Gift ideas from for the hard-to-buy-for techie

  • Dec. 19, 2018 3:57 p.m.

Techies can be hard to buy for. They usually have everything they want. And even if they don’t, you have absolutely no idea what they might need.

I’m exactly that person —just ask my wife or my mom.

Here are a few gift ideas for the techies on your list. I’d be happy to get any of these as a gift this Christmas.

These might not be items you’d consider buying. The Vibes Earplugs are not very sexy, but protecting your hearing is very important.

—Vibes Hi-Fidelity Earplugs

What is it? If you attend concerts —especially loud ones —you’d be well advised to wear some hearing protection. Vibes are designed to reduce the sounds getting to your ears by 22 decibels. You’ll still hear the music, but your ears will thank you. Unlike foam earplugs that just muffle the sound, Vibes are reusable, and they’ll let you enjoy the concert without all the ringing in your ears afterwards.

Who is it for? Concertgoers and anyone who is exposed to loud sounds.

How much does it cost? $23.99.

Where can I get it? Discovervibes.com.

—Soundot AF1 headphones with FM radio

What is it? This is a set of headphones specifically designed for iPhones and iPads. The AF1 connects via Lightning port, and it includes an FM radio. Instead of streaming, you’re actually pulling FM radio from the airwaves. You’ll need to download the Soundot app to control the FM tuner and to adjust the equalizer. They also have a microphone for phone calls.

Who is it for? Perfect for listening to the play-by-play at the ballgame.

How much does it cost? $69.89.

Where can I get it? Blackcloud.com and Amazon.

—Solo Duane Hybrid bag

What is it? It’s a briefcase case for your laptop and accessories.

But wait … it also has hidden straps so you can sling it over your shoulders and wear it as a backpack (hence the “hybrid” in the name). This is a great-looking gray tweed case that can carry up to a 15.6-inch laptop plus all your other gear.

Who is it for? Everyone with a laptop. The convertible nature is really handy.

How much does it cost? $54.99.

Where can I get it? Solo-ny.com and Amazon.

—Roborock Xiaowa Lite C10 Robot Vacuum Cleaner

What is it? An inexpensive robot vacuum cleaner that can keep your floors clean without your having to do much at all. It has 10 sensors for navigating around your rooms. It moves easily from hard floors to carpet and adjusts the suction accordingly. The C10 can be scheduled from a smartphone app. It’ll clean for an hour before it needs a recharge on its base.

Who is it for? Everyone has floors. This will help keep them clean.

How much does it cost? $199.

Where can I get it? Amazon.

—Crate Club

What is it? A monthly subscription box of tactical gear that’s hand-picked by special ops veterans. The boxes contains cool gear like flashlights, multi-tools and survival gear. There are several levels of the subscription boxes. The more you spend, the more stuff is included each month. The costs also decrease if you prepay for six or 12 months.

Who is it for? This a unique subscription box service aimed at guys.

How much does it cost? Paid annually, the plans range from $23.99 to $104.17 per month.

Where can I get it? Crateclub.us.

—Ting Mobile SIM

What is it? A postpaid mobile service that operates on two nationwide networks (Sprint or T-Mobile), so it will work with most phones. You only pay for what you use each month, plus a $6 service fee for each line. You can use the Ting website to estimate your monthly costs. You can pool your family’s usage for more savings (plus the $6 monthly fee for each device).

Who is it for? Anyone looking to save money on their wireless bills.

How much does it cost? As an example, one line, using up to 500 voice minutes, sending/receiving up to 100 texts and using up to 500 GB of data will cost just $28 per month.

Where can I get it? Ting.com.

—Scottevest Hoodie

What is it? Hoodies are pretty geeky by themselves, but the folks at Scottevest have figured out a way to include 18 pockets, including one big enough to carry your iPad. There are also channels and access ports throughout so you can route your headphone wires inside the hoodie up to your ears. There’s even a coiled wire to keep your keys from falling out. I found to be very soft and warm, but the additional pockets make it a bit heavier than a normal hoodie. Available in six colors.

Who is it for? This is a great gift for a high school or college student.

How much does it cost? $95 in sizes M-XXXL.

Where can I get it? Scottevest.com.

—SOL Republic Amps Air 2.0 Wireless Earbuds

What is it? Very cool wireless earbuds with a charging case that will allow for up to 45 hours of playback (the case’s internal battery can charge the earbuds 15 times).

They are very small and pack a great sound. There is no wire tethering them, so you can move around very easily while listening to your tunes. They work great for phone calls, too.

Who is it for? They’re sweat- and rain-resistant, so they’re great for people who work out.

How much does it cost? $129.99.

Where can I get it? Solrepublic.com.

Jim Rossman

The Associated Press

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