With technology such a pervasive part of everyday life — who’s not a slave to their smartphone or fitness trackers these days? — there’ve never been more reasons to embrace the best in holiday season gadgetry. From tough-as-nails cameras to the latest in smart speakers, here are 10 of the best tech gifts to put under your tree this Christmas.
Apple AirPods Pro
Apple’s latest iteration of the ubiquitous AirPods address many of the issues of their oft-maligned predecessor. True active noise cancelling combines with a precisely attenuated fit, delivering the brand’s best sounding wireless earphones in some time. In addition to noise cancellation, these can be switched to ‘transparency mode’ — a useful function when you’re stuck in mid-morning traffic.
Buy now from Apple.
Devialet Phantom Reactor 600
Built with the same hermetically sealed woofers and atompunk enclosure as its predecessor, the new Phantom Reactor packs Devialet’s signature sound into a compact, mantlepiece-friendly package. No matter whether you’re listening to bass-heavy R&B or layered jazz instrumentals, active speaker technology ensures a listening experience that’s rich in detail and free of distortion. Pro tip: for even bigger stereo sound, it can be paired with a second unit.
Buy now from Devialet.
DJI Osmo Action
DJI leaned on its many years’ experience building integrated drone cameras to develop the Osmo Action — its waterproof, drop-resistant, freeze-friendly answer to the GoPro. Able to capture 12-megapixel stills (or 4K video running at a silky 60 fps) without so much as a shudder, the Osmo is a fantastic gift option for everyone ranging from photojournalists to professional thrill seekers. Comes with a variety of filters to enable shooting in underwater or high exposure environments.
Buy now from DJI.
Klipsch T5 true wireless earphones
Built with cutting edge technology, premium materials and a seamless design, Klipsch’s T5 ‘true wireless’ earphones are a no-brainer on any tech gift guide. Unlike various in-ear earphones fielded by competitors, the Klipsch T5 houses four ‘Clear Voice Chat’ microphones — ensuring crystal clear conversation even if you’re only wearing one bud. Compatible with a variety of digital assistants.
Buy now from Klipsch.
Native Union Jump+ wireless powerbank
Though wireless charging is a common sight in ‘smart’ living rooms everywhere, the technology hasn’t been widely fine-tuned for on-the-go applications. This Christmas, give the gift of mobility with Jump+. Native Union’s latest gizmo combines the battery capacity of a traditional power bank (12,000 mAh) with the convenience of a wireless tablet. Capable of charging up to three devices simultaneously.
Buy now from END Clothing.
Nokia 800 Tough
Of all the entries on this year’s list, the Nokia 800 Tough stands out as our most nostalgic tech gift. Affectionately dubbed bricks when they were first introduced in the 90s, the original Nokia cells were known to function even after being exposed to insane levels of heat, liquid and abrasion. The Tough builds on this reputation in a way which brings Nokia into the 21st century (albeit just barely). Though not exactly jam packed with features — the OS comes preloaded with WhatsApp? — the brand’s legendary build quality is realised here in glorious modern day detail, leading to a phone that’s resistant to all kinds of elements (even extreme cold) and certified with an IP68 drop rating.
Buy now from CityLink.
Philips PicoPix Max projector
You’d be forgiven for thinking that Indiegogo is the place where plucky little startups go to realise their dreams, but the crowdfunding platform has recently taken on a spate of big name projects. Philips’ latest is among the best of these: a smart, fully wireless HD projector capable of throwing displays of up to 120”. With built-in speakers, a palm-sized design, and Android support for over 4,000 apps (Netflix included), the PicoPix isn’t just a new way to experience home cinema — it’s the future.
Buy now from Indiegogo.
Sennheiser Momentum Wireless 3.0
For decades, Sennheiser has been a byword for superlative high-fidelity audio. Now they’re taking their smart tech game to the next level with releases like the Momentum 3. These wireless Bluetooth headphones deliver the same powerful, noise cancelling sound which Sennheiser fans have come to expect, now with a suite of functions intended to boost functionality. Intuitive proximity sensors ensure all audio is paused whenever you take these bad boys off. Not that you’ll want to: the signature leather headband and memory foam cups are a joy to wear.
Buy now from Lane Crawford.
From the makers of Beam comes the Sonos Move: a versatile, room-filling Bluetooth speaker that lets you bring the proverbial noise everywhere. Made with ‘TrueSound’ technology, Move raises the bar in almost every respect when it comes to consumer-grade speakers. The IP56 rating inoculates it against rain, snow, and various other meteorological phenomena, whereas integrated voice controls make playing music a truly hands-off experience.
Buy now from Sonos.
Leica SOFORT Red
We usually think of Leica as the brand behind premium offerings like the M9, but the brand’s recent foray into instant cameras — now available in Christmas-approved red — is a fantastic prospect for non-enthusiasts. Here, the convenience of Polaroid-style prints is married with Leica’s exacting build quality, churning out Instax-Mini prints from a 60mm f/12.7 lens. It does of course come loaded with a bunch of point-and-shoot presets, but since this is Leica that we’re talking about, users can also fine-tune the flash, focus and exposure to get an uncharacteristically professional Polaroid.
Buy now from Leica.