Buying for somebody that has it all is damn well near impossible. Nobody fits that mold better than tech early adopters/enthusiasts. In this gift guide, we have some ideas for techies who are into Google and Android. The central conceit is finding upgrade gifts and trinkets that an Android fan might not otherwise get themselves.
USB-C Titan Security Key
The first trinket on this list is actually a trinket in size. Everyone should use a security key for 2-Factor Authentication (or as Google calls it 2-Step Verification). Speaking of the company, they just released a new USB-C Titan Security Key manufactured by Yubico.
While you might be tempted to get the wireless Bluetooth/NFC/USB fob that you can just wireless tap to authorize login attempts, I recommend USB-C. It’s future proofed, and plugging into your phone’s port is just faster. This particular model costs $40 on the Google Store and is priced rather competitively.
My first upgrade buy on this list are AirPods. Yes, the Apple headphones actually work quite well with Android devices. They are also the best Bluetooth audio devices out there for their tiny size that will leave you in wonder after every use. It’s better to have a stick in your ear rather than a large gumdrop. The $199 AirPods with wireless charging case slots quite nicely into any setup. The upgrade to this upgrade is gifting noise canceling AirPods Pro at $249 for that special Android fan in your life.
In most backpacks today, you don’t really need to place laptops or tablets in a separate sleeve or case. That said, some of them are very nice and make you more likely to carry around just the protection and device. If we’re taking about Pixelbooks, Bellroy makes a nice line of sleeves and now backpacks.
In addition to upgrades and items people just won’t get for themselves are extras of things. Having a spare Stadia Controller lets more people partake in Google’s ambitious game streaming service. The green “Wasabi” variant is the go-to spare to purchase for $69, but I’d also suggest Clearly White. It’s quite iconic in person and the most Google-y color choice.
Portable batteries and tiny chargers
Back to upgrades, and this is a twofer. You can never have enough portable batteries, and the technology is often shrinking for more and more compact units. Everybody has a pack, but a newer slim one is always appreciated. On that vein, look at compact charger tech — like the 18W Anker PowerPort III Nano that’s the size of Apple’s infamous 5W model and only $20.
If the person you’re buying for is a Pixel 3/3a/4 owner, get them a tripod to allow for astrophotography when taking pictures of the night sky. It’s the best way to get an accurate starry picture from their cameras. Almost any will do — consider a full-length one for the great outdoors, but make a smartphone clamp that connects to the standard tripod mount is included.
The beauty of reading books on your phone is how it’s always with you when have a free stretch. However, the siren call of the web, notifications, and social media often cuts down on that reading time. Consider getting avid readers a Kindle. In 2019, they’ve become quite premium ($269 for the Oasis) or $129 for the Paperwhite, and are nice dedicated devices for just reading.
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