Tech of the Pops
Dads are a notoriously tough bunch to buy for; if they haven’t already got the killer gift you’ve spent your hard earned cash on, then they’ll often have an…opinion on it that doesn’t leave you in any doubt about how they feel about it.
Fortunately there is a vast array of gadget gifts out there now, and your Dad can’t already have them all – and no matter how hard he tries, the thought of popping batteries in to just ‘see how it works’ will be enough to get him going.
We’ve gone to the furthest corners of the known internet in order to bring back some of the most tremendously tech-tastic presents your dad will love this Christmas. You might even get a grunt of appreciation.
Logitech Harmony Smart Home Control
Price: £60 / $133 (Around $AU125)
Whether they admit it or not, every Dad wants to have total control of the home. If you’re prepared to relinquish the reins to him, then the Logitech Harmony Smart Control should be high on your list.
This universal remote can replace almost any other controller – be it for the TV, stereo or, well, pretty much else. It can also can also connect to many other home and entertainment devices such as the Nest Learning Thermostat and Philips Hue LED bulbs, giving Dad a dangerous amount of power over many other pieces of tech around the house.
Nest Cam Wireless IP Camera
Price: £159 / $184.99 (Around AU$330)
Are you home? Is the dog alright? Have the bins been collected? Are the neighbours home? These and many more questions can be answered with help from the Nest Cam, a 1080p Wi-Fi camera that can stream super-sharp video to computers, phones or tablets.
It can send your Dad alerts if it senses motion or sound, and the 8x zoom and wide-angle 130 degree lens ensure that he’ll see the whole picture very clearly – just be careful to keep a careful eye on where he puts it so you don’t get caught doing anything nefarious. Or just learn his login details so you can turn the tables.
Zepp Golf 3D Swing Analyser
Price: £109 /$130 (Around AU$230)
Whether you love or loathe the game of golf, Dads seem statistically more likely to appreciate this precision game of stick swinging. So what better gift to buy him for Christmas than a gadget that’ll not only improve his swing, but allow him boast his best scores on social media, too?
A handy mount holds the Zepp in place on almost any design of glove, allowing Dad to track a variety of statistics related to his swing, which will also coach him and help improve his stroke with personalised tips and training exercises.
PowerLead Spow 10,000mAh Solar Battery Pack
Price: £13.89 (Around $20 / AU$30)
If your Dad can get something for nothing, it’s very likely he will. With the PowerLead Spow 10,000mAh Solar Battery Pack he’ll never begrudge charging his smartphones and other gadgets again – thanks to the free power of the sun.
The high capacity Lithium battery can charge a smartphone twice over, and give juice to other tech at the same time thanks to the dual USB ports. Whether on holiday, out and about or in the safety of the garden, this rubberised battery pack will keep your Dad’s tech juiced-up.
Studica Da Vinci 1.0 Junior 3D Printer
Price: £267.44 (around $400 / AU$560)
Does your Dad think of himself as the next great inventor? If he’s always got a big idea to share, then maybe he’d like a chance to make it himself with his very own 3D printer.
The Studica Da Vinci 1.0 is a great value entry level desktop 3D printer that can print almost anything he can design up to 14.75cm².
The Da Vinci guarantees ease of use, automatic calibration and fine print quality. Designs can either be loaded directly from a PC or MAC, or via the SD card slot, and it uses the cheap and widely available PLA filaments.
PowerUp 3.0 Smartphone Controlled Paper Aeroplane
Price: £35 / (around $50 / AU$75)
Though your Dad may never admit it, there’s a small part of him that won’t ever let his childhood fade into distant memory.
Fire up that youthful spirit of his with the Electric Paper Airplane Conversion Kit 3.0 from PowerUp, a little kit that turns any aerodynamic paper airplane design into a powered model that’ll fly for up to 10 minutes and 55 meters from the tablet or smartphone to which it is synced – considerably further than the gliding equivalent.
Included in the kit is a booklet that gives tips on how to make the perfect paper plane, as well as a spare propeller, too. But come on, if your Dad doesn’t know how to make one of these then your childhood belief in him will be shattered.
Price: £109.99 / $99.99 / AU$119.99
Help to kick-start the job of replacing your Dad’s bulging book collection by giving him the nudge into absorbing his literary needs in ebook form.
The Amazon Kindle Paperwhite is simply one of the best value ereaders money can buy: it has a clear, bright screen with built-in light and can download books via Wi-Fi or 3G, depending which model you choose.
There’s space for thousands of book on the Paperwhite, and access to over 3 million books on the Kindle store. There’s also a built-in look-up feature that integrates the Oxford English Dictionary, whilst text can also be easily translated from a number of languages if needed.
iRIStag Wireless Device Finder
Price: £15.95 (around £25 / AU$35)
How many times have you witnessed the fallout after lost keys, phones or other valuables? Well, if you choose to give your Dad an iRIStag Wireless Device Finder, he will never have trouble locating his phone, keys or anything else he can think to attach the iRIStag onto.
Another handy feature is the ‘Smart Park’ mode, that – with assistance from an app – helps you locate your car in even the busiest of shopping centre car parks.
As if that wasn’t enough, the iRIStag can also be used as a remote camera trigger – that’s loads of brilliant tech abilities on offer in one tiny gadget.
FishSpy Underwater Camera
Price: £249.95 (Around US$375 / AU$525)
Does your Dad regularly bore you with tails of nearly catching the biggest fish he’s ever laid his hands on? If he spends more time than most on the banks of the local lake or river waiting for that big bite, he might appreciate a helping hand from the FishSpy underwater camera.
Designed especially with fishermen in mind, this waterproof camera connects to your Dad’s smartphone or tablet via Wi-Fi, and transmits or records video for up to 4 hours onto the built-in memory.
This thing promises to ‘unlock the secrets of the water’ for all those fisherman out there – live streaming the ‘hottest fish action’, which actually sounds rather disturbing.
Price: £29.99 (around $45 / AU$60)
For shopping or to-do lists, paper is quickly becoming a thing of the past. Give your Dad a modern alternative in the form of an 8.5-inch Boogie Board.
The durable plastic tablet features a unique high-contrast LCD display that can be erased up to 50,000 times with just a touch of a button.
The included pressure-sensitive stylus makes writing feel very intuitive – whether it’s simply a note to leave on the fridge, or scribbling down tactics for the Sunday football, your Dad will love being part of the next generation of listing.