Buying gifts, even for your close friends and family, is not easy. You might gift them a book they may never read. Or a gift voucher that they may never use. But if they’re an Android fan or an Android power user, you can drastically narrow down the options for some awesome holiday gifts they’re bound to love.
1. Google Home ($49 – $129)
Last Christmas was all about the Amazon Echo, and we have a feeling that this one will be all about Google Home. Or at least it can be for your friend who already uses Google Assistant on their Android phone.
Putting up a Google Assistant-enabled smart speaker in the living room or the kitchen can be super helpful. The full-size Google Home is a bit expensive, but you can gift them the new smaller and cheaper Google Home mini. It has the same features, just in a smaller package, with smaller speakers.
Google Home can do a lot. It will play music for you, answer all your questions, play trivia games, talk to your Chromecast, do a bit of home automation, and a lot more.
2. Chromecast Ultra or Chromecast Audio ($35 – $70)
Because Chromecasts are so cheap and so useful, it’s possible that your friends already own one. But what they might not have is the new Chromecast Ultra that supports 4K streaming, or the Chromecast Audio that works as an audio bridge.
The Chromecast Audio is great for turning old wired speakers into Chromecast-enabled wireless speakers. All they have to do is plug in the Chromecast Audio, and they’re ready to (rock and) roll.
3. Google Play Gift Card ($10 – $50)
These are a safe choice for that person who’s all in on the Google ecosystem. Using a Google Play Gift Card they can buy apps, movies, TV shows, and even books.
You can buy a Google Play Gift card in denominations of $10, $25 or $50. You can pick them up at a store like Walmart, Target or Best Buy. You can even order them online and just send your friends the redeem code in an email.
4. External Battery Packs ($18-38)
The battery is like oxygen for an Android power user. If you want to give them the gift of life, gift them an external battery pack so that their Android phone is never out of juice.
And you have a variety of choices here. All the way from battery packs the size of a credit card to 22,000mAh battery packs that can charge multiple devices at once. Take a look at the following options.
- Compact: Anker PowerCore 5000 (5,000mAh)
- Slim: Anker PowerCore II Slim 10000 (10,000mAh)
- High Capacity: Power Banks RAVPower 22000 (22,000mAh)
5. Fitbit Charge 2
If your friend or a family member has even hinted about trying to get in shape, or being healthier in general, just gift them a Fitbit Charge 2. It’s Fitbit’s best activity tracker. It’s comfortable to wear all day and it does great sleep tracking as well. Plus, there’s automatic workout tracking, challenges, and built-in goal tracking as well. Oh, and it has a 5-day battery life.
If you’re going to gift them a Fitbit, start with the Charge 2 (don’t go for the Flex). It’s a bit more expensive, but you get a screen that tells the time and a heart rate sensor (which makes health tracking more accurate).
Buy: Fitbit Charge 2
6. A Phone Case ($5-$25)
Here’s a universal truth: One can never own too many super cool phone cases. And because phones are so fragile now, you basically have to use a case. So might as well make it a cool one.
You can gift your friend a phone case that’s an inside joke that’s just between the two of you. Or you can choose a case that has a cool design, or that features their favorite fictional character.
If they’re a forgetful kind, give them a case that doubles as a wallet. You can give them a battery pack case as well. Just start searching on Amazon and you’re bound to come across something interesting.
This is a great option for your best friend or someone in your family that you’re close to. You can get an awesome case for less than $25.
7. Bluetooth Speaker ($30 – $100)
A little portable Bluetooth speaker livens up any gathering. These days, you can get a handheld Bluetooth speaker with pretty good audio quality for relatively cheap. Anker’s SoundCore speaker gives you 24 hours of playback time and a 66-foot Bluetooth range.
For richer sound, look at JBL’s Flip and Charge series. Logitech’s UE brand also makes some amazing sounding (and waterproof) portable Bluetooth speakers. UE Wonderboom is a cute little splash-proof Bluetooth speaker with 360-degree surround sound and 10 hours of battery life.
8. Bluetooth Headphones ($25-$90)
Creative Sound Blaster Jam headphones are lightweight and they have up to 12 hours of battery life. They’re cheap and give a surprisingly rich sound with an ergonomic fit.
When it comes to neck buds, the Plantronics BlackBeat Fit headphones are a great choice, though a bit more expensive.
9. Android TV Box ($90-179)
An Android TV box is a perfect fit for an Android power user who wants more than a Chromecast streaming dongle. Android TV boxes run fully featured Android with all the media and gaming apps you can think of: Netflix, Plex, Amazon Prime, Hulu, and so on.
Our recommendation for the best overall Android TV box is the mighty powerful Nvidia Shield TV. But Xiaomi’s Mi Box also ticks the right boxes — 4K streaming, a physical remote, Plex support, etc. — and it’s a bit cheaper.
10. Wireless Charger ($25-$60)
If your friend or a family member has a Samsung Galaxy phone (or any other glass-back phone that supports wireless charging), get them a wireless charging pad. Wireless charging pads are super convenient. You just put your phone on the pad and forget about it. They can put one on their nightstand and make sure that their phone will be fully charged when they wake up.
Our recommendation for the best overall wireless charging pad is Samsung’s Convertible Stand. For a cheaper alternative, you could try the RAVPower Quick Charge Stand’s 2 coil version.
Even if your friend already has a wireless charging pad, you can consider giving them another one, or of a different kind. Wireless charging pads also go well on the office desk, on the living room table, and even in the car! When you’re buying one, make sure it’s Qi-certified.
11. Get Them Started on a Smart Home ($35)
If your friend is an Android power user and they already have a Google Home or an Amazon Echo, you should get them started on a smart home setup. You can gift them a Philips Hue lightbulb kit that works with Google Assistant.
Even a Brand New Phone?
There’s nothing an Android fan will appreciate quite as much as a brand new Android phone. And these days, you don’t need to spend over $800 on a Pixel 2 to get the best phone out there. The OnePlus 5T gives you flagship specs, dual cameras, and a bezel-less setup for under $500. For under $300, the Moto G5s Plus is a great choice.
If someone in your family is on the lookout for a new phone (like your children or spouse), a fancy new Android phone could be just what they’re looking for.
What are you getting the Android-lovers in your life for the holidays? Let us know in the comments below!