Let’s face it, men can be tricky to buy for at times.
Some guys have everything they could ever want and other guys don’t really ever seem to want anything. If you’re still scratching your head about what to buy that special guy in your life, scratch no more. We’ve put together a list of the hottest gadget gifts for guys this Christmas that will put a smile on the dial of even the fussiest customer.
1. Virtual Reality Headsets
2016 has been the year of virtual reality with the technology hitting the mainstream in a big way. All of the biggest tech companies from Facebook (Occulus Rift), Samsung (Gear), HTC (Vive) and now Google, have their own versions of the technology.
As the technology continues to develop so do the range of features and the costs. The Occulus Rift by Facebook is the Rolls Royce of virtual reality with state-of-the-art design, its own motion-tracker and the requirement for some seriously beefy computer power to drive it.
The Samsung Gear VR on the other hand, also made by Occulus Rift, is a lite version of the Rift with a lite price tag to match. The only catch is that it needs a Samsung phone to power it.
Our pick though, is the new Google Daydream VR which works with the Google Pixel phone and will soon work with other phone models. It’s light, super-comfy and comes with a very handy controller. At just over $100 AUD it’s easy on the wallet too.
Audio technology is getting smarter, lighter and more convenient. Couple that with the fact that everyone loves listening to music, sport or podcasts while they work or travel and you’ve got a guaranteed winner of a gift.
Like most gadgets the range of headphones on the market is vast as is the range of prices.
What should you look for in a great set of headphones then? There’s a few features that are becoming a must like noise cancelling, wireless bluetooth functionality and stylish good looks. On this front Bose and Beats both do well.
Our pick of the headphone features though, which will impress even the biggest audiophile, is bone conduction technology. Bone conducting headphones actually vibrate sound through the bones in the skull instead of sending audio-waves into the ear. They are amazing for sportsmen, especially the likes of bike riders, who need to hear what is going on around them at all times. The folks at AfterShokz make some of the best bone conduction headphones going around with prices ranging between $100 and $300 AUD.
3. TV Streaming Boxes
TV watching has changed dramatically over the last few years with the arrival of catch-up TV and streaming services like Netflix. Add to that on-demand video rentals and music downloads and we have a wealth of entertaining content at our fingertips.
The easiest way to access all of this streaming goodness is through a streaming device like the Telstra TV or Apple TV. The Telstra TV, made by streaming experts Roku features all of the biggest streaming services going around along with BigPond Movies and catch-up TV. Apple TV also hosts Netflix, some catch-up TV and importantly iTunes where you can rent and download a world of movies, TV and music.
Drones have arrived in a big way. From aerial and remote surveying to movie making and photography, drones are becoming a standard gadget for some hobbies and jobs. Like most other gadgets though the features of each drone and the price tags vary wildly.
So what do you look for in a drone? The basics (in our mind) are a decent quality camera with stablising tech attached (to help you avoid video that you feel queasy watching) and four propellers aka a quadcopter. After these two things everything else is a bonus but there are some pretty cool bonus features doing the rounds including smartphone controls, led lights or even some Star Wars inspired shapes.
A simple, fun, knockabout drone will cost you a couple of hundred dollars with top-of-the-line drones stretching into the thousands.
5. Wireless Speakers
Speakers are getting smaller and more portable by the day. There’s now a huge range of wireless, AirPlay and bluetooth enabled speakers that are easy to shift from room to room, pack a punch and are even nice to look at.
The range of prices is huge but for our money you can’t go past Sonos, Bose or Bowers and Wilkins for quality. If you are looking for something at the more affordable end that still packs a punch we like the UE (Ultimate Ear) range of speakers.