The colorful iPhone 5c and iPhone 5s are obvious go-tos for tech-friendly gifts, but chances are the technorati on most people’ shopping lists either already grabbed these latest devices or will have moved onto a different smartphone by the time the gift-giving season arrives. Luckily, there are other geek chic gadgets and gizmos that go great with tinsel and bows.
Microsoft’s Xbox One will have games like “Assassin’s Creed” and “Call of Duty,” but there’s so much more to this console. Launching in North America on November 22, the latest edition of the Xbox family accommodates motion games using Kinect and focuses on non-gaming entertainment as well. The Blu-ray player is for when you're sick of the gaming world and would rather pop in a movie or binge-watch TV shows.
Price - $499.99
Related: Microsoft XBox One
Sony’s PS4 -- the Xbox One’s chief gaming rival of the holiday season -- hits stores November 15 and comes equipped with its own cloud-based gaming service for streaming, an app to turn smartphones and tablets into second screens, and the motion-sensing PlayStation Camera. Sony is also touting the PS4’s “social” function that allows gamers to use their real names when playing with friends or anonymous screen names when playing with larger communities.
Price - $399.99
Related: Sony Playstation 4
Turn your living room into a home theater with Panasonic’s plasma VT60. The touch-pad remote, voice control, and the built-in camera are just added perks for a giant screen (it comes in 55-, 60- and 65-inch sizes) that already boasts state-of-the-art picture and sound quality.
Price: From $1,600.00
Related: Panasonic VT60
Microsoft’s upgraded Surface tablet is cheaper than an iPad and comes equipped with the click-on typepad that first intrigued business-savvy tech enthusiasts looking for something light to take on the go to meetings, airplanes and seminars. This year’s version also comes with revamped front and back cameras, a USB port, up to 10 hours of battery life, and an improved high-def screen display.
Price - $449.00
Related: Microsoft Surface 2
For smartphone lovers who just can’t seem to run errands or hit the gym without checking emails or social media, there’s Sony’s latest Smartwatch. A little like Inspector Gadget's gadgetry, the water-resistant timepiece pairs with any Android phone to run Google Play apps and play music. It’s still a leash to modern technology, but it’s a smaller, more discrete one.
Related: Sony Smartwatch 2
For the gamer whose New Years resolutions include getting organized, there’s the Xi3 Piston Console. Launching on Black Friday, the compact, softball-size system is mostly marketed as a PC computer gaming console and works with the Windows and Linux operating systems, but its myriad ports also work for streaming music, television and movies.
Related: Xi3 Piston Console
Tesla’s speedsters get tons of praise for being both eco-friendly and easy on the eyes. But don’t forget about those technology packages. With a touch of the 17-inch, tablet-style screen, Model S drivers can make calls, and keep tabs on the car’s carbon footprint, get directions, surf the Web, and and play choice tunes.
Related: 2013 Tesla Model S
Not all music fans want to call attention to themselves as they jam. For a more stealth approach to rocking out, there’s Bose’s QuietComfort 20i earbuds. Listeners can choose how much they want to withdraw from the outside world -- with the right setting, you can even have a conversation without removing the buds.
Price - $299.95
Related: Bose QuietComfort 20i Headphones
Did the cell phone charger cable fall behind the couch again? Need a conversation piece to liven up the home office? Fuse Chicken’s twisted, metallic works of art called Bobines are both. The attention-getting stands double as USB ports that charge iPhones or Androids through computers and, perhaps most importantly, are easy to find.
Price - From $14.95
Related: Fuse Chicken Bobines
This coming year, resolve to end blurry pictures of food, cats and babies. The Fujifilm F900EXR compact ultra zoom mixes a swift autofocus with an enthusiast’s love of manual controls to capture subjects at various lights or speed. The camera is Wi-Fi enabled and can send pictures and videos to smartphones and tablets, so there’s no worry about social media feeds going out of date.
Price - $380.00
Related: Fujifilm F900EXR