Dan’s Gift Guide: low cost tech accessories you may have overlooked


My favorite gift picks for this year include a couple smaller items that’ll complement your Apple setup, one to help you cut the cord and one to make you fall deeper into Apple fandom. Only one of my picks is priced just slightly north of $50, so any of them should be good for Secret Santa or stuffing some stockings.

Rather than pointing out this year’s obvious tech gift wins, I’ve gone with a handful of items that you probably overlooked and were most likely omitted from other gift guides you’ve read so far this year…

For being such a large company, Apple doesn’t make a lot of products. But there are still some that are often overlooked from casual and intense Apple fans. Take the Battery Charger for instance, hardly anyone knows it exists and even less actually own one. For less than $30, you’ll get a wall outlet charger in bright Apple white and six rechargeable AA NiMH batteries. Unlike other chargers, the Apple one is slim so it doesn’t block other wall outlets (if placed on the bottom outlet) or become an eye sore on your desk. Six batteries are just enough to keep your Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, and Bluetooth keyboard juiced up.

Availability: online/in-store

Here’s my wild card pick. The Giottos Rocket Air Blaster is something you didn’t know you needed until you get your hands on it. I came across it after searching for a way to free my camera lenses from dust and debris. Microfiber cloths left smudges and just pushed around liquids, while compressed air was too strong and can sometimes release liquids. But Giottos Air Blaster provides just the right amount of fresh air to blast your gadgets clean. The large model is available for less than $10.

Availability: online

Now it’s time for the most expensive item in my gift guide, but I promise it’s worth $59. Iconic: A Photographic Tribute to Apple Innovation should be on all Apple fans’ book shelves.

This large hardcover book includes introductions by Jim Dalrymple and Steve Wozniak and over 300 pages of content. All of the images were taken specifically for this book and span Apple’s major product categories: desktops, portables, peripherals, prototypes, iDevices (iPad, iPod and iPhone) and packaging. It’s a slam dunk gift for any Apple fan who’s seemingly impossible to buy for.

Availability: online

The Mohu Leaf Paper-Thin Indoor HDTV Antennas start at just $25, but are invaluable to any cord cutter. Simply connect the antenna to any HDTV with the included coax cable, run channel scan, and within minutes you’ll have access to dozens of HD and SD channels for no additional cost. Channel selection will depend on how far from a broadcast tower you are, so be sure to check this coverage map before making your purchase. I’m using one in my guest bedroom instead of paying my cable company for an additional HDTV cable box. I continue to be astounded at the image quality and channel selection it provides.

Availability: online/in-store

Desktop cord managers are nothing new, but many only support a single cable or are overkill. Quirky Cordies secure cables so they stay at arms length. You’ll never have to fish a rogue cable out from behind your desk again. It includes four slots, but you can fit more cables as you can stack multiple cables in a single slot. I love its small footprint and weighted bottom. Everything from fat printer USB cables to thin headphone cables fit without issue. Available in a range of colors for just $4.99.

Availability: online/in-store

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