Christmas is just around the corner and Newstalk’s Technology Correspondent Jess Kelly is back with her annual guide to the very best in gadget gifts.
If you’re on the hunt for a crafty Kris Kindle, seasonal stocking filler or that something special at the top of the wish list, Jess has options at every price point.
€50 or less
- Chipolo One Bluetooth Item Finder | €24.95
"This is a great gift for a friend, family member or colleague who always misplaces their keys or access card for the office," Jess said. "It pairs to both iOS and Android devices via an app. You can see where your items are or call them. It’s possible to replace the battery if it dies."
Available from tech retailers across the country.
- Apple AirTag | €35 (can be personalised on the Apple website)
"Similar in concept to the Chipolo mentioned above, this is the Apple version. These were massively popular during the summer - people wanted to keep tabs on their luggage," Jess said.
"If you have an Apple fan in your life, this is an excellent gift."
- Mophie Essentials Powerstation - 10000mAh | €39.95
"This is a 10,000mAh battery pack that I like an awful lot. You’ll get 2.3 charges of a standard smartphone out of it," Jess said.
"It has a USB-C port, as well as a USB-A connector port. It’s very light and portable and comes with a 2-year warranty."
Buy directly from Zagg online.
"Ideal for all ages, the tablet uses a customised LCD film with blue-green handwriting and a strikingly clear display, combining the experience of writing on traditional paper with that of a smooth LCD screen," Jess said.
"With this, you can provide the gift of the ideal family message board – using the functionality to leave reminders for your children, notes for loved ones and messages for colleagues."
Buy from Three stores nationwide and on Three.ie.
€150 or less
- Vodiac VR Headset | €70
"This is a great starter headset for anyone curious about the world of VR. It’s very easy to use - you just download the app, sit your phone in and away you go," Jess said.
"There are 70 games, documentaries and adventures pre-loaded in the app that provide hours of fun. The picture quality is great and it’s a fun way to spend some time.
"You control the content with your head movement."
"Off The Ball is the home of Ireland’s only sports breakfast show, as well as the daily shows here on Newstalk. You can join the obsession and become a member for just €99 - it’s usually €120, but the Black Friday offer is on at the moment," Jess said.
"This is the ideal gift for any sports fanatic who wants access to the biggest names in the world of sport, as well as top class analysis."
- Apple HomePod Mini | €109
"This is a staple of my home. It’s the smart-speaker from Apple. It’s only worth getting if you’re an Apple household," Jess said.
"It’s powered by Siri and she can answer your questions or play your music. It’s also great to use as an intercom.
"I can record a voice note from my iPhone and it’ll play out of the different HomePod Minis we have around the house, so everyone knows if and when I need something.
"The sound quality is amazing - and you’ll see that it’s fully meshed material all the way around, meaning the sound comes out full force."
- Samsung Galaxy Buds FE | €119
"These are excellent entry-level in-ear headphones by Samsung. There are small compromises here versus the Buds 2 Pro, but not enough to sway me away from recommending these to everyone and anyone," Jess said.
"They work with both iOS and Android devices."
- FitBit Charge 6 | €130
"We reviewed this device fully on the show in recent weeks, and I was blown away by the sophistication of this tracker, in the context of the price," Jess said.
"This is one of the more affordable wearables that has an ECG built in.
"As it's part of the Google group now, it has many of the Google features built-in like Maps and Pay."
€250 or less
"Almost everyone I know has asked about air fryers in the last few weeks in the run up to Black Friday and Cyber Monday. This one has come highly recommended to me from my brother - it’s a dual-zone air fryer by Ninja," Jess said.
"It has two baskets and a massive 9.5 litre capacity, so you can make enough for up to seven or eight people in one go.
"The Sync function makes sure both baskets finish cooking at the same time. The Match function copies the settings of the first basket to the second, so you can easily cook twice as much.
"Switch to the Roast setting to get perfectly crispy roast potatoes to go with your big meal.
"This air fryer can even bake."
- Urbanista Solar Panel Los Angeles headphones | €169 / €199
"These are on-ear headphones, with a twist. As the name gives away, they can be charged via solar," Jess said.
"They convert both indoor and outdoor light into power, which is quite cool.
"In terms of sound, they’re great. They have hybrid active noise cancelling and can also be charged via USB-C.
"They are available from Three.ie and are on sale at the moment."
- Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 Pro | €239 / €169
"These are the headphones I wear every day and love them. They’re the big sisters of the Buds I mentioned earlier and they are more sophisticated in terms of the tech," Jess said.
"They are usually €239 but are on sale at the moment for €169."
"The adjustable handlebar has three height settings, so it can be set up perfectly for your little ones and not-so-little ones," Jess said.
"It's loaded with a 256-colour ambient light underneath the foot base, so your kids can pick a colour to match their unique personality.
"A built-in Bluetooth speaker lets them blast their favourite tunes. Set the max speed (up to 10 mph) via the Segway Ninebot app to keep your kids safe. It also has a one-step folding mechanism.
"You get just over 10 miles of riding on a single charge."
- Apple Watch SE | €299
"This is the Apple Watch I wear and I love it," Jess said.
"If you’re looking for a watch that will act as a powerful smartwatch and give you useful fitness insights, this is the way to go."
Note: It only works with iPhones.
- Google Pixel Watch 2 | €379
"If you’re looking for an Android, premium rival to the Apple Watch, this is the way to go," Jess said.
"It’s the first Google Watch in some time and it pairs with any Android phone. The functionality is excellent."
Also available from Currys.
"This is a handheld console that runs the Windows operating system. If you’re an Xbox fan or GamePass holder, you can play all of those titles on the move – for free," Jess said.
"It’s the most powerful hand-held console on the market at the moment.
"It has a stunning 7” Full HD screen and the games look incredibly smooth on it, thanks to the variable refresh rate.
"There’s 512GB storage built-in but you can expand it with a MicroSD slot. It’s the Rolls Royce of handheld consoles.
"If you have a PC gamer in your life that you love very, very much, this is the way to go."
- Google Pixel 8 | €799
"This is one of my favourite phones of the year. It’s just so impressive on every front," Jess said
"The camera and battery are amazing and it’s a joy to use."