19 Top Tech Gifts – The iMums Holiday Gift Guide 2017

19 Top Tech Gifts - The iMums Holiday Gift Guide 2017

Stanley Stand by Distil Union

The Stanley Stand by Distil Union is a leather device that bends to hold your device and accessories while cooking, serving as a portable charging station, holding your tablet and more.  Stanley Stand is made of leather, merino wool felt and heavy steel.  

Kwilt Shoebox

Kwilt Shoebox is a novel solution for storing and accessing your mobile photos.

iFrogz Impulse Duo - Dual Driver Bluetooth Earbuds

The iFrogz Impulse Duo are wireless Bluetooth earbuds with dual drivers. Each earbud has two 6mm neodymium drivers.

EYEQUE Personal Vision Tracker

The Personal Vision Tracker from EYEQUE is a device that works with a smartphone to check and track your vision in between trips to the eye doctor.

Stud Satchel

Stud Satchel is a great ‘man bag’ perfect for carrying a tablet, camera, book, wallet and all his other everyday essentials.

SnapPower Safe Light

SnapPower Safe Light is an easy to install wall replacement switch that not only childproofs but adds lights so you don’t need to take up one of the outlets with a nightlight.

Buff Quick Cloth by Microfiber Wholesale

Buff™ Quick Cloth by Microfiber Wholesale is a ultra fine microfiber cloth that will  not only remove smudges, dirt, dust and debris – it will  also clean and polish your device. 

iXpand Base from SanDisk

Xpand Base from SanDisk is the perfect gift for fast easy foolproof back up of the photos, videos and contacts from an iPhone or iPad

iFrogz Impulse Wireless Headphones

iFrogz Impulse Wireless headphones have a well padded headband and AeroFoam padding earpads for comfort and passive noise resistance.

Blink Wireless Home Security

Blink Wireless Home security from Blink is a wireless home security camera that sends alerts to your smartphone or tablet via motion-activation or HD video. 

PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame

PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame brings photo frames into the 21st Century.  It is a touchscreen device that acts as both a photo frame and smart digital photo album.

myCharge Portable Power Outlet

Portable Power Outlet from myCharge is a portable power bank in class of it’s own. It has both a charging hub and an inverter so it can provide both AC and DC power.

Smarter iKettle Wi-Fi Connected Electric Kettle

iKettle from Smarter is the intelligent way to heat water, whether it is for brewing the perfect cup of tea or heating a baby’s bottle.  

invisaWear jewelry for personal security

Invisawear is a wearable jewelry that includes an integrated battery that allows you to press a button which utilizes your smartphone to contact emergency services in an instant. 

MyCloud Home

My Cloud Home from Western Digital provides a secure place in your own home to store and access all your digital files so you no longer need to use 3rd party cloud services.

Touchjet Wave

Touchjet Wave turns a flat screen TV or monitor into a giant tablet. It can be used with any monitor or flat screen TV from 20-65″.

Arlo Pro 2 Wirefree Security Camera System

Arlo Pro 2 cameras can record in 1080p HD- giving high quality images, the cameras have a wide viewing angle – 130° and night vision is automatically triggered in low light conditions.

PicoBrew Pico Model C Beer Home Brewing Machine

Pico Model C from PicoBrew is the perfect gift for the Craft Beer affectionado.

Apple Watch

The brand new Apple Watch 3.0 is a perfect companion to your smartphone. You can listen to music, use apps, view and respond to text messages and make phone calls all from your wrist.  

The Holidays are almost here, with Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales looming, Christmas shopping season will soon be in full swing. The iMums have been publishing gift guides with our favorite gift ideas since 2011, and are we are proud to present our 2017 18 Top Tech Gifts. Amongst this year’s picks we have included new tech that can turn your TV into a giant touchscreen tablet, a smart Kettle that can help you brew the perfect cup of tea, the latest in wireless home security systems, a power pack that can power a TV, some great solutions for backing up and organizing your digital media and many more. Many of these items will be on special sales for Black Friday or Cyber Monday so make sure you don’t miss out! Happy Holidays. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Shopping! When shopping for kids please also check out our latest Kids Gift Guide and other gift guides.

Gifts Under $50

Stanley Stand by Distil Union

Stanley StandThe Stanley Stand by Distil Union is a leather device that bends to hold your device and accessories while cooking, serving as a portable charging station, holding your tablet and more.  Stanley Stand is made of leather, merino wool felt and heavy steel.  The Stanley Stand is covered on the outside by leather in your choice of color (black, brown, gray, lime, aqua, red) and on the inside is Merino wool felt.  They cover up a piece of steel inside which bends to make the Stanley stand usable in so many situations.  Each stand has light grey Merino wool felt which has white stitching, and the darker stand (black) has darker grey felt with black stitching.  The stand features a small hole in the back designed to feed your cables through so they are not in the way of your device.  Read our full review. 

Available from Distil Union Amazon and other retailers for $49.99

Kwilt Shoebox

Kwilt Shoebox is a novel solution for storing and accessing your mobile photos. It is a small device that acts as a bridge between your smartphone and whatever storage device you attach to it. To use the Kwilt Shoebox you download the Kwilt app on to your phone, plug in the Kwilt Shoebox and connect it to your home WiFi. It has no storage of its own but acts as a bridge to whatever storage you attach to it- whether that is a 16GB USB stick or a 2TB hard drive. Any photos, videos or files that are on the attached storage device can be accessed and viewed from the Kwilt app on your phone, without using any of your smartphone’s storage.  Within the app you can view photos by location, date or album. You can access Kwilt where ever you are, as long as you have an internet connection. If you find your Smartphone storage is full you can download all your photos and videos via Kwilt at the tap of a button. Your photo and video storage is in the safety of your own home and there are no subscription fees to pay. If you run out of storage you can just add another hard drive (multiple storage devices can be accessed at once if you use a USB hub.

Available from kwiltshoebox.com for US$49.99

 

 

 

 

 

iFrogz Impulse Duo – Dual Driver Bluetooth Earbuds

The iFrogz Impulse Duo are wireless Bluetooth earbuds with dual drivers. Each earbud has two 6mm neodymium drivers. This gives a larger dynamic range and richer sound quality than single drivers. The wireless controller is nicely designed acting as controller, shirt clip and cable management system. The controller has 3 clearly demarcated zones that each have dual function. A press is used for volume up, play/ pause and volume down; whilst a long press is used to switch the earbuds on/off and go forward or back a track. The controller has a soft flexible magnetic clip that can both be used to clip the controller to clothing and to organize the earbud cable when not in use. The Impulse Duo Earbuds come with 3 sets of soft earbud tips so you can get the best fit. They are rated IPX-2 (sweat-resistant) to keep them working through your workout. With Apple discontinuing the earphone jack from iPhone 7 onward, these Bluetooth headphones are a great alternative to Apple’s Lightning EarPods or wireless AirPods. 

Available from Zagg.com or Amazon for US$44.99

 

 

 

 

 

EYEQUE Personal Vision Tracker

The Personal Vision Tracker from EYEQUE is a device that works with a smartphone to check and track your vision in between trips to the eye doctor. It consists of a miniscope, a safety strap and an iPhone or Android app. To use the Personal Vision Tracker: download the app, create an account and connect the scope to a smartphone using the included strap. The user then takes 3 full eye tests, these consist of of overlapping a red and green line perfectly to make a yellow line at 9 measurements of each eye. The EyeQue cloud technology processes the results providing EyeGlass Numbers. EyeGlass Numbers are spherical, cylindrical, axis, and astigmatism information  which is the same information in your eyeglass prescription. The Personal Vision Tracker is a quick and easy way to check your vision in between your annual vision tests with an eye doctor – so you can see if there are any vision changes occurring and to provide you with up to date vision information for ordering eye glasses online. The Personal Vision Tracker does require an annual subscription ($4.99) for each user, fIrst year is included free for the first user. Available from EYEQUE.com for US$29.99 

 

 

 

 

 

Stud Satchel

It can be hard to find an men’s shoulder bag that is suitable for carrying all his tech, a comfortable size to carry and masculine enough that it doesn’t look like a ladies purse. The Stud Satchel is a great ‘man bag’ perfect for carrying a tablet, camera, book, wallet and all his other everyday essentials. Crafted from waxed canvas and leather the stud satchel is equally at home in the office or on the go. It is available in olive or navy and can be personalized with up to 8 letters at no additional charge. At 15” L. x 4” W. x 13.25” H it is big enough to fit a laptop, but small enough to be carried as an everyday bag. It comes with both a handle and an adjustable shoulder carrying strap. There are enough compartments to keep all his tech organized with two snap closure front pockets, a zippered back pocket, two open inside pockets, one zippered inside pocket,  and a magnetic snap closure flap.

Available from GroovyGroomsMenGifts.com for US$49.99 

SnapPower Safe Light

SnapPower Safe Light by SnapPower is an easy to install wall replacement switch that not only childproofs but adds lights so you don’t need to take up one of the outlets with a nightlight.  As a mom of a toddler, I increasingly found myself telling my son “no” when it came to power outlets.  I remember childproofing with my first involved cumbersome outlet covers or the little white outlet covers you would remove just so you could vacuum and then stick back in.  I knew that there had to be a better solution.  At our house, in addition to needing to childproof, many of our outlets had nightlights plugged into at least one of the outlets.  We have some pretty dark corners, especially at the bottom of the stairs.  Other products in the lineup include switch plate covers for light switches  Read the full review.

Available from Amazon or SnapPower RRP $17.00 USD for a single or 10 for $140 USD

Buff Quick Cloth by Microfiber Wholesale

Buff™ Quick Cloth by Microfiber Wholesale is a ultra fine microfiber cloth that will  not only remove smudges, dirt, dust and debris – it was also clean and polish your device.  This double sided cloth also cleans and polishes glasses, tablets, and lenses.  Included in each package are two 5″ by 7″ cloths which are stored inside a handy case.  There are four different designs and can be washed when they get dirty.

Available from Amazon or Microfiber Wholesale RRP $5.98 USD.

 

Gifts $50- $100

iXpand Base from SanDisk

The iXpand Base from SanDisk is the perfect gift for fast easy foolproof back up of the photos, videos and contacts from an iPhone or iPad. It is a charging station and backup solution in one. Set up takes just a few minutes and after the first time whenever you plug your phone in to the iXpand Base it will start charging and simultaneously scan your phone. It will then automatically back up any new items it finds. The iXpand Base can be used to back up multiple iPhones/ iPads and you can then choose which back up to restore from- making it easy to transfer contacts, photos and videos to a new iPhone. It has a removable SD card which you can then use to transfer your photos and videos to a computer.The iXpand Base is available in 64GB, 128 GB or 256 GB.

Read our full review.

Available from AmazonSanDisk.com or other retailers from US$69.99

 

 

 

 

 

iFrogz Impulse Wireless Headphones

The Impulse Wireless Headphones from iFrogz are an over the ear Bluetooth headphone that won’t break the bank. The Impulse Wireless headphones have a well padded headband and AeroFoam padding earpads for comfort and passive noise resistance. The headphones fold up for travel, have on-ear controls and a built-in microphone on the earpiece. They boast an impressive 12 hour battery life and recharge via the included micro-USB charging cable. When you do run out of charge unexpectedly you can plug in the included cord to convert them to wired headphones (this is great as an emergency back up but I wouldn’t recommend for regular use as it it very thin and lightweight.) The headphones have 40 mm drivers and deliver good sound quality for the price. Overall, the iFrogz Impulse Wireless Headphones are a great value for over the ear Bluetooth headphones that offer good sound quality, comfortable padding and portability at an affordable price. Available in black with red accents or white with tan accents.

 Available from Zagg.com or Amazon for US$59.99

 

 

 

 

Blink Wireless Indoor Security

Blink Wireless Home security from Blink is a wireless home security camera that sends alerts to your smartphone or tablet via motion-activation or HD video.  The product utilizes a hub and cameras powered by lithium batteries to secure your home.  The batteries can last up to two years.  When utilizing Blink to check on your home, a LED light comes on to indicate the camera is recording.  An alert is sent after motion is detected to your smartphone and you can play back the video.  You are able to arm the motion alerts via your phone.  Blink also offers an XT camera which can be used outside.  It is quick and easy to set up.  After setting up the cameras, you take a photo using Blink of the room it will be placed in – you then can access the camera using your smartphone or tablet to view the room at any time.  Blink integrates with Amazon Alexa as part of your smarthome and can be operated using voice commands.

Available from Blink for US$99.  You can save 15% and get free shipping by using code. EARLYTHX 

 

 

 

 

Gifts $100- $200

 

PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame

PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame brings photo frames into the 21st Century.  It is a touchscreen device that acts as both a photo frame and smart digital photo album. You can link each PhotoSpring Smart Digital Photo Frame to one or more SmartPhones, tablets or computers. From the PhotoSpring app you can choose photos to send to the Smart Frame or you can set it up to automatically send every new picture you take. You can connect multiple frames to your app allowing you to send  the same or different photos to different frames. You can also connect multiple accounts to one frame, so lots of different family members can all send pictures to the same frame.

The PhotoSpring makes it really easy to enjoy and share family photos. The auto-update feature makes it effortless to constantly update the frame with new pictures. It brings photos off your SmartPhone and into your living room with minimal effort on your behalf. It makes a great gift for moms and dads as an easy way to view family photos at home or in the office. It is also is a great gift idea for grandparents, as many different family members can connect to their PhotoSpring and easily keep them updated with family pictures even if they live a long way away or even in a different country.

Available from PhotoSpring.com  or Amazon with 16, 32 or 80GB storage from $149. Read our full review .

 

 

 

 

 

myCharge Portable Power Outlet

myCharge Portable Power Outlet Laptop chargingThe Portable Power Outlet from myCharge is a portable power bank in class of it’s own. It has both a charging hub and an inverter so it can provide both AC and DC power. It is a great on-the-go power solution for camping, tailgating  and travel. It is also a very useful addition to a home emergency preparedness pack, as an emergency power source during power cuts. The Portable Power Outlet has a capacity of 20,800 mAh and features an AC charging port as well as 3 USB charging ports  (2x USB-A 1X USB-C.) This provides enough energy to power a 32″ TV or a laptop computer. Although it has a large capacity it is relatively small and light weighing only 1.5 lbs and measuring 5″ by 5″ by 1″.

When you switch it on a small LCD screen shows the battery level (in 8 increments.) There are also USB and AC plug icons with ON or OFF showing to indicate if they are in use. The maximum power output is 65W, if the output between the USB and AC ports exceeds this the USB ports automatically turn off. If the AC output exceeds 65W the AC port will switch off. The Portable Power Outlet has a built-in fan to prevent overheating when in use. I have charged my MacBook Pro and iPhone 7 at the same time and it is capable of charging them together. The 20,800 mAh capacity is enough to charge the average smartphone 10+ x, Tablet 2x, Laptop 1.5x or run a 32″ TV for 4 hours.

Available from myCharge.com or Best Buy for US$179.99. Currently on sale at Best Buy for $89.99 ! Check myCharge.com for Black Friday sale.

 

 

 

 

 

Smarter iKettle Wi-Fi Connected Electric Kettle

iKettle from Smarter is the intelligent way to heat water, whether it is for brewing the perfect cup of tea or heating a baby’s bottle.  Different varieties of tea have different ideal brewing temperatures and the iKettle allows the user to select the temperature they want to heat the water to for the prefect brew. You can control the iKettle from anywhere.  iKettle can be set to heat on a schedule to switch on before you get up or to be ready when you come home. Once heated it will maintain the desired temperature up to 40 minutes. IFTT allows integration with other smart home appliances so you can switch it on via Amazon Alexa or Google Home or program it to be triggered by movement on a Nest Baby Cam. 

Available from Best Buy for US$149.99

 

 

 

 

 

invisaWear jewelry for personal security

Invisawear is a wearable jewelry that includes an integrated battery that allows you to press a button which utilizes your smartphone to contact emergency services in an instant.  The jewelry uses an integrated app where you can push the button for emergency services even when you are away from your phone.  You can also dial using your smartphone and the app which will provide locations services to help the police more easily find you.  You can also configure an emergency contact list – where a text is sent with your location to your contacts.
Available from Invisawear for US$129 starting in January 2018 via Indegogo. Recommended for teens through adult.

 

 

 

 

 

MyCloud Home

My Cloud Home from Western Digital provides a secure place in your own home to store and access all your digital files so you no longer need to use 3rd party cloud services. My Cloud Home is connected to your home router and is simple to set up using your smartphone. With the My Cloud mobile and desktop apps you can access your photos, videos, music and files from anywhere you have an internet connection. You can set up your smartphone to automatically back up to My Cloud Home, making it easy to free up space on your devices. You can also have all the family computers backing up to it. Every member of the family can have their own private space on the family My Cloud Home, they can manage, access and share their content how they wish. A USB port makes it easy to download and transfer files to and from external storage devices. It is available in a variety of sizes to suit your family’s storage needs- single drive from 2-8TB and dual drive (mirror backup) up to 16TB.

Available exclusively from Best Buy from $159.99

 

 

 

 

 

Gifts Over $200

Touchjet Wave

Touchjet Wave turns a flat screen TV or monitor into a giant tablet. It can be used with any monitor or flat screen TV from 20-65″. It allows you to stream music & movies, play your favorite mobile games, create interactive presentations and collaborate on a huge digital whiteboard all using the biggest screen in your home. TouchJet Wave has Android built-in so you can download apps onto the Wave and play them on your TV. To use it you clamp the Wave to the top of your TV, plug it in to a HDML port, calibrate and you are ready to go. You can use your finger on the touchscreen, or use any soft touch stylus and when you want to sit back and relax you can also use your SmartPhone as a remote control. Wave uses a projector and infrared technology to track finger movements and taps translating them into Android commands. It is great for home and office – both work presentations and collaborations and your favorite mobile gaming apps can be played on the big screen. You can have a 65″ virtual tablet with Touchjet Wave without breaking the bank!  

Available from Touchjet.com or Amazon for US$299.99

 

 

 

 

 

Arlo Pro 2 Wirefree Security Camera System

 

 

 

Arlo Pro 2 weatherproof

 

The Arlo Pro 2 security system from NETGEAR is the latest high definition wireless camera system in the Arlo range. We reviewed the original Arlo in March 2015, it was a great system then, and has had lots of upgrades and improvements since. Arlo Pro 2 cameras can record in 1080p HD- giving high quality images, the cameras have a wide viewing angle – 130° and night vision is automatically triggered in low light conditions. They come with rechargeable batteries and can be used totally wire free or can be plugged in.  The Arlo magnetic mounting system makes installation very easy and moving cameras is a breeze. The Arlo Pro 2 cameras are rugged and designed to withstand the elements with an iP65 weather certification. They have 2-way audio, sound and motion detection.  A siren is built-in to the base station, and can be triggered remotely if you see any suspicious activity.

A rolling 7 days of motion and audio triggered recordings are stored for free on the Arlo server, paid plans are available if you want more storage. You can also store videos locally by attaching a USB to the base station. ARLO PRO 2 system has lots of optional accessories available including a solar charger, dual battery charger, security mounts, skins and extra rechargeable batteries.

The Arlo Pro 2 system is a very flexible WiFi HD security camera system. With it’s magnetic mounting system and rechargeable batteries it can be used almost anywhere. The system integrates with Amazon Alexa, Smart Things, Stringify and IFTTT to be an integral part of the Smart Home.

 Available from Amazon, Best Buy, Staples and Costco. RRP for starter set of base station and 2 cameras US$479.99 . Look out for great Black Friday Deals at Costco and Best Buy !

 

 

 

 

 

PicoBrew Pico Model C Beer Home Brewing Machine

The Pico Model C from PicoBrew is the perfect gift for the Craft Beer affectionado. The Pico Model C is a countertop home brewing machine that makes it easy to brew craft beers in the comfort of your own home. There are over 100 different “PicoPaks” available from a wide range of variety of craft breweries, there are Kombucha PicoPaks available too.

Each PicoPak is created to order and delivered to your door, so that the ingredients are at their freshest. Each PicoPak allows you to brew 5 litres of craft beer, and is packaged in a compostable container. The brewing process takes about 2 hours and then the beer is pumped into a keg to be fermented and carbonated. It is ready to drink in 6-14 days. Once the beer has been pumped into the keg the Pico C can be used to brew another batch of beer or Kombucha and can even be used as a Sous Vide cooker too. 

Available from Picobrew.com, Best Buy, Macy’s, Williams-Sonoma, Amazon for US$549

 

 

 

 

 

Apple Watch Series 3

The brand new Apple Watch 3.0 is a perfect companion to your smartphone. You can listen to music, use apps, view and respond to text messages and make phone calls all from your wrist.  Available from Apple.com, Target , Verizon Wireless and other retailers from US$329

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This post contains affiliate links, if you click on these The iMums may receive a small commission which helps to pay to run this site. Thank you for supporting us by using these links. Some items on this list have been received free of charge for review purposes.

Mary is originally from England but now lives in California with her husband, dog, cat and three children. Mary and her family love Apple products and own an iPad2, iPad3, iPad Mini, iTouch, iPhone5 and several MacBook Pros. They also love cub scouts, skiing, camping and hiking. The family iPads are also used for therapy for their daughters Apraxia (speech disorder).

11 Tech Toys for Kids of All Ages

11 Tech Toys for Kids of All Ages

Pixl Play Camera

The Pixlplay Camera from Pixl Toys is a  case and app that turns your (old) smartphone into a fun camera for kids.

JBuddies Studio Headphones

JBuddies Studio Headphones from JLab are great headphones for from 6- teen.

Smartphone Detector From My First Lab

The Smartphone Detector aka Smartphone Microscope Science Kit from My First Lab is a miniature microscope and LED light you attach to a Smartphone.

Garmin Vivofit Junior 2 Activity Tracker

The Garmin Vivofit Junior 2 is a great way to encourage kids to get up and active.

My First Lab Wow Scope

The World of Wonder (WOW) Scope from My First Lab is a great STEM gift to get kids interested in exploring science and nature.

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer is a physical toy which includes cards as well as the ability to take a photograph of them and display them on your device.

Bluebee Pals

Bluebee Pals are a cuddly companion which integrates with your smartphone or tablet and gives your child a voice., reads them a story and provides narration for your device

ProLOCK Mini from Rug-Ed case

Protect your kids devices using the ProLOCK Mini: iPad Mini 4 is a case designed by Rug-Ed which includes a tempered-glass screen protector, removable stand and locking fasteners with a tool which ensures that your iPad is not removed from it’s case accidentally.

KidiZoom Smartwatch by VTech

The VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch DX is a durable smartwatch that lets kids take pictures, videos, play games and more

Jimu Robot - Astrobot Kit

Jimu Robot Astrobot Kit from UBTECH is a great STEM gift. It is a robotic building system that allows a child to build one of 3 included robot designs

Cubelets® Robot Blocks by Modular Robots

The Cubelets TWELVE introduces kids to robotics, coding and design all in one toy.  Cubelets are a expandable system of robot blocks which can be paired with Bluetooth® for more fun.

 

 

 

 

Holiday gift shopping for kids can be so hard!  Tech is changing rapidly and kids always want to have the latest and greatest toys.  Below are some of our top picks for top kids tech that will have kids learning as well as being active. If you are looking for the latest, must have kid tech for gifts any time of year this guide contains some great ideas for the best tech gifts for kids.

 

For more great ideas check out our previous gift guides including our #STEM guide.  Be sure to also check out our other great gift guides.

 

 

 

Gifts Under $30

 

 

 

Pixl Play Camera

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Pixlplay Camera from Pixl Toys is a  case and app that turns your (old) smartphone into a fun camera for kids. It is designed to look like an old 35mm camera but chunky enough for little hands to hold it securely. The tough plastic case has a screen protector and provides protection against drops and dirt. The pixlplay connects to your smartphone via the headphone jack, allowing kids to use a shutter button to take their pictures. It comes with a free companion app that encourages your child to explore and take pictures whilst learning about colors, numbers and shapes. Compatible with  iPHONE 4, 5, 6,  and similar sized Android phones, can be used with iPhone 7, 8 with lightning  adapter (as no headphone jack.)

Available from Amazon for  US$29.99 Recommended for Ages 3-9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

JBuddies Studio Headphones

 

 

 

 

JBuddies Studio Headphones from JLab are great headphones for from 6- teen. They are volume limited (to 85db) to prevent hearing damage and are adjustable to fit different head sizes from age 6-16. Older kids will appreciate the fact they ae styled to look like adult headphones and come in a range of color options. They have in-line controls, a built-in microphone and tangle-free braided cable. The headband and ear cushions are padded and comfortable for extended wear.The JBuddies Studio Headphones fold when not in use for easier storage and transportation.

 

Available from Amazon and Target  for US$19.99 . Recommended for Ages 6-16

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Smartphone Detector From My First Lab

 

 

 

The Smartphone Detector aka Smartphone Microscope Science Kit from My First Lab is a miniature microscope and LED light you attach to a Smartphone. It has a strong plastic spring clip which is used to hold the microscope in place over the smartphone camera lens.To use simply switch on the smartphone camera and place the Smartphone Detector over the item you wish to magnify. If extra illumination is required the small but bright LED lamp can be switched on simply by turning its top. The light is powered by 3 watch batteries which can be easily replaced if required. It is a fun way for kids to examine small objects such as coins and stamps and can also be used for close ups of shells, leaves and other items. The Smartphone Inspector features 60X magnification, giving you great clarity on the items you inspect and it’s easy to take pictures too using your smartphone camera.

 Available from Amazon for US$12.99 . Recommended for Ages 12+ (but can easily be used by younger kids with supervision)

 

 

 

 

Gifts Under $100

 

 

Garmin Vívofit Junior 2 Activity Tracker

 

 

 

The Garmin Vivofit Junior 2 is a great way to encourage kids to get up and active. It is available with bands featuring characters from Star Wars, Marvel and Disney. The Vivofit Junior 2 has a color screen that can be customized with different character step icons. It not only tracks steps, sleep and active minutes but also tells the time, reminds kids to do chores and has built-in timers. Each character band has a corresponding app where by logging 60 active minutes a day the child can unlock new levels encouraging kids to keep active. Each character theme has 2 band options- a stretchy band designed for smaller wrists, and an adjustable band for older kids. The vivofit Jr. 2 is waterproof, has a 1 year battery life and can be worn 24/7. To encourage friendly competition kids can compete in a leaderboard with other family members with Garmin devices and can compete in Toe-to-ToeTM step challenges with friends with also have a vívofit jr. 2 device.

Available from Garmin.com Best Buy, Amazon and other retailers for US$99. Recommended for Ages 4+

CYBER WEEK SALE only $79.99 at Garmin.com !!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My First Lab Wow Scope

 

 

 

 

The World of Wonder (WOW) Scope from My First Lab is a great STEM gift to get kids interested in exploring science and nature. It is a binocular microscope with interchangeable 10X and 25X eyepieces, giving a total magnification of 20X and 50X. The WOW scope can be used with traditional glass microscope slides but also allows viewing of 3-D objects such as feathers, rocks and leaves. This lets kids view objects they find when out exploring in nature, without needing to do any slide preparation. My First Lab is a division of C & A Scientific who make scientific and educational microscopes so they use good quality glass optics for clearer viewing.  Read our full review.

Available from myfirstlab.com for US$69.99 Recommended for Ages 7+

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer

 

 

 

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer is a physical toy which includes cards as well as the ability to take a photograph of them and display them on your device. Inside the box are 51 flashcards, 12 non-toxic erasable markers and a QR code which activates the app. Cards inside the box include everything you would find in a home ranging from bathroom items (sink, tub, toilet, towel rack); bedroom (crib, loft bed, bunk beds, lights, flooring, characters, clothing for the characters,rocking chair, bookshelf, ); kitchen (table, counters, plant, laundry basket, stove, cabinets and living room (couch, stereo system, chair.) Note these are not all of the items – they are selected ones that I picked out. Read our full review.

Available from Amazon and Apple for US$39.99  Recommended for Ages 4+

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Bluebee Pals

 

 

 

Sammy the Bear pro -Talking Educational Learning Tool

Bluebee Pals are a cuddly companion which integrates with your smartphone or tablet and gives your child a voice.  My son loves Sammy the Bear which we pair with our iPad Mini.  He enjoys having Sammy read him stories, helping him interact with apps and even speaking with his Grandmother.  My son also listens to Pandora while we drive or sometimes I will stream video’s without giving him a tablet so he can listen to the storyline without having #screentime..

 Available from Bluebee Pals or Amazon for US$64.99 Recommended for ages 2+  and special needs families.

 

 

 

 

 

 

ProLOCK Mini from Rug-Ed case

 

 

 

Protect your kids devices using the ProLOCK Mini: iPad Mini 4 is a case designed by Rug-Ed which includes a tempered-glass screen protector, removable stand and locking fasteners with a tool which ensures that your iPad is not removed from it’s case accidentally.  The case features a handle at the top which allows for easy carrying; is thin and lightweight but protective of your device.  It also includes corner bumpers for drop protection.  The case can be used in a portrait or landscape mode on your device.  The case is tamper-proof and requires the use of a tool (which reminded me of an allen wrench) to lock in your tablet so that kids can not remove it.  Rug-Ed was started in 2012 and originally started by designing iPad cases for the educational environment.  They recently started offering the ProLOCK case for individual consumers to purchase. Rug-Ed plans to offer an iPhone case in the future as well.

Read our full review. RRP $39 USD and the case is available from Rug-Ed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

KidiZoom Smartwatch by V Tech

 

 

 

Do your kids always ask what time it is?  Do they want to track activity but you are afraid to give them a more expensive device?  Enter the VTech® Kidizoom® Smartwatch DX, this durable smartwatch lets kids take pictures, videos, play games and more.  The watch also includes a calendar and calculator, eight games using the touch screen and a motion sensor for action.

 Available from Amazon for US$58.00 Recommended for ages 4+

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gifts Under $200

 

 

Jimu Robot – Astrobot Kit

 

Jimu Robot Astrobot Kit from UBTECH is a great STEM gift. It is a robotic building system that allows a child to build one of 3 included robot designs -Astrobot, Rover or Astron or they can create their own. The kit is designed for ages 8+ and includes  371 snap together parts that are similar in style to Lego Technics, 5 robotoc servo motors, a speaker, 2 16 color LED light, an infrared sensor, ciontrol biox, rechareable battery and the JIMU robot app. When they are ready to build the app has step by step 3D 360°animated building instructions. Once they have finishing building the robot the STEM fun and learning continues as the child learns to program it using Blocky drag and drop programming. They can also use their imagination to program new moves with pose, record, playback system. The Jimu Robot Astrobot Kit is a really great STEM gift as it allow the child to both build and program a robot. The 3D building app is a great way to make the building part easier and Blocky programming is a great way to allow novice programmers to quickly feel comfortable coding.

The Jimu Robot Astrobot Kit from UBTECH is available from Amazon, Apple Stores for US$199.99. Other kits available from $99.99.  Recommended for Ages 8+

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gifts Under $300

 

Cubelets® Robot Blocks  by Modular Robots

 

 

 

The Cubelets TWELVE introduces kids to robotics, coding and design all in one toy.  Cubelets are a expandable system of robot blocks which can be paired with Bluetooth® for more fun.  Kids of all ages will love putting the blocks together using magnets, and making them move.  My older son and his friends also built a creation using Lego® which they used in conjunction with their Cublet creation.  Cublets are expandable as well and you can buy additional blocks as needed including the adapter for Lego.  Cubelets TWELVE includes 12 robot blocks and two Brick Adapters.  They also have apps for iOS and Android which allow you to code, control

Note: if you purchase directly from Modular Robotics and enter promo code “iMumFreebie” you get free Brick Adapters.  You must add the item to the cart prior to checkout.

Available from Amazon and Modular Robotics for US$269 Recommended for Ages 4+

 

For additional gift ideas check out all our previous gift guides and  Christmas Gift Guides . 

 

This post contains affiliate links, if you click on these The iMums may receive a small commission which helps to pay to run this site. Thank you for supporting us by using these links. Some items on this list have been received free of charge for review purposes.

 

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer – Review



Dr. Panda Plus: Home... iconDr. Panda Plus: Home Designer is a physical toy which includes cards as well as the ability to take a photograph of them and display them on your device.  Inside the box are 51 flashcards, 12 non-toxic erasable markers and a QR code which activates the app.  Cards inside the box include everything you would find in a home ranging from bathroom items (sink, tub, toilet, towel rack); bedroom (crib, loft bed, bunk beds, lights, flooring, characters, clothing for the characters,rocking chair, bookshelf,  ); kitchen (table, counters, plant, laundry basket, stove, cabinets and living room (couch, stereo system, chair.)  Note these are not all of the items – they are selected ones that I picked out.

What we love…

fun interactive app that showcases what an iPad can do using a physical toy and merging it with 3D design

What we’d love to see…

ability to save your creations on the camera roll, ability to move from house to house more easily, an outside space for kids to design and play in

Summary

Super fun app which brings Dr. Panda to life in physical play.  It can be played for long or short periods of time or longer periods of time.  Dr. Panda Plus Home Designer provides a fun augmented-reality like experience which helps kids be creative with art and design while helping to familiarize letters and words.

Our Rating

 

recommended-by-the-imums

To play, first you launch load the app on your device.  Next you scan the QR code which is located inside the Dr. Panda Plus box to activate the app.  Then you can take out the cards and start creating.  When playing with Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer with my kids – I usually separated the cards into categories like bedroom, characters, clothing and then also by room to make it easier for my toddler to follow along.  Each card is double sided – one that kids can color in using the included dry erase markers and the other is already colored in.  Once the card is done, you simply hold it up and take a photo of it using the camera on your device.  The object is rendered into 3D and then you can place it within the home.  My younger son loved taking photos of all of the objects to make his dream house – there were lots of flooring changes along with multiple beds in the bedroom,  With my older son – he’s a third grader he picked out specific cards he wanted to color prior to even launching the app.  He then colored them in using the included markers and making his own designs.  He was a bit more thoughtful in how he organized the house making a kitchen, bathroom, living room and bedroom as well as designing all the clothes for the various characters.  To wipe off the cards we used a baby wipe although any soft cloth will work.  A few times, my older son didn’t want to erase his creation so it did take a bit more “scrubbing” to get it off.  Each house has four rooms – and you can choose where you want the rooms to be placed.  When you take a photo the image can be lined up and then it “pops” into 3D mode for placing.  When you take the photo it also brings out letters which encourage kids to spell the name of the object they are creating – kids can choose to bypass this.  If you accidentally take a photo of an item or too many you can simply place it in the recycle bin.

I loved how easy this app and game were to use.  No rules no fuss!  I could play one way with my younger son and then with my older son he could be independent and color in his own cards to create the room and design it as he wished.  We could use the pre-designed cards or use the cards that we colored on/decorated and play.  I found it was easiest to scan things in bunches to complete one room at a time just to make it more fun.  My kids also enjoyed making multiple houses – they made one for Dr. Panda, another for Tao and a third for Meimi junior.  The also created a bunch of cute clothes for each character to wear.  In addition – my older son had a larger set of dry erase markers that he was able to use with the cards so he had more color choices.  The box holds the game and markers making it easy to keep everything together.  The cards are made of a sturdy cardboard that has stood up to repeated uses and did not bend despite the best efforts of my younger son.  The game can be used across multiple devices which was great as it meant my older son could play on his own iPad while my younger son and I could use a different iPad.

In terms of improvements – it would be neat if you could go from house to house within the app rather than having to open each house separately.  In addition, it would be nice if there were a “holding area” for you to scan your cards and that way you could wipe them off and make a different design without losing the first design.  We tried a few different ways to do this without success.  It would also be nice if there were a way to “back up” the QR code just in case something happened to the box.  It might also be fun to include mini games within the app from the various Dr. Panda titles to provide different activities for kids to do.

Dr. Panda Plus Home Designer provides a fun augmented-reality like experience which helps kids be creative with art and design while helping to familiarize letters and words.  My kids have spent hours playing with the app and each time they create a new house or go into play it’s a fun new experience.  I encourage them to narrate and tell me what they are doing and making during the process which also helps familiarize them with various names of objects.

Dr. Panda Plus Home Designer is available on Amazon for $39.99.

Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer
Dr. Panda Plus: Home Designer
by Dr. Panda Ltd

Category: Education
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX
Size: 206.26 MB

$FREE

Screenshots
(Click to enlarge)
Screenshots for iPad
(Click to enlarge)

NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.The links in this post may contain affiliate links where The iMums will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on our link, this helps to support the costs of running this site and we appreciate your support.

 

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.

blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System – Review



Blink Home MonitorBlink is a battery powered home monitoring system designed for homeowners and renters which can be easily placed throughout your residence.  The companion app, Blink for Home allows you to set motion alerts, watch live HD video, customize cameras and alert settings.  Set up is super easy – you simply plug in the Blink hub and then using your device download Blink for Home.  After opening the cameras and installing the AA lithium batteries, it’s easy to add them to your system.  After installing you can scan the QR code on the back of each camera to add it to your system.  After adding each camera, you take a photo of the location you plan to put it in so that you can easily tell which camera you want to check.  For purposes of the review I received the Blink Hub and two Blink indoor cameras.  I positioned the Hub near my router and one of the cameras near my front door.  I also placed the second camera downstairs.  There are no monthly fees, wires and it’s movable so if you find a particular location isn’t working well for you – it’s easy to move the camera.  Blink also offers a Blink XT Waterproof camera that can be used outside in the weather.

blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System is a battery powered home monitoring system that takes moments to set up that is perfect for those that rent, own or are simply visiting,  Through the app, you receive motion alerts, can watch live HD video, customize cameras and alerts to meet your needs.  I even brought Blink recently when I went away for a day, I grabbed my router, plugged it into the internet where we were and my cameras were online.

 

What we love…

blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System is easy to use wireless home monitoring system that helps you monitor your property including mailboxes.  It’s so easy to set up that my son did it!

What we’d love to see…

ability to toggle on/off the flash

Summary

Overall blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System is a great way for me to keep track of any movement in my home and watch my house from inside when I am expecting a package.  I love that it has no wires and is so easy to set up!

Our Rating

recommended-by-the-imums

I loved how easy blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System was to set up – I even had my 9 year old help me,  Simply scan the QR code using your iPhone or device and you take a quick snap after installing the battery.  The system was up and running in moments.  Blink has great battery life and I loved that you could move around the cameras as needed within the house easily.  Package theft is real, and I also loved that I could aim it outside to watch for when packages were delivered as well as monitor if anyone was here that wasn’t supposed to be.

One thing that I didn’t like about blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System was the “flash” when we used the camera.  I found that this would wake up my little one when I had it in his bedroom since it was bright.  It would be nice if there were a way to turn it off.

Overall blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System is a great, easy to set up home monitoring system that could be portable when I needed it to be. No wires, no fuss. I had the system up and running in about five minutes. The photo quality and videos were great and it was so easy to use! It’s great to use when away from home and the internet is running too! No phone line required.

blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System (as tested) RRP is $169.99. You can get a blink: Wireless Indoor Security Camera System with one camera for $99.99 USD. Blink XT Add On Camera is $119.99 USD.

Check out Blink Wireless Home Security & Video Monitoring Systems

Blink Home Monitor
Blink Home Monitor
by Immedia Semiconductor

Category: Utilities
Requirements: Compatible with iPad2Wifi-iPad2Wifi, iPad23G-iPad23G, iPhone4S-iPhone4S, iPadThirdGen-iPadThirdGen, iPadThirdGen4G-iPadThirdGen4G, iPhone5-iPhone5, iPodTouchFifthGen-iPodTouchFifthGen, iPadFourthGen-iPadFourthGen, iPadFourthGen4G-iPadFourthGen4G, iPadMini-iPadMini, iPadMini4G-iPadMini4G, iPhone5c-iPhone5c, iPhone5s-iPhone5s, iPadAir-iPadAir, iPadAirCellular-iPadAirCellular, iPadMiniRetina-iPadMiniRetina, iPadMiniRetinaCellular-iPadMiniRetinaCellular, iPhone6-iPhone6, iPhone6Plus-iPhone6Plus, iPadAir2-iPadAir2, iPadAir2Cellular-iPadAir2Cellular, iPadMini3-iPadMini3, iPadMini3Cellular-iPadMini3Cellular, iPodTouchSixthGen-iPodTouchSixthGen, iPhone6s-iPhone6s, iPhone6sPlus-iPhone6sPlus, iPadMini4-iPadMini4, iPadMini4Cellular-iPadMini4Cellular, iPadPro-iPadPro, iPadProCellular-iPadProCellular, iPadPro97-iPadPro97, iPadPro97Cellular-iPadPro97Cellular, iPhoneSE-iPhoneSE, iPhone7-iPhone7, iPhone7Plus-iPhone7Plus, iPad611-iPad611, iPad612-iPad612, iPad71-iPad71, iPad72-iPad72, iPad73-iPad73, iPad74-iPad74, iPhone8-iPhone8, iPhone8Plus-iPhone8Plus, iPhoneX-iPhoneX
Size: 78.66 MB

$FREE

Screenshots
(Click to enlarge)

 
NOTE: A product was supplied by the company for review purposes, no other form of compensation was received, all opinions stated in the review are those of the author and have been offered honestly.The links in this post may contain affiliate links where The iMums will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on our link, this helps to support the costs of running this site and we appreciate your support.

Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.

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