Is it just me or does December fly by? The holiday rush is definitely upon us. Thankfully I’m almost finished with my shopping. Each year it gets tougher and tougher to know what to get, or rather more and more expensive. The little gifts you could buy your brother and sister turn into televisions and computers. Well here is my 2010 gift guide for those people that are left on your list. Some of them are more expensive than others but all of them are tailored for the business person in your life.
Kindle – The Amazon Kindle (and it’s competitor, Barnes and Noble’s Nook) should top the holiday list this year. The eReader craze is one of the big fads for 2010. I personally have a Kindle and love it. I read more than I ever have and I save a lot of space and money on books. Within 60 seconds I can find a book, purchase it and have it in my hand. The best news is they have come down in price substantially. The original Kindle was released in November 2007 and cost a hefty $399. Today you can get a Kindle for $139. If someone’s an avid reader or traveler this could make the perfect gift.
iPad – If the Kindle isn’t the gift of the year then this will probably be it. I’ll be honest, I prefer to read a book on the Kindle but surf the internet on an iPad. I think they have 2 different uses. The Kindle has e-ink technology so it doesn’t cause as much eyestrain when reading while the iPad comes in full color and is a lot more conducive to internet browsing. The iPad has been a huge hit after selling over 4 million units in the 3rd quarter of this year. I have several friends who are replacing their main computer with an iPad. Hook up a keyboard and mouse and you have a desktop; buy a case like this and you have a laptop; don’t do either and you have a full-blown touch screen computer for $500. That’s hard to beat!
Moleskin Notebook – Sounds boring? Well, maybe but these notebooks are loved by many. They definitely aren’t the cheapest but all you have to do is look around online and you’ll see the craze. People laser engrave them and turn them into Kindle cases along with all sorts of other things. Most of all, they are an excellent notebook for whatever you need it for. The company has specifically designed them for each task you might need. Taking notes is an inevitable part of day-to-day life and this is the top performer for the job.
Fisher Bullet Space Pen – Again this might seem boring to you but every person needs a nice pen. These pens have quite a history and date back to 1953. The original intent of Paul Fisher (the inventor) was to come up with the best type of universal refill. Stores were having to stock lots of different types of refill cartridges. He saw a huge market to become the standard and designed a new type of cartridge as well as ink that could be used in the freezing cold, desert heat, underwater and upside down. There is your history lesson for the day. Anyways, this is a top-notch pen for anyone and definitely a favorite for an affordable gift. (Runner-up: Beta Pen – doesn’t use ink and can last a really long time)
SkyRoll Garment Bag – This is perfectly designed for the business traveler. The garment bag rolls up to make sure your business suits aren’t wrinkled and is small enough to be stored in an overhead bin (always check with your carrier to see if it’s considered small enough for carry-on luggage). It can hold over a week’s worth of clothes and even has spots for your toiletries. Overall, it’s one well-designed and impressive piece of luggage for $150.
Keurig or Tassimo – These have been around for a while but if you have a coffee-drinking friend who doesn’t own one then you could make them extremely happy. Everyone knows that business people consume a lot of coffee. On average Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee per day (statistic) (3.1 cups per person per day). The Keurig and Tassimo can help you improve your average! Each can make you one cup of your preferred coffee in under 2 minutes. Both companies have a large assortment of different types and each one costs about $150.
Valet Charging Station – You can find a ton of different versions. Just make sure it either comes with a power strip or has a place for one. Can’t tell you how many times I walked in and set my keys/wallet/cell phone somewhere and then didn’t remember where I put them. I’ve not gotten into the habit that everything goes on the valet when I come in. It’s a simple idea but include a charging station with it and now you have a good place to keep all your little devices and stay organized.
MiFi – These allow you to always be connected to the internet wherever you are. For the traveler, these can be a lifesaver. With the MiFi you can have up to 5 connections connected wirelessly and able to take the “internet” with you wherever you go. As speeds increase on cell networks, these have the potential to replace your home internet providers especially for those in remote locations. The device is free with a 2 year contract but you’ll have to pay for the monthly data plans.
Pico Projector – For the mobile presenter, these are perfect. You can connect an iPod, cell phone, laptop, etc then project an image onto a wall from a device that’s as small as some cell phones. It’s perfect for conferences, entertainment or collaborative working. My boss has one of these and loves hers!
Slingbox or Netflix – Everyone wants convenience of being able to watch their movies or TV shows wherever they are. Well here are 2 solutions among lots of others. The Slingbox allows you to watch your television on your computer from anywhere in the world. You plug in the slingbox to your cable and internet and you now have access wherever you are (even on your cell phone). I love my Netflix. For $10 per month, I have access to thousands of shows and movies instantly and I also have unlimited DVD rentals (1 at a time). There are so many Netflix-enabled devices from gaming systems (Xbox, PS3 and Wii) to the stand-alone devices (Roku [$60] and Apple TV [$99]).
That wraps up the business gift guide. Happy shopping!