When it comes to finding cool gadgets for the older folks on your list, you may as well be discussing the finer points of rocket science. Just like your non-techie grandfather, your dad may love his e-reader but refuse to upgrade to a tablet (even though he’d still be able to read all his books as well as surf the web and listen to music).
However, finding thoughtful tech gifts for Dad, your uncle, and others doesn’t have to be the bane of your holiday shopping experience. Whether it’s for their home, entertainment, or the outdoors, there are plenty of tech products well-suited for dads and other baby boomers:
Home Tech Toys
Finding the right gifts for Dad is usually difficult for many reasons. Either it’s too complicated to explain and set up, or the usefulness is not readily apparent to him. Starting with the home, there are a lot of cool gadgets that are a perfect balance between your dad’s needs and your attempts to bring him into the current century.
The biggest trend happening right now is the “Internet of Things,” basically any product that has some sort of Internet connectivity. Some of them can seem gimmicky, but there are many products to improve your home and save money on your energy or heating bills.
Smart thermostats—like the Customizable Color Touchscreen model from Honeywell—and an upgrade to LED light bulbs are great gifts for Dad since they update familiar items that are already integrated into his life. The only learning curve would involve navigating related apps to help monitor the connected device, so look around to find products that have simple and intuitive user interfaces.
Again, a 3D printer is super neat, but will your dad really use it—or buy the necessary components to keep printing until next year? If so, great! If not, think about your father’s entertainment needs.
If his home theater needs an overhaul in the sound department, check out a few sound bars, like the Yamaha YAS-106. These speakers can drastically improve his audio experience with very minimal setup. Digital recorders and streaming devices, which can make watching his favorite shows easier, are also worth your consideration.
Cool Gadgets for the Active Dad
There’s more to outdoor tech than just wearables and fitness trackers. If your dad happens to be a running (or cycling) enthusiast and does not have these products, find a smartwatch or bike mount that will help him get the most out of his favorite activity.
We’re a connected world, so think about gifting the IP65 Rugged Power Bank 10050mAh Lithium-ion Cell to enable your dad to charge his electronics while on the move. These are great for long hikes or camping trips that go off-grid. Waterproof speakers are also ideal for the dad who enjoys fishing or spending his time on a boat.
Take the time to put on your “dad shoes” and really think about what he would want and actually use every day. With that in mind, finding the perfect tech gift will soon be a holiday tradition that brings joy—and not grief.