Great Gift Ideas For The 2011 Holiday Season

As a techie, I understand how hard it can be for spouses, friends, and family to find the perfect gift for that special technology guru in their lives.  So I’ve put together a list of the things we love and the things we want this year. It’s never to early to get started!

Apple TV

This little gadget is only $99 with free shipping.  Hook it up to your TV, and you can wirelessly log into your iTunes account and watch shows, movies, and more.  And now, iPad2 and iPhone 4S users can use AirPlay Mirroring to wirelessly stream videos on your iPad or iPhone directly to the big screen, even if you rotate your phone or zoom in and out.  Apple TV makes it easy to stream Netflix or watch videos on Vimeo or YouTube as well.

Price: $99

WD TV

A competitor of Apple TV, WD TV is nice if you have a lot of digital movie files in a variety of formats, while also getting Netflix and a bunch of other cool digital media tools in one little box that you hook to your TV / entertainment system.  If you have the room, I also recommend a projector to enhance the viewing experience. Your tech friend will love creating their own in-home theater!

Price: Depending on the system you choose, this gift will run anywhere from $89.99 – $129.99

Mac Mini

Speaking of cool entertainment toys, if you have a nice TV or projector with HDMI, I also recommend hooking up a Mac Mini with a wireless keyboard and trackpad to your TV. My family and I have made great use of ours. When you use the computer as much as we do, there are times when you just wish you could put a particular streaming video, website, or something else on your TV. With an iPad 2 and Apple TV, you don’t need the computer as much as you used to to stream great content to your TV (or play Angry Birds on a big screen).

Price: From $599

Fun Flash Drive

These little portable drives make great stocking stuffers. Amazon.com has a huge assortment of cool flash drives, including animals and Star Wars characters.  We love R2D2!

Price: $19.99

AR.Drone Parrot

Though it’s a year old now, I still think this quadro-copter is super cool!  Your loved one will love flying it indoors and out, all controlled with their iPhone, iPod, or Android phone.  Two onboard cameras stream to your phone as well, giving you views in front of and below the Parrot! Available on Amazon.com.

Price: $299.95

Solio Bolt Solar Charger

Help stave off the dead battery blues with a solar charger.  The Solio Bolt Charger uses solar power to charge batteries in all types of USB-connecting devices like phones, iPods, cameras, and more.

Price: $65

Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet

Techies love the latest and greatest in technology gadgets.  Surprise them with the new Kindle Fire coming to Amazon on November 15th (available now for pre-order). The tablet offers a full color, 7” multi-touch screen and comes WiFi ready.

Price: $199

GoPro Camera

This camera is so small and versatile, you can do almost anything with it. Our lead developer loves his, using it to film surf sessions, wake boarding, skateboarding, and even scuba diving. It’s easy to use and customize with different lenses and accessories and a plethora of nifty mounting possibilities (including helmet mounts, surfboard mounts, wrist mounts, poles, chest mounts, and more). Video can be uploaded to a computer and easily manipulated to create time lapses, stills, and more. Your technology-savvy friend will have a great time finding uses for this handy little camera. And the accessories make great stocking stuffers!

Price: $149.99 – $299.99

 Gift Cards

If you’re still not sure what gift will please, grab a gift card and let them choose their perfect gift.  Amazon.com is a great, versatile card that allows them to buy almost anything.  An iTunes gift card gives them the option of purchasing movies, music, games or even digital magazines.  Or consider Panera or Starbucks.  These places offer free WiFi, and your friend or family member can enjoy a nice coffee or snack while working remotely.

Price:  Any

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