Tech Gift Guide

Whether you’re shopping for tech geeks or smartphone novices, there’s a perfect gizmo for everyone in Brian Ries' roundup of 17 hot gift ideas. And you may even find something shiny for yourself.

Paul Sakuma / AP Photo

Paul Sakuma / AP Photo

Apple iPad

What: Apple’s new iPad is simply the greatest tablet device on the market. It’s half-computer, half-eReader, half-entertainment center, and will change the way its owner consumes the news, plays games, or uses the Internet.
For: The dad who’s gadget-obsessed.

Jeff Chiu / AP Photo

Motorola Droid X

What: Motorola’s Droid X is a spectacular smartphone that’s been embraced by both geeks and non-geeks alike. Technically speaking, it holds its own against Apple’s iPhone, works great with Verizon, and looks like something sent from the dystopian future.
For: The mom who’s embraced the text message.

Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

Apple MacBook Air

What: Apple’s refreshed line of the MacBook Air is sleek, sexy, and thankfully, affordable—with two models hovering around the $1,000 mark. Pick this up for the college grad, the dad who travels, or the mom who’s been suffering away on an age-old PC.
For: The one who frequents the coffee shop.

Getty Images (3)

XBOX / Wii / PS3

What: Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo have all finally created fantastic gaming consoles that now fully double as entertainment centers. If you’re not yet an owner, now’s the year to get in on the fun.
For: The fun-loving head of the house.

Courtesy of Apple

Apple iPhone 4

What: Apple’s iPhone 4 is a sleek upgrade from its earlier incarnation, the 3GS. It’s fast, its graphics are astoundingly sharp, and it is considered the hottest smartphone on the market. It only works with AT&T, so keep that in mind, but know it’s likely headed for Verizon next year.
For: The one who worships Steve Jobs.

Yuriko Nakao / Reuters

XBOX Kinect

What: Arguably the most unique device on the tech market right now, Microsoft’s Kinect is an add-on to the XBox that uses a videocamera to capture your motions when standing in front of the TV for a slate of new games.
For: The fitness enthusiast who stays young at heart.

Rob Kim / Landov

Beats by Dr. Dre

What: Beats are flashy new headphones developed by hip-hop icon Dr. Dre, and are a good fit for anyone who wants to look fly while rocking out on the go. They were developed with sound quality in mind, so like most high-design headphones, these don’t lose audio quality for their flashiness.
For: The city-dwelling music fan.

Red Dead Redemption / Call of Duty: Black Ops

What: Available for both XBox and PS3, these two games are both favorites of The Daily Beast for their spectacular graphics and competitive game play. RDR pits the player in the heart of an Old Western landscape, while Black Ops is a shoot-em-up for the modern world.
For: The alpha dog videogame enthusiast.

Panasonic DMC-G2

What: The Panasonic DMC-G2 is a solid camera for anyone looking to step up from the standard old point-and-shoot.
For: The aspiring photographer with the aging digital camera.

Amazon Kindle (3G + WiFi)

What: Amazon’s Kindle remains the best e-reader on the market, despite a flurry of competitors. Grab the 3G/WiFi version to stay connected when you’re on the go.
For: The spouse who reads a book per week.

Parrot AR.Drone

What: Simply put, the Parrot is completely awesome. Not only is it a remote control quadricopter (a four-part helicopter of sorts), this little puppy can be controlled from your iPhone via its on-board WiFi system.
For: The kid who always has the most enviable toys.

SodaStream Pure Starter Kit, White

What: The SodaStream kit easily turns your tap water carbonated, bringing the old-timey appeal of the soda shop to your kitchen counter.
For: The old-time hobbyist who always orders the sparkling water.


Boxee Box

What: The Boxee Box is a hip little piece of hardware that sits next to your TV to stream movies, shows, and videos from the tiny frames of the Web to your living room’s big screen.
For: The college-aged Internet addict.

What: A service for storing files online and sharing with your closest contacts, lets you send large files with a link instead of a large email attachment and share music files from home to the office.
For: The Web-savvy siblings who grew up sharing music.

Transcend 500GB

What: Transcend is the portable hard drive brand that most geeks love, and it’s sold at half the cost of its closest competitors. These bad boys last too, so your photographs, music files, and important documents can be stored safely and securely while you’re parked at the cubicle or working from the couch.
For: The ones who take their work with them.

LaCie 32GB CooKey

What: This LaCie USB drive fits on your keychain and looks like a key. It’s fairly indestructible and is always there when you need it, making it a reliable way to keep your files close.
For: The one who always had their Swiss army knife.

AP Photo

Sanyo Eneloop Batteries

What: More of a stocking-stuffer than a feature gift (“Dad, you got me batteries?”), these AAs are said to be the longest-lasting in the kitchen utility drawer.
For: The one who’s always taking family pictures.