about its small form factor, quality build, and extra-long battery life.
What I love most about the keyboard is that the typing feel and scissor switches are light and responsive, plus the dished key design looks awesome. It has to be one of my favorite tactile typing experiences.
The MX Anywhere 3 Mouse is made to match the portability of the keyboard – it’s easy enough to throw into a bag or travel pouch, and the 70-day battery life on a single charge comes in clutch, too.
The keyboard and mouse’s clickiness is quiet, so it won’t irritate the people around you if you’re working outside. This is another great gift for someone who travels or works remotely.
8. Anker Soundcore Liberty 4NC Earbuds ($99)
Next is Anker’s Soundcore 4NC Earbuds, and they’re one of the best budget earbuds I’ve used and a great tech gift under $100.
There are a lot of great earbuds out there in this price range but this one is probably one of my favorites.
The stand-out feature of the earbuds is the active noise cancellation – they definitely outperform their budget price. I’ve used these in the gym and on noisy commutes, and they cancel out voices, bus engines, and things like that really well.
The wireless case and earbud design are appealing and lightweight, too, and there’s a ton of EQ customization in the app if that’s your thing.
I use them as a backup to my AirPods Pro, and whenever I use them, they’re honestly not that far off in terms of audio performance. At $99, it doesn’t get much better than this, and they make for a gift that won’t disappoint.
9. Nespresso Essenza Mini ($129)
For coffee drinkers, a Nespresso machine is always a safe bet to gift, and the Essenza Mini is an amazing and affordable coffee machine.
It’s a super compact 5-pound Nespresso machine that brews up a pretty solid espresso. Of course, it’s not cafe-quality, but it’s enough to wake you up in the morning and enjoy the taste of conveniently home-made coffee in seconds.
And considering how small it is, it’s a great addition to almost any space and can be easily tucked away.
Overall, it’s a pretty barebones coffee machine. It’ll only make a single espresso shot or a Lungo, which is just the espresso shot topped with extra water, and that’s it. But it can be bundled with the Aerrocino milk frother to make cappuccinos and lattes.
But yeah, it’s minimalist, extra convenient, and brews up a pretty delicious espresso in a few seconds. At $129, it’s a pretty good long-term buy – make sure to recycle the coffee pods afterwards!
10. Grovemade Note Taking Kit ($270)
Grovemade’s new Note Taking Kit is made with fellow desk setup creator, Matthew Encina.
It would make a solid staple to live on your desk if you’re into manually writing down thoughts or to-do lists.
It’s a multi-piece set of notepads, display rail, and note organizer made from your usual Grovemade quality ingredients like brushed aluminum, solid oak, and German merino wool felt.
And like almost all Grovemade products, the set looks so good on just about any desk and helps lift the space.
There’s not much more to say – it’s a great set to gift to fellow desk setup friends and for fellow setup friends, use the code “AEZ10” so you can save yourself 10%.
11. Philips Sonicare 9900 Prestige ($399)
We’re going to jump up in budget, but these are some seriously cool gadgets you’ll want to check out!
It is a great daily piece of tech for hygiene: an electric toothbrush, but not just any – it is Philip’s Sonicare 9900 Prestige, and it’s possibly the best toothbrush on the market.
For $399, the price makes you wonder why it’s so expensive, but it is a toothbrush that could well save you from trips to the dentist with all the tech jammed in it.
The teeth-tracking tech senses your brushing style and then adapts its speed and intensity in real time to give the perfect brush without any effort. The toothbrush is even voice-enabled.
The AI companion app also gives real-time guidance, progress reports, and recommendations. It’s sort of like a personal dentist in app form.
It’s also just a nice-looking toothbrush with one of the best travel cases and built-in USB-C charging. The Sonicare Prestige – it’s prestigious but pricey.
12. Sonos Move 2 ($450)
The Sonos Move 2 is an incredible portable speaker, and it is a great premium piece of tech to gift to music lovers.
I’ve been using my original Sonos Move for years now, and you really can’t go wrong with it – it’s thoughtfully designed, portable, and has an amazing soundstage to fill a whole room with big bass.
The new Move 2 has some serious improvements: it now has stereo audio that sounds noticeably different and fills the room even better. The battery life has more than doubled to an insane 24 hours of playtime, and the physical controls have been updated to resemble the Sonos Era lineup with the recessed bars and a more refined look.
At $450, it is definitely a premium portable speaker, but I have to say, it does deliver even at its high price tag.
13. Leica Sofort 2 ($389)
The brand new Leica Sofort 2 and it’s a pretty cool hybrid instant camera.
It takes your usual instant photos as you’d expect with a modest 1/5 digital sensor, but it also can double up as a photo printer and print out photos from Leica cameras.
It’s probably the best-looking instant camera I’ve seen on the market with a sturdy build, beautifully shaped curves, and solid-feeling dials and buttons – so when it’s not being used, it’s worth displaying on a shelf, too, since it just looks nice.
Overall, it’s just a fun instant camera to use with friends and family, and at $389, it is really expensive. Still, it’s also by far the most affordable Leica camera and the most well-built instant camera I’ve seen.
If you don’t have a Leica camera, then I’d recommend checking out Fujifilm’s Instax Mini Evo, which is just as good but at half the price.
14. Meta Quest 3 ($499)
Finally, we have the Meta Quest 3 at $499, and it fits right under the $500 budget!
It’s Meta’s latest mixed reality and VR headset, and it’s a huge leap from the Quest 2.
Virtual Reality is more crisp than ever on this headset with the updated pancake lenses and Snapdragon chipset – gaming has been so immersive and way too much fun.
The new mixed reality passthrough mode is the perfect productivity companion for working off multiple screens or watching Netflix and games on an IMAX-sized screen.
It’s a seriously impressive and innovative piece of tech. It’s pricey, but it is a present that I’d imagine would make so many people happy: I’ve bought it around for my friends and family to play with, and seeing their reactions and enjoyment has been priceless.
Conclusion and Giveaway
Win one of two Anker Soundcore Earbuds by sharing with me your own favorite unique tech gadget in the comments of this video, and I’ll pick out a winner next month. Make sure you’ve subscribed and drop a like too. Winners are always announced in our newsletter only.
Let’s remember that the best gift you can truly give is not tech or expensive things but your attention and presence, so I hope you enjoy this festive season with friends and family!