Everyone loves a gadget these days, yes even my grandma and my mom likes gadgets, even though they may not be able to use them properly! If you're like me, then you will probably need some ideas of presents to buy your family in the run up to Christmas. There's something here for every member of your family - even your dog ! There are 12 ideas here, so let's get started!
For little ones
If you want something that is engaging, fun AND educational, then the LeapFrog LeapStart certainly ticks the boxes. If your child gets bored easily like mine does, then this is the perfect gift. It's high-tech, skill-based learning system where kids can solve fun puzzles and play interactive games.
Basically you have a battery powered LeapStart folder whereby you can insert various activity books. Kids interact with the books with an easy to use stylus to solve puzzles whilst falling in love with the many cute characters. There are over 30 different challenges and games in each book too to stop them getting bored!
There are two versions of LeapStart, one for kids 2-4 ($29.99) and one for ages 5-7 ($29.99). Extra activity book costs $9.99.
Skylanders games are awesome and this time, they're even better, because in the new game ($59.99), kids can actually create characters of their own! Another really cool feature of the game, is that the characters that they create, are stored on a special "Creation Crystal" which enables them to take their characters around to their friends houses and play in their games too! This is a fantastic game and really brings out your child's creativity. Suitable for ages 10 and up.
This is one of the cutest robots I've ever seen, and if I think so, then your kids definitely will! Cozmo is little smaller than a baseball, but has more personality in it than all the other toys you've seen put together.
Its incredibly clever too, as it can recognize faces, run around on your tabletop and even play games with all the family. Your kids can use his "Power Cubes" to construct puzzles and challenges for him and it can even say your child's name, which they will absolutely LOVE. They'll love this robot so much that it will become their new comfort toy! Suitable for ages 8 and up.
Back in the day you used to have a desktop computer. Further down the line that was replaced with a laptop and now laptops have been replaced by tablets. But what if you want a laptop and a tablet in one? Well the Lenovo Yoga Book has you covered.
This thing does everything. You can use it as a canvas for creating digital art, use it to browse the web or even use it as an all-in-one media center. Your kids can use it to jot down notes for school with the stylus or play games and use apps on the crisp 10-inch HD display. Its good on battery too. You may even "borrow" it yourself, if your teenagers can leave go of it for a second!
This gadget is perfect if your teenager wants a phone And a VR headset for Christmas. But don't worry, this one won't break the bank. It works by connecting to a Galaxy phone, either the Samsung or newer, and uses the phone as a display.
It's very easy to use too, just snap your phone in place on the headset and enjoy the awesome virtual reality. And once you've finished of course, your phone carries on where you left off, using snap chat or browsing the Internet.
The best thing about this is you can have almost the same experience as an Oculus Rift or similar but for a fraction of the price.
For Moms and Dads
When someone mentions a thermostat, you don't necessary think its a cool gadget to have, but this one is cool believe it or not. Its an Internet of Things device that enables you to set temperatues, schedule the heating for turning on and off and you can completely customise how it heats or cools your home all from your smartphone. It even learns your routine, so if you do forget to switch the heating off, it will do it all for you automatically. Its affordable to at $149.99. Awesome.
This doesn't really need any introduction but essentially it enables you to add artificial intelligence (AI) to your front room. It's basically a smaller version of the Amazon Echo but packs the same amount of power and functionality. Search the web, get it to play a song and even order Domino's pizza just by talking to Alexa.
Turn your car into cockpit with this futuristic head-up-display that mounts on your dashboard. It plugs into your car's OBD port and syncs up with your smartphone and projects messages, maps and apps so that they appear to float above the road when you're driving. It's quite expensive at $799 but definitely worth it from a safety point of view alone as you would never need to look down again to read a text message or glance at your SatNav.
This camera is a must if you want to take your photography to the next level, beyond what your smartphone offers. Its compact and lightweight and has a cool feature called "Guide Mode" which will basically help you capture the perfect picture. You can also share your pictures instantly using Nikon SnapBridge. They're not too expensive either at $499.95.
This is an awesome gadget. It's a portable printer for your smartphone! No more emailing large files, just print the photos out there and then from your smartphone. It connects via Bluetooth so there's no cables and small enough to fit into your pocket. I must have one of these :)
For those with fur!
Yep, your furry friends can get involved too. Your dog will love this one. Furbo shoots out a tasty snack for your dog, even if you're not at home. Just swipe the touchscreen on your smartphone and it will shoot out a treat. You can keep an eye on your pooch too as it comes with an embedded dog camera!