Technology gifts have grabbed the headlines, with fitness trackers, tablets and games consoles topping our wish lists. Wearable tech has attracted widespread media coverage, which probably means we should expect to see lots of people sporting fitness wearables in January. As well as new wearables and smartwatches, there are plenty of quirkier tech gifts out there. We conducted a quick straw poll in the Kensington office to see what everyone’s hoping to find under the tree. Here’s a quick overview of the results.
Best Fitness Tracker
Fitness Trackers seem to have come a long way in a short space of time, and quick scan of the specs suggests there’s not much that the new Fitbit Surge can’t do. The wide range of functions and higher price may put off all but the most enthusiastic fitness fanatics; but, if you’re lucky enough to find one in your stocking, expect to attract envious glances from the serious runners and cyclists in the office. The superb battery life, interoperability and multi-sport functionality make it one of the most powerful and versatile fitness wearables so far.
Microsoft said the Surface Pro 3 would be the ultimate laptop killer. While the new form factor may not kill off the laptop, it continues to transform the shape of the market and the device fleets of many organizations. There are improvements to the screen and Type Cover, as well as a more sensitive Surface Pen for crisper note-taking and graphic design.
Best Games Console
It’s not particularly original to describe a new console as a game-changer; but with the Xbox one the claim doesn’t sound too far-fetched. Microsoft say the this device will provide a model in the way it streamlines entertainment and gaming in a one-stop shop, allowing users to watch TV at the same time as gaming and using other apps like Skype. This impressive piece of kit is also shipped with a Kensington lock slot to keep it safe and secure.
The first Moto 360 smartwatch earned lots of plaudits. Its successor, the Moto 360 2, is set to build on this success, with users highlighting watch’s build quality and value. The second generation Android watch comes with sleeker bezels and greater levels of personalization using Moto Maker, Motorola’s customization tool. The Moto 360’s battery life compares well with many of its competitors, even if it may lack the Apple Watch’s office cred.
Best under $20
The Google Cardboard is a stocking filler for kids of all ages. Designed by Google as an ‘open source initiative’, it lets you experience fully immersive virtual reality in a fun and affordable way. All you need to do is download some of the specially designed apps on your smartphone and place it in a home- or ready-made Google Cardboard viewer. We love VR-Jurassic Land and, just for the holidays, Snow Shaker Maker.
Best DIY Computer Kit
The Raspberry Pi has been around a while. An affordable mini-computer that connects to a TV or display via a full HDMI port. The new Raspberry Pi 2 Model B also comes with 4 USB ports, Ethernet and a Micro SD slot. With coding in the classroom becoming more and more important, the Raspberry Pi is a great way to give your kids a head start and help them learn programing languages like Python and Scratch.