It’s the holiday season, which means it’s time to start buying gifts. But you’re not just buying for anyone — you’re looking for gifts for geeks! The tech world offers some tantalizing options.
As always, the cheapest and longest-lasting option is to
gift a top online subscription
. It might cost you more in the long-term, but you end up saving some cash during these tight months. But a subscription doesn’t have that wow factor. You won’t see the twinkle in their eyes as they unbox the cool gizmo you wrapped. Instead, here’s what you should gift your geek in 2016, depending on your budget.
Top 5 Online Subscriptions You Can Give As Gifts
Top 5 Online Subscriptions You Can Give As Gifts With the ever increasing digitization of society, online subscriptions have become a valid form of gift-giving and they're often more fulfilling than a physical gift of same worth.
Gifts for Geeks Under $20
A tiny system on a chip, the Raspberry Pi Zero is a favorite among hackers and geeks. We’ve already seen some
amazing Pi Zero projects
, and at $5, it’s a no-brainer.
10 of the Best Raspberry Pi Zero Projects So Far
10 of the Best Raspberry Pi Zero Projects So Far With a lack of full-size USB or Ethernet ports, Pi Zero projects are both attractive and challenging in equal measure. Here are ten great Raspberry Pi Zero projects to get you started.
Panlong PL-B02 Bluetooth Car Diagnostic Scanner Code Reader (OBD2 OBDII Check Engine Light for Android - Compatible with Torque Pro)
Panlong PL-B02 Bluetooth Car Diagnostic Scanner Code Reader (OBD2 OBDII Check Engine Light for Android - Compatible with Torque Pro) Read/clear error codes, display their meaning, turn off MIL, show current sensor data. Find out why check engine light is on before visiting a Mechanic - save money by fixing simple problems yourself
Buy Now At Amazon $12.99
Want to know what your car’s check engine light means? Maybe figure out your actual mileage? Most people don’t know that their car has an onboard computer, tracking all these important things. It’s called
the On Board Diagnostics 2 (OBD2) system
. All you need is a simple Bluetooth dongle that connects to the standardized port for all cars made after 1996. Buy this, your geek will love you for it.
What Is The OBD-II Port And What Is It Used For?
What Is The OBD-II Port And What Is It Used For? If you purchased a car after 1996, chances are it has an OBD-II (On-board diagnostics II) port. But what is it?
Joby GripTight PRO GorillaPod Stand for Smartphones (Black/Charcoal)
Joby GripTight PRO GorillaPod Stand for Smartphones (Black/Charcoal) Quick Release Plate
Buy Now At Amazon $57.81
Just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean you can’t get something awesome. The Joby GorillaPod is
the best smartphone tripod today
, and it costs just around $60. No geek can resist its charms.
What's the Best Phone Tripod?
What's the Best Phone Tripod? For most people, smartphone cameras have become good enough to replace proper cameras. From shooting videos to taking that perfect landscape photo, your handset does a terrific job.
Gifts for Geeks Under $30
At some point, everyone’s phone runs low on battery. If they have a TravelCard slim charger in their wallet, they’re going to think you are the best gift-giver in the world. This 1500 mAh battery backup is available for iPhones and microUSB Androids, but not for
USB Type-C phones
What Is USB Type-C?
What Is USB Type-C? Ah, the USB plug. It is as ubiquitous now as it is notorious for never being able to be plugged in right the first time.
Sandisk Extreme Go 64GB USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A USB Flash Drive - SDCZ800-064G-G46
Sandisk Extreme Go 64GB USB 3.0 (3.1 Gen 1) Type-A USB Flash Drive - SDCZ800-064G-G46 You can be confident in the good quality, performance and reliability of every SanDisk Product
Buy Now At Amazon $32.98
You can never have too many flash drives. And when you can gift one of
the fastest USB 3.0 flash drives on the planet
for less than $50, why would you even think twice? You might as well pick a few up, in case you need to give them as last-minute gifts.
5 Of The Fastest USB 3.0 Flash Drives You Should Buy
5 Of The Fastest USB 3.0 Flash Drives You Should Buy Which are the fastest USB 3.0 flash drives you can buy, without having to spend a small fortune? We've covered five of the fastest, ranging in price from $20 to $200.
TP-Link AC750 Dual Band WiFi Range Extender, Extends WiFi to Smart Home & Alexa Devices, Up to 150% More Throughput Than N300 (RE200 V2)
TP-Link AC750 Dual Band WiFi Range Extender, Extends WiFi to Smart Home & Alexa Devices, Up to 150% More Throughput Than N300 (RE200 V2) Ideal for extending WiFi to Echo/Alexa devices, WeMo & TP-Link Smart Plugs, TP-Link Smart Bulbs, the iPhone 7, Samsung Galaxy S7, iPad 4, PlayStation 4 and more
Buy Now At Amazon $29.99
Geeks love Wi-Fi just as much as they hate low Wi-Fi signals. Help out your nerd with this affordable Wi-Fi range extender, a device they’re probably not going to buy for themselves. If you can up your budget, we have other options for
the best Wi-Fi extenders of 2016
The Best Wi-Fi Extenders: Which One Is Right For You?
The Best Wi-Fi Extenders: Which One Is Right For You? What are the best Wi-Fi extenders out there? We've rounded up three of the best performing, cheapest, and best value wi-fi extenders for 2016. But which one is right for you?
Gifts for Geeks Under $40
It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
The Google Chromecast is awesome
, and in case your favorite geek hasn’t bought one yet, this is the ideal gift. If they already have the smart TV dongle, then get a Chromecast Audio, which turns boring old speakers into Bluetooth speakers. It’s the less common of the two devices, but just as useful.
Google Chromecast Review and Giveaway
Google Chromecast Review and Giveaway We're giving away a Google Chromecast, so read through our review, then join the competition to win!
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Motherboard
Raspberry Pi 3 Model B Motherboard 1.2GHz 64-bit quad-core ARMv8 CPU, 1 GB RAM
Buy Now At Amazon $34.00
This year saw the latest and greatest version of the geek-favorite mini computer. The Raspberry Pi 3 has
Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and is better than ever before
. The great part about the Raspberry Pi is that there are so many useful or
The Raspberry Pi 3: Faster, Better, with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
The Raspberry Pi 3: Faster, Better, with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Today, the Raspberry Pi foundation announced the release of the Raspberry Pi 3. It's the most significant update to the popular line of low-cost computers yet.
weird Pi projects
, that you can never have too many of them. So even if the recipient already has one, they’ll be glad to have another.
10 Weirdest Raspberry Pi Projects
10 Weirdest Raspberry Pi Projects There's a mad scientist within each of us, and the Raspberry Pi lets your inner loon come out and play. Sometimes, things get weird. Really weird.
Belkin WeMo Smart Switch is a must-have for any geek. It’s the first step in building a smart home, since it can digitize your regular old household lamps
. You can also connect other devices to it to manage all your powered gizmos. If you’re gifting this, make sure you point your loved one to our
3 Ways The Belkin WeMo Can "Smarten" Your Regular Household Lamps
3 Ways The Belkin WeMo Can "Smarten" Your Regular Household Lamps We took the time to look at the possibilities for turning your regular household lamps into smart lamps.
guide to installing a WeMo switch
Installing Your WeMo Switch: A Step-by-Step Guide
Installing Your WeMo Switch: A Step-by-Step Guide A smart plug or lightbulb are one thing -- you only need to plug those in and they work. But in the case of a smart light switch, you have to deal with electrical wiring.
Gifts for Geeks Under $50
Amazon Echo Dot is the best $50 gift you can give anyone. It’s a smaller version of the Amazon Echo.
This tiny little puck can plug into a set of standard speakers and become a smart voice-activated assistant in your home. Just by talking, you can order from Amazon, stream music, find out weather information, hear the news, or control other smart home products.
Amazon Echo vs. Dot vs. Tap: What Are the Key Differences?
Amazon Echo vs. Dot vs. Tap: What Are the Key Differences? One common complaint against Amazon Echo was that it had too many features and cost too much. Amazon's response to that? Releasing two variations with smaller price tags: the Tap and the Echo Dot.
Anker PowerCore 20000 is the best power bank you can have today. Why? Ther’s the large 20,000 mAh battery, which can charge an iPhone 7 or Galaxy S7 more than six times. But that’s not all. It supports Quick Charge 3.0 for faster charging times
What's a Quick Charger? Here's Why You Need One Now
What's a Quick Charger? Here's Why You Need One Now Smartphones take less time to charge up these days and it's all thanks to a new technology called Quick Charge. If you don't have it yet, you'll want it soon.
Gifts for Geeks Under $75
Probably the hottest geek item this year is the
Nintendo NES Classic, a miniaturized version of the famous video game console. Pre-loaded with 30 classic titles and featuring the same remote control geeks first fell in love with, this is a treasure. It’s selling out fast and you might need to hunt for it on non-Amazon sites. Sure, you can play classic NES games for free online
, but that’s just not the same thing.
4 Websites To Play NES Games For Free & Through The Browser
4 Websites To Play NES Games For Free & Through The Browser Just recently, I put out an article outlining some of my favorite RPGs for the SNES and showed MUO readers how they can experience those games through a web interface. Not everyone has the time...
Tile Mate Key Finder, Phone Finder, 4-pack (Packaging May Vary)
Tile Mate Key Finder, Phone Finder, 4-pack (Packaging May Vary) Packaging May Vary
Buy Now At Amazon $49.99
Tile is one of
the best gadgets to tag and find items
like keys, phones, bags, or remote controls. A 4-pack of the Tile Mate costs just $70, and works with any smartphone. Just attach it to something you lose often, and you can follow it from your phone or make it ring.
Find Your Keys! 6 Gadgets That Help Locate Your Missing Keys
Find Your Keys! 6 Gadgets That Help Locate Your Missing Keys Can't find your keys? Forgot to take them with you? If only your keys could call out to you and fix this everyday mess.
Jabra Move Wireless Stereo Headset - Red
Jabra Move Wireless Stereo Headset - Red Listen to your tunes and never miss a call
Buy Now At Amazon $94.99
Jabra’s Move Bluetooth headphones offer the perfect balance of good quality sound, long battery life, and decent price. They’re value for money, and your geek will love you for them. We have plenty of other
Bluetooth headphones recommendations for 2016
, but the Move would be our pick.
Best Bluetooth Headphones in 2016
Best Bluetooth Headphones in 2016 Android and Apple phones may dispense with their audio jacks. Bluetooth, on the other hand, may replace wires entirely. So you may want to invest in Bluetooth headphones. But which one?
Gifts for Geeks Under $100
Who would have thought the coolest $100 item this year would be a pair of sunglasses? But that’s what Snap Inc. (the company behind Snapchat) has done. Called Spectacles, these smart glasses can shoot videos when you tap them, and transmit the video directly to your smartphone.
The more you know about Spectacles
, the more you’ll want it for yourself instead of giving it away as a gift. You can’t get them online though, since Snap is selling them through “Snapbot” vending machines.
Snapchat Spectacles: Everything You Need to Know in a Snap
Snapchat Spectacles: Everything You Need to Know in a Snap Over the past few days, Snapchat has rebranded to Snap Inc. and it launched a new hardware product called Spectacles. The app still remains "Snapchat" though. Here's the full rundown.
Find a Snapbot with this map.
Roku Premiere+ - HD and 4K UHD Streaming Media Player with HDR
Roku Premiere+ - HD and 4K UHD Streaming Media Player with HDR Perfect for HD and 4K Ultra HD TVs, features fast quad-core processor and 802.11ac dual-band wireless.
Buy Now At Amazon $62.09
There is zero doubt in our minds that Roku is the best media streaming player right now. But Roku itself has several options, so
which Roku media streamer should you buy?
Of those, the $100 Roku Premier+ is a gorgeous gift. It has 4K video streaming support and Ultra HD, point-and-move remote control, and private listening through the remote’s headphone jack.
Which Roku Media Streamer Should You Buy?
Which Roku Media Streamer Should You Buy? The current offering is split into five products – the Roku Streaming Stick, and the Roku 1, 2, 3, and 4. This article looks at what each product can offer, and tries to ascertain which...
the best Bluetooth speakers
in terms of value for money, both the Urban Ears Roll 2 and the JBL Flip 3 are strong contenders. The
Best Bluetooth Speakers Under $25 and up to $300 in 2016
Best Bluetooth Speakers Under $25 and up to $300 in 2016 You can't beat the convenience of going wire-free. Great audio quality may always need wired speakers, but for music on your phone Bluetooth speakers are a must-have accessory nowadays.
UE Roll 2 is waterproof, so it’ll be great to hang in showers. Plus it looks cute, so we think it makes for a better gift. But the JBL Flip 4 is a better set of speakers overall. So if your geek is particular about their audio quality, the JBL is the way to go.
SJCAM Action Camera SJ4000 WiFi Wireless Chipset Novatek 96655 4x Digital Zoom Full HD 1080P Sport Waterproof 30m Extra 2 BatterieS
SJCAM Action Camera SJ4000 WiFi Wireless Chipset Novatek 96655 4x Digital Zoom Full HD 1080P Sport Waterproof 30m Extra 2 BatterieS ✔Chipset Novatek 96655,170 degree A+ grade HD wide angle. BACK-ILLUMINATED sensor with low-light sensitive night vision for shooting night scene perfectly, 170 degrees ultra wide angle lens for shooting broader vision. 4x Digital Zoom keeps you close to the action. High-definition digital motion video recording device
Buy Now At Amazon $88.00
It’s not a big brand like GoPro, but SJCAM’s SJ400 is one of
the best action cameras around
and has received good reviews from everyone who has tried it. It records video at Full HD resolution, comes with built-in Wi-Fi, and ships with two batteries, a waterproof case, a head mount, and a bicycle mount.
What's the Best Action Camera or GoPro?
What's the Best Action Camera or GoPro? Ever since GoPro launched, the action camera market has heated up. GoPro still rules, but Sony, Polaroid, JVC, Xiaomi, and many others have their own models now. So, what's the best action cam around?
Can you really get a full-fledged Windows PC for a Benjamin Franklin? Yup, the Kangaroo Mobile Desktop is
the best media center PC for less than $100
. It’s difficult to find one online these days, but be on the lookout for it.
What's the Best Media Center Mini PC for Under $100?
What's the Best Media Center Mini PC for Under $100? Media center PCs used to be impractical -- you needed to hook an expensive, full-size desktop to your TV. The mini-PC smashes down all barriers to entry, with small size and low-cost.
Gifts for Geeks Under $150
Kindle Paperwhite E-reader - Black, 6" High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi - Includes Special Offers
Kindle Paperwhite E-reader - Black, 6" High-Resolution Display (300 ppi) with Built-in Light, Wi-Fi - Includes Special Offers Now available in black or white
Buy Now At Amazon $119.99
Kindle Paperwhite is one of the best e-readers around
. While the
Kindle Paperwhite Review & Giveaway
Kindle Paperwhite Review & Giveaway The Kindle Paperwhite is Amazon's current flagship reader, and one that we've been wanting to review and give away for quite some time. If you already own a Kindle or a different eReader, you may...
Kindle Oasis and Voyage
are better, the Paperwhite does the basics just right, and then adds a simple light so you can read in the dark. It still doesn’t hurt your eyes, and features incredible battery life. What more can any geek ask for?
How to Choose the Right Kindle for You in 2016
How to Choose the Right Kindle for You in 2016 There are currently four different Kindle e-Readers available to buy, from the budget Basic model to the pricey Oasis. But which one is right for you? Let us help you decide...
Your favorite geek needs to take care of his body, so give him a nudge. FitBit always scores high among
fitness tracker wristbands
. The Charge 2 is packed to the brim with features like heart rate monitoring, smartphone notifications, all day movement and sleep monitors, and more.
7 Best Fitness Trackers
7 Best Fitness Trackers If you’re an active person, activity trackers provide incredibly valuable data for logging, improving, and understanding your fitness. But among the devices out there, finding the right activity tracker can be difficult.
Nothing says “Season’s Greetings” like a little robot toy shaped like a beloved movie character.
We reviewed the Sphero BB-8 droid
from Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and absolutely loved it. Imagine having your own little robot that you can control with your phone! If the geek in your life is a Star Wars fan, this one is a must-have.
Feline the Force: Sphero Star Wars BB-8 Review and Giveaway
Feline the Force: Sphero Star Wars BB-8 Review and Giveaway Is this droid you’ve been looking for all along?
What Would You Like Under $150?
Assuming that MakeUseOf readers are a little geeky at least, let’s start talking about what gift you would like this season. We’re keeping the cut-off at $150 for this round-up, so make sure your item costs less than that. And an Amazon link would be helpful!
Image Credits: Lolostock/Shutterstock