With one of the biggest Indian festivals — Diwali — nearly here, you are likely looking forward to dressing up, eating a great deal of sweets, and celebrating with family. But Diwali is also a time of gift-giving, be it purchasing jewelry on the auspicious day of Dhanteras, or exchanging pre-packaged boxes of dry fruits in situations in which you do not know someone well enough.
And of course, there is the last hotel: giving money in an envelope or a gift card to a particular store or website. But if you are trying to become more thoughtful this season, and want to put a smile on the gadget-lover in your household, here are six gift ideas for techies this Diwali:
A wireless charger
Samsung Wireless Charging Pad
Now that Apple has included support for Qi wireless charging in its latest phones, a wireless charging pad makes for a worry-free Diwali gift for the person who you know who loves their phone and likes things to be convenient. Needless to say, “wireless” charging is still a misnomer given that the charging pad still needs to be wired itself, but it’s a phrase we have come to take as a society.
Samsung’s newest Charging Pad — available only in Black, and in Rs. 2,999 — works with most high-end Android phones (except Google Pixel two, which doesn’t have wireless charging) and all of the new iPhone models, including iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X. You can even choose the older model — Samsung Wireless Charging Pad EP-PG920I — which costs Rs. 1,800. It does not charge as quickly as another one, but it’s only marginally slower.
Amazon Echo + Syska LED / Philips Hue
If you know someone who’s eager to make the jump into the Internet of Things, assist them convert their location into a smart home with a base device with the widest third-party service, and a few intelligent lights so they do not have to get up for the switch. Amazon’s Echo range of devices are now up for pre-order in India, and you’ll be able to read our extensive guide to figure out the one that will work best.
For least commitment, pick up the Echo Dot — the least expensive of the lot at Rs. 3,149 (as a portion of pre-order offer) — and Syska Smartlight LED, which will work with Alexa upon launching, and costs Rs. The Echo Dot can do much more thanks to Alexa, including play music, set alerts, check calendar, weather and scores, and create shopping lists, purchase food from Zomato, or perhaps call a taxi from Ola.
While the Echo Dot is fantastic for those who possess their own audio equipment, the bigger Echo in Rs. 6,999will suit individuals who prefer convenience over quality, owing to the much better in-built speakers. And if you’re willing to spend more on the lights, the Philips Hue is a great upgrade pick, starting at Rs. 5,995to get a single bulb and the Hue Bridge that joins them together. Additional Hue bulbs cost Rs. 1,799to get White Ambiance (warm white to cool day light) and Rs. 3,890 for Colour Ambiance (16 million colors).
A coffee maker
A fantastic coffee maker is the kind of Diwali gift that you won’t have anyone directly request, but java lovers will appreciate it to no end, given that the absolute convenience of never having to make coffee on your own, and the cost savings of not going to the closest café every day. The Morphy Richards New Europa can do both espresso and cappuccino, and it can make four cups simultaneously, which is ideal for a home.
It’s got excellent reviews from many Amazon buyers, and it’s an inexpensive option at Rs. 3,780. If you’re willing to invest more and don’t mind a bit of wait, the Mr. Coffee 4-Cup Switch Coffee Maker — in $75(about Rs. For all those friends that enjoy a cold brew, then you should consider the OXO Good Grips Cold Brew, which comes in at Rs. 8,217.
An e-book reader
Amazon’s own line-up of ebook readers — the Kindle — offers the most extensive library in terms of sheer size, and the best rates you’ll find anywhere. Out of the four available models, the Kindle Paperwhite is the best option to go with, and it’s down to Rs. 8,499 as a portion of Amazon’s Diwali sale. It’s light, small, legible in daylight, along with the e-paper screen doesn’t hurt your eyes over an elongated period unlike phone displays.
The Paperwhite’s display offers 300 dpi pixel density, which means you get crisp text no matter what size text you opt for. The only downside is that no Kindle natively supports the EPUB file format, the open format that’s common among freely available books. Thankfully, a free software for Windows, macOS and Linux called Calibre converts EPUB files into the arrangement that Kindle uses.
Be it earbuds, over-ear or wireless, Bose now offers the best-in-class noise cancelling. The audio quality isn’t great on either of the three, however they all sound decent and are comfy. The best one to go for right now is the Bose QuietComfort 25, which are down to Rs. 15,119 thanks to Amazon’s Diwali sale. Be sure that you get the model that works for your phone: Android or iOS.
The QC25 offer an average of 25 dB drop in noise according to industry testing and consumer reviews, and may be folded up into a case the size of a book while not in use. You’ll require a single AAA battery to power the noise-cancellation, and the QC25 additionally come with an airplane adaptor that gives you a two-prong jack to your in-flight entertainment needs.
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A robot vacuum
iRobot Roomba + Braava
Thanks to living in a tropical, dust-filled environment, keeping your home clean in India can be a full-time occupation, which is why most people prefer to hire someone to do it for us each day. But if you’ve trouble trusting someone with your home while you are gone, or want someone to help you if the cleaner requires a day away, a robot can be ideal help.
IRobot is the only big company to have an official presence in India, and it offers two product categories: a normal vacuum to scoop up dust, hair, and other debris, along with a mopping robot which helps wash your floors with a sterile- or – damp-mop. The iRobot Roomba 616 is the entry-level option in the prior bracket at Rs. 26,900, with the iRobot Braava Jet 240 the latter pick in Rs. 19,900.