Over the last decade or so, gadgets have become a staple option for stocking stuffers, with their affordable prices, genuine utility, and overall appeal. Everyone loves their electronics these days, after all, and with the wide selection of attractively-priced gadgets out there, it’s not that hard to find something that the folks in your shopping list are likely to appreciate.
Here are some of our favorite tech stocking stuffers this year.
IKEA’s AAA and AA battery charger is designed to look like a small book, allowing you to keep it out in the open without appearing like the typical eyesore that battery chargers tend to look like. It has eight slots for recharging eight individual cells at a time, complete with the ability to automatically go on standby when it detects a battery is fully charged. If your recipient uses a lot of AAs and AAAs, this is exactly the kind of thing they’d love to receive.
While Joby’s desktop tripod is a great tool for social media content creators looking to use their phones for shooting photos and videos, it’s just as useful for anyone who wants to free up their hands while using their phone, whether they’re reading a book, watching a video, or shooting a selfie. It has a clamp mount that should accommodate any size of phone, all while getting the flexible GorillaPod legs that allow it to wrap around poles, beams, and all sorts of objects for limitless mounting possibilities.
This Bluetooth tracker lets you keep tabs on where everything is located, from keys and wallets to luggage and other equipment. It can help you quickly locate any item within 400 feet by activating the device’s alarm, all while showing you the most recent location on the app for those times that it’s not within the wireless signal’s range. They also use a crowdsourced system that can help find objects from further distances, although you’ll have to opt in to the network, which could bring up some privacy concerns (hey, some people still care about privacy in 2021).
The best thing about true wireless earbuds? The lack of wires that can get in your way. The worst thing about true wireless earbuds? The lack of wires makes them so small that you can easily lose them. That’s why we’ve long loved these super-cheap ear buds, which bring the same completely wire-free function at a price that’s low enough you won’t mind losing them as much you would those high-end $200 in-ears. While affordable, they’re not lacking in features, with IPX4 water resistance, touch controls, and 32 hours total playback time (8 in the buds, 24 in the case).
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Apple’s take on the wireless tracker goes beyond Bluetooth to help you find missing objects, taking advantage of the outfit’s wide install base for its products, all of which remain on constant lookout for AirTags in the vicinity. That means, you’re not just using your iPhone to figure out where a missing object is located, you’re using the network of all Apple devices, which will increase your chances of finding it exponentially. For iPhone users, this thing offers the best way to quickly locate items, whether they were misplaced, stolen, or just ended up somewhere inexplicably.
Is it the best wired earbuds out there? We don’t know. It is, however, one of the most unique, with a gaming-centric design that gives it a removable unidirectional boom mic to ensure crystal-clear chat while you coordinate with your teammates and interact with other players. That’s right, it’s a pair of earbuds with an integrated boom mic. It has 10mm speakers, interchangeable in-ear tips, and a 3.5mm connector that lets you use it with practically any gaming device.
Amazon’s most popular Alexa-powered speaker is now a little bigger, with an orb-like shape as opposed to the puck form factor of its previous iterations. It’s still small, allowing you to fit it nearly anywhere in your home, while coming with decent-enough sound courtesy of the 1.6-inch driver to make it viable for listening to your favorite playlists and podcasts.
Even if your recipient doesn’t plan to do any streaming, a USB mic can be useful with the amount of videoconferencing going on these days. This model delivers a tight pickup angle for really zoning in on their voice and minimizing background noise, while a tilting stand lets them find the perfect-sounding angle without the complicated setup of other mics. When your recipient does decide to do streaming or content creation on their desktop, they can take the mic off the stand for mounting on a standard boom arm or larger stand with its built-in mounting thread.
Rocketbook’s letter-sized notebook comes with 42 pages, divided across seven different page styles to serve all sorts of writing lists. There are lined pages, dot-grip leaves, task lists, weekly planners, monthly planners, OKR goal templates, and idea lists, so just choose the pages you need for each writing task. Designed for easy digital conversion, you simply take the companion app and take a photo of any page you want to digitize. You can mark icons at the bottom of each page, too, in case you want the app to automatically send it to a specific folder on your platform of choice, eliminating any manual organization work you’ll have to do afterwards. The best part? When you use it with Pilot FriXion pens, the pages are completely reusable, as you can simply wipe the pages clean after digitizing them.
This compact Bluetooth keyboard can fit in the smallest workspaces, all while pairing with up to three devices simultaneously. Even better, you can switch to any of those three devices on the fly, allowing you to type on your PC one moment, respond to an email on your tablet the next, and type on a group chat on your phone after that seamlessly. It’s compatible with Macs, Windows, Chrome, Android, iOS, and even Apple TV.
Razer’s gaming mouse boasts an 8KHz polling rate, meaning it sends data to your PC at a whopping rate of 8,000 times per second. That equates to a latency of 0.125 milliseconds, which is a downright insane number even for a gaming peripheral. It’s so nuts, in fact, that it’s the lowest latency ever achieved on a mouse. Other features include an optical sensor that boasts 99.6 percent resolution accuracy, the outfit’s 2nd-gen optical switches, and a woven cable that allows smooth swipes with very little drag.
Truth be told, you can’t go wrong with any of the streaming devices out there, as they all bring similar features and capabilities. For this list, however, we’re recommending this Chromecast with Google TV bundle, which lets you stream movies and shows from any online service out there, all while getting the Google TV interface that makes it way easier to navigate. It also comes with an included remote that includes a circular D-pad for easily going through lists, shortcut buttons for YouTube and Netflix, and an Assistant button that gives you quick access to voice commands, so you can just tell the darn thing what you want to watch without having to fiddle with multiple things onscreen.
Satechi R2 Bluetooth Multimedia Remote for Apple Devices
With offices back in action, it’s time to immerse yourself in regular meetings and presentations. That means, going through presentation slides while you stand in front of an office boardroom. If you’re an Apple user, this remote will make those presentations go a whole lot smoother, all while working with an onscreen laser pointer that can be activated in both PowerPoint and Keynote. More than a presentation tool, it can pull double duty as a multimedia remote for those times you’re bingeing shows, watching movies, or listening to your music playlists after a long day at the office.
For the security-obsessed techie in your holiday list, this security dongle lets them beef up not just their PC and smartphone logins with two-factor authentication, it can bring the same to most online services you use. On PC, you can just stick it to a USB slot for automatic two-factor authentication as you work. For smartphones and tablets, you can use the built-in NFC to do the same by simply tapping it to a compatible device. It supports multiple protocols, including FIDO2, FIDO U2F, OpenPGP, and more, all while being crush-resistant and water-resistant, so you can bring it with you anywhere you go.
JBL’s ultra-portable speaker comes in the size of an oversized padlock, all while delivering surprisingly big audio with a punchy bass sound. No, the low-end frequencies won’t be as heavy as when listening to that monstrosity of a speaker in your living room, but it is a very recognizable presence you don’t typically hear in speakers this compact. It’s IP67 waterproof, by the way, so you can take it during runs, workouts, and hikes, although the battery is only rated for five hours of playback between charges, so you might want to bring a power bank for extended outdoor stays.
Most outdoor security cams will run your north of a hundred dollars. Not only will they need to do a good job of capturing video of movement outside your home, they will have to do that while braving the onslaught of the elements, too, after all. That’s why it’s such a surprise to see this outdoor security cam from Wyze, which brings impressive features like a spotlight, night vision, intelligent motion detection, alarm siren, voice control, and even local storage at an incredible price point.
This unique dongle turns a USB slot in your laptop into an HDMI input port, allowing you to connect your console to your laptop. Why? So you can use the laptop screen as your gaming TV. More than turning your $1,000 laptop into a glorified monitor, though, having that console gameplay on PC means you can now use PC software to capture and record your games, eliminating the need to purchase separate capture accessories for each of your gaming consoles.
Anker’s laptop chargers use gallium nitride in place of silicon, allowing them to come in smaller sizes while facilitating efficient energy transfer. The result are chargers that are as small as smartphone charger plugs, all while delivering up to 65W for delivering fast charge to any laptop, tablet, or smartphone that supports it. How fast? According to the outfit, it can top up a MacBook Air completely in under two hours, allowing you to spend less time plugged into a wall outlet.