GeekMom Holiday Gift Guide #2: Gadgets and Accessories

Gadgets make life easier, and often more fun. And living in the information age as we do, they are practically necessary for survival. We like products to be faster, more connected, and with more bells and whistles. Which gadgets have we GeekMoms deemed to be awesome enough to include in the gift guide? Keep reading!

Surface Book
Image: Microsoft

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book
Prices vary
Microsoft is proving that they are solid players in the hardware game by not only improving on the excellent Surface Pro 3 in their new Surface Pro 4 model, but they’ve also come out with a more laptop-y Surface Book, which also works well as tablet. Both models have the Surface Pen, which is the best stylus that I’ve ever used. If you’re looking for one device for all of your needs (except, possibly, intense computer gaming), one of these Surface models will be right for you.

Photo: Kelly Knox
Photo: Kelly Knox

Osmo
$99.99
Have you ever wished your kids would use the iPad camera for something other than selfies? Osmo might be just what you’re looking for. With educational apps designed with both style and substance, Osmo is an accessory for the iPad that will transform your kids’ usual screen time into a play experience that’s actually engaging.

Image: Amazon
Image: Amazon

Amazon Echo
$179.99
Amazon Echo is your on-ramp to the connected home. Use Amazon Echo to manage lights in your home, listen to music or books, manage shopping and to-do lists, get information on your favorite sports teams, or check out the latest news and weather. Helpful, new features are being added all the time!

Image: ThinkGeek
Image: ThinkGeek

Retro Duo Portable NES/SNES Game System
$99.99
Know anyone that is still hanging on to their “vintage” games? Now they can take them on the road and play without dragging their console around. Works with Super Nintendo, Nintendo, and with an extra adapter, Sega Genesis (extra adapter sold separately).

Image: Rory Bristol
Image: Rory Bristol

Enevu Cube Light
$25.84
Sometimes, responsible adults just want to experience adventure. Whether it’s Dungeons & Dragons, LARPing, or camping on the weekend, the Cube from Enevu is a great tool for the modern adventurer. The Cube is a rugged, compact, versatile tool up for any challenge. Thanks to its multiple LED bulbs, it has many light settings including: colored, color-changing, and three levels of white light. You can press the button to scroll through, or double-click it to reverse, meaning you don’t have to cycle through the brightest setting to turn it back off! This light finds uses for itself everywhere. While staying with friends, I use the lowest light setting when I need to navigate a dark house, saving me from the nightmare of finding light switches. When camping, the metal hook inside comes in handy to hang the light. It’s also a life-saver. No, really. It has an emergency mode, capable of emitting a strobe for over 48 hours. Its thick plastic case is also super durable, and very water-resistant, making a gift that lasts.

 

Nespresso Vertuo Line Coffee and Espresso Maker. Image: Nespresso
Nespresso Vertuo Line Coffee and Espresso Maker. Image: Nespresso

Nespresso Vertuo Coffee & Espresso Maker
$185-$350
We don’t know about you, but there’s a definite chicken-egg problem in our house when it comes to making coffee: some of us need to be caffeinated in order to make a decent cup. What to do? Get this machine. So easy even a zombie-GeekMom can use it. Excellent coffee. Espresso too.

Image: Patricia Vollmer
Image: Patricia Vollmer

JBL Charge 2+ Splashproof Bluetooth Speaker
$129.95-$149.95
The JBL Charge 2+ is a 6000mAh Li-ion battery/speaker that not only plays your tunes from any Bluetooth-capable device, but also will charge your smartphones, tablets, or any other devices that can connect via USB. The speaker being “splashproof” means you can take it to the beach, pool, or hot tub without worrying about the occasional spray of water on it. Please note that “splashproof” does not mean “waterproof”. A cool feature that our family enjoys around the hot tub is the “social feature” which allows up to three devices to take turns playing tunes through the speaker. These features help make the Charge 2+ the perfect gift for friends or family members who are planning a beach vacation next year!

Image: V-MODA
Image: V-MODA

V-MODA Crossfade M-100 Headphones
$234.99
The V-MODA Crossfade M-100 headphones are over-ear, noise-isolating headphones that are comfortable to wear for long periods of time. They help cut the sound of noisy things around you, and the people around you aren’t bothered by your sounds. Made with a steel frame, these headphones are strong and cool to the touch, and the over-ear cushions are velvety soft. The headphones also fold up quite compactly for travel, and come with their own hard-sided travel case with carabiner clip. The set also comes with two Kevlar-reinforced cords.

Lomo Instant Sanremo Camera. Image: ThinkGeek
Lomo Instant Sanremo Camera. Image: ThinkGeek

Lomo’Instant Sanremo Camera
$169.99
Lumo’Instant Sanremo Camera is for adventurous photographers with multiple filters and lenses to get that interesting shot.

Image: ChargeLight
Image: ChargeLight

ChargeLight Rechargable Flashlight and USB Charger
$49.95
The ChargeLight rechargeable flashlight is a more than just a flashlight! It provides 250 lumens of bright LED light and also serves as a battery back-up for recharging any USB device. Charge it at home and then carry it with as an emergency flashlight or phone charger. Small enough to fit in your purse or pocket. Cheaper than flashlights that burn through D cell batteries.

Kinsa Smart Thermometer. Image: Kinsa
Kinsa Smart Thermometer. Image: Kinsa

Kinsa Smart Thermometer
$19.99
The Kinsa Smart Thermometer is a great stocking stuffer for parents. It plugs into your iPhone and with the free app, you can track your family’s health. Dakster has used this on her son and it’s a great and fast little thermometer that you can toss in your backpack and go.

Star Wars Star Destroyer Bluetooth Speaker. Image: ThinkGeek
Star Wars Star Destroyer Bluetooth Speaker. Image: ThinkGeek

Star Wars Star Destroyer Bluetooth Speaker
$49.99
Blow the family away with the amazing sound from the Star Wars Destroyer Bluetooth Speaker. With the push of a button on the back engines, it plays the original Star Wars theme song and LOUD. Dakster Sullivan uses it to get her son out of bed when his alarm clock doesn’t quite do the trick.

Image: iHome
Image: iHome

Star Wars Millenium Falcon Alarm Clock
$49.99
With the clear base, this alarm clock looks like it’s floating in Hyperspace. Its features include an FM/AM radio, sound effects, the original Star Wars theme song built in, and light up thrusters!

Image: ETEKCITY
Image: ETEKCITY

Etekcity Scroll S200 Gaming Mouse
$16.99
We all use mice. Some of use them a <em>lot</em>. Between work, MMOs like Guild Wars 2, and local games like Minecraft, I put thousands of clicks on my mouse every day. Despite regular cleaning and maintenance, many mice have died in my home. But Etekcity’s Scroll S200 gaming mouse is a powerhouse of performance, and handles the task with aplomb. Six buttons and a symmetrical design, create a fluid functionality. Its software allows up to five profiles to be built in, and users can customize the colors of the lights, too. Oh, and did I mention? It has a button lifetime of 5 million clicks. It’s a gift that lasts.

Image: Microsoft
Image: Microsoft

Microsoft Band
Prices vary
The newest model of the Microsoft Band works seamlessly with your smart phone and all of your favorite fitness apps. Use it to organize your day; be notified of emails, texts, and appointments; keep track of your fitness; monitor your heart rate; and even keep track of your sleep patterns. There is even a UV sensor, barometer, and GPS. If you use it with a Windows phone, you can use Cortana. And the Microsoft Health app presents all of your fitness data in useful visuals and charts.

Boom Box Touch Speaker. Image: Firebox
Boom Box Touch Speaker. Image: Firebox

Boom Box Touch Speaker
$39.00
Dakster Sullivan loves her Boom Box Touch Speaker because there is no paring involved. Just turn it on, set your iPod or iPhone on top of it and let the music play. It’s a great little speaker for the price and works with or without your device in a case.

Get the GeekDad Books for the Holidays!

   

Jenny Bristol is an Editor at GeekDad and a founding Director at GeekMom. She is a lifelong geek who spends her time learning, writing, homeschooling her two wickedly smart kids, losing herself in history, and mastering the art of traveling on a shoestring.