Top Tech Gifts 2017: Best Picks for the Kids on Your List

in TASTEMAKERS

By Evan Wade

Technology is a lot of fun to have, but it isn’t always fun to buy. That’s especially true during the holiday season, when the annual slew of top tech gifts comes roaring out of the floodgates. If you haven’t spent the last 11 months immersed in technology, picking the right item on your giftee’s holiday wish list becomes a considerable challenge. Here’s a look at some of this season’s best tech bets that your kids will love:

The Toys

If toys are high on your giftee’s holiday wish list, you’re in luck—there are tons of cool, high-tech options available today.

So far, this year’s biggest must-have seems to be the Anki Cozmo, an intelligent robot with a broad range of emotions and a personality that evolves as the owner plays with it. Closer to a pet than a product, the gizmo’s smart enough to play right back: Using its included light-up cubes, for instance, your recipient can play a color-matching game or a good old-fashioned round of keep-away with their new digital friend.

That isn’t to say robots are the only toys on the list of top tech gifts, however. Anki Overdrive and Hot Wheels A.I. Intelligent Race System are high-tech takes on toy racing, with incredible features like AI racers and modular, buildable tracks. Set up a track, select a car, and prepare to be amazed.

The Tablets

Chances are, there’s a tablet or two on your list of top tech gifts. Don’t waste your money on a dud—make your loved ones happy and go with an established best.

Here, your choice will likely match the operating system the person you’re buying for currently uses. If they’re an Apple fan, the iPad Pro line (shown here in a 64 GB Space Gray model) is a sure bet. The tablet boasts numerous features, including a retina display and a fingerprint-scanning Home key. Throw in support for your recipient’s existing library (apps, games, music, etc.) and you have the perfect addition to their digital stable.

Then, there are the Android devices. This year, Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3 tops the list. The S3 features a Super AMOLED display, amazing front and back cameras (5 MP and 13 MP, respectively), and a design that would make the most jaded techie fawn. Notably, the device also offers what Samsung calls Adaptive Fast Charging: In layman’s terms, it will fully charge a dead phone in three hours and last 12 hours on a single fill. If you’re buying for an Android user, this is the tablet to beat.

The Game Consoles

Bound to be a hit for years to come, new game consoles are among the best gifts to give this season. Microsoft and Nintendo are currently leading the pack, with each company releasing hardware in the last year:

Microsoft’s Xbox One X is a revamped take on the original Xbox One. It features a huge uptick in processing power and support for high-tech AV advancements, like 4K. Over 100 Xbox One games have been graphically remastered to take advantage of the console’s power—Super Lucky’s Tale is one release getting rave reviews—and more will see the same treatment soon. If your giftee has an existing Xbox One and access to a 4K TV, they’ll be thrilled to unwrap this high-tech overhaul.

Nintendo’s Switch, on the other hand, is an all-new console with an innovative take on portability. You can play it on the go with controllers (called Joy-Cons) attached to the side or plug it into the included dock for full TV gameplay. If you snag one, be sure to check out The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and Super Mario Odyssey, two console exclusives already being hailed as must-haves for any gamer’s library.

No matter which game, toy, or tablet you choose, any of these options will be sure to delight the tech-savvy kids in your life.

Introduce your giftee to their new digital pet with Anki Cozmo, available at Walmart.

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