What the Tech: Stocking stuffers

What the Tech

Who says kids are the only ones who get Christmas stockings? The question should be, what you should put in a stocking for an adult or teenager? Take a look at these small devices and gadgets that’ll make Christmas stockings cool again.

Charging blocks are no longer included when you get a new smartphone and if you’re still using one from a few years ago, it’s time to upgrade. IQ charging blocks from Anker charge an iPhone 13 3 times faster than the block they’re probably using now. The 20w charging block is small enough to fit between other chargers on a powerstrip. I’ll also charge watches and iPads but don’t include a cable, so you might want to toss in a USB-C to lightning charging cable as well. Braided cables don’t break as easily as plastic ones.

Never underestimate the need for a portable battery. Especially if they’re always on the go. Belkin, RAV Power, Anker, and Mophie are popular brands. These generally cost $30 and up.

College students and adults will appreciate hard drives. A 128 GB USB flash drive holds thousands of photos, music, documents. Less expensive than a few candy bars and lifesavers, this flash drive is only about $18.

Folks who work remotely need a big hard drive. Sandisk solid-state hard drives are smaller than a credit card yet hold 2 TB of data. Since there are no moving parts, it can take lots of tosses of thumps of everyday use. 2TB drives are $250, a 1TB drive is $130.

If their desk is a mess, a magnetic cable organizer gets their workspace in order. Anker has released a cable management organizer for the desktop that uses magnets and clips. Just pull them out when you need a charge, and return them to the holder when you’re done. It’s $12.

If they’re an iPhone user, Apple AirTags is a cool choice. Similar to a Tile tracker, these stay connected by using Apple’s FindMy technology, where, if lost or misplaced, uses other iPhone’s to help locate your item using the FindMy app.

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