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Sunday, January 16, 2022

Christmas gifts: the best tech gadgets for all the family | Consumer affairs

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If you’re caught for concepts for Christmas presents this 12 months and in search of one thing extra thrilling than socks, listed below are some devices that may well be simply the price tag.



From folding telephones, headphones and VR headsets to good audio system and eco-friendly telephone instances, all of those nice devices are very good, constructed to final and gained’t finally end up languishing in a drawer or, worse, the bin.

Fairphone 4 smartphone

The Fairphone 4 is a contemporary 5G Android telephone this is ethically produced and repairable at house. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £499



Probably the most moral, repairable smartphone you’ll purchase somebody has had a large improve for 2021 and has a extra fashionable design, 5G and quicker chips. The Fairphone 4 is constructed to final, with device reinforce till 2027 and a five-year guaranty.

It nonetheless incorporates various recycled and ethically sourced fabrics, has modular portions you’ll change your self with only one small screwdriver, and a detachable battery, which is nice for roughly two days.

The digital camera continues to be a piece in growth, there’s no headphone jack and it isn’t the quickest smartphone you’ll get however it does the activity with little fuss. Fairphone will recycle an identical tool for every unit bought, making the telephone e-waste impartial, too. You’re paying about £200 greater than for a similar telephone from the corporate’s opponents however that is helping pay the manufacturing facility staff who make the Fairphone an actual residing salary.

Samsung Galaxy Z Turn 3 smartphone

samsung galaxy z flip 3
The Galaxy Z Turn 3 has one lengthy display that folds in part like a make-up compact. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £949 – offers from £799

No longer most effective is the Z Turn 3 a state-of-the-art piece of generation however it’s a super telephone as well. Samsung’s reinvention of the turn telephone places a 6.7in versatile display within the centre of a vintage clamshell design, giving it the most efficient of each worlds: a large, luscious display to rival superphones and a compact dimension, this means that you’ll in truth have compatibility it on your pocket when folded up.

Excellent cameras, best efficiency and nice device with no less than 4 years of updates, plus water resistance imply you aren’t dropping the rest in comparison with commonplace telephones that value simply as a lot. Plus, there’s something very pleasurable about ultimate the telephone to hold up on a decision.

If you wish to have a fair larger show, Samsung’s Galaxy Z Fold 3 places a folding pill display on your pocket, too.

Apple iPad (ninth gen) pill

apple ipad 9th generation
The ten.2in iPad is the entire pill maximum want for gazing TV, surfing the internet and viewing footage. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £319

In relation to a pill for gazing TV, enjoying video games and studying the Parent, Apple’s fundamental iPad is the most suitable choice for most of the people. The recycled aluminium frame is cast, the ten.2in display is nice and the audio system are respectable. The tough chip, lengthy battery lifestyles and 64GB of garage will likely be sufficient for apps and video games. Very lengthy device reinforce approach the pill will final years, too.

The intense new 12-megapixel “Centre Degree” digital camera routinely pans and scans to stay you in view for video calls. Apple’s App Retailer has the entire media and pill apps you have to need, and equipment akin to keyboards and instances are extensively to be had if you wish to use it extra as a pc.

Apple MacBook Air M1

apple macbook air
The MacBook Air is skinny, mild, tough, lasts a very long time on battery and is constructed from recycled aluminium. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £999 – offers from £850

Apple’s transfer from Intel processors to M1 chips of its personal design has remodeled the MacBook Air from a low-power skinny and light-weight device into the most efficient client laptop computer you’ll purchase. The M1 chip is superfast and robust however permits gamechanging battery lifestyles in far more than 16 hours of labor – more than one days clear of the charger at the moment are imaginable.

It has no fan, so runs completely silently, the display is superb, the keyboard and trackpad are firstclass, the graceful frame is constructed from recycled aluminium and it incorporates recycled tin and plastic, too.

The webcam isn’t the most efficient and it most effective has two USB-C/Thunderbolt ports however it’s a must to spend an important quantity extra to overcome the M1 MacBook Air.

Ikea Symfonisk image body wifi speaker

Ikea Symfonisk picture frame
This image body hides a very good Sonos wifi speaker in the back of a work of artwork. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £179

Ikea’s partnership with the wifi-speaker maker Sonos has created some novel units. Following on from a shelf and a lamp that double as audio system, comes the Symfonisk image body, which hides a speaker in the back of artwork in your wall – and it sounds unusually nice.

It may be hung or leant in opposition to the wall, streams track over wifi from virtually any track provider to be had and will also be related up wirelessly as a couple with some other or as a part of a unbroken multiroom audio machine. It nonetheless wishes an influence cable working down your wall however you get a collection of white or black frames and the artwork print will also be swapped out simply for a collection of others – regardless that no longer but your personal print.

Sonos Roam speaker

sonos roam
The Sonos Roam is a transportable speaker that sounds so nice it would be best to use it at house, too. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £179

Maximum Bluetooth audio system are advantageous at the street however are straight away relegated to a drawer while you get house. No longer so the Sonos Roam, which goes so effectively you’ll need to use it in the home, too.

It has wifi for without delay streaming track at house, supporting almost each track provider beneath the solar and Alexa or Google Assistant voice regulate. It has Bluetooth, too, for hooking up your telephone at the street. It’s water resistant, sturdy, mild and compact however packs a large, high quality sound. It lasts 10 hours on battery, charged by way of USB-C or wi-fi charging within the base. It may possibly also be a part of a multiroom audio setup with different Sonos audio system. Sonos guarantees to reinforce the Roam for a minimum of 5 years after it stops being bought however has a historical past of doing so for for much longer and you’ll get the battery changed if it wears out.

Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones

sony wh-1000xm4
Sony’s best noise-cancelling headphones are to be had in a spread of colors, no longer most effective gray. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £259 – offers from £249

Sony’s best wi-fi headphones have an unwieldy call however are completely unbelievable. They’re superlight and at ease even for prolonged listening classes, have 30+ hours of battery lifestyles, are to be had in a collection of colors and fold up smartly for go back and forth.

They’ve extraordinarily efficient noise-cancelling that works similarly on flights or a trip. In addition they sound good, generating the type of glowing audio that can have you ever finding new main points in well-worn tracks. They’ve a super set of contact controls for playback and quantity, plus they may be able to attach to 2 units concurrently by way of Bluetooth however have a cable, too. They’re even repairable and you’ll change the battery if it wears out, which is uncommon on the earth of headphones.

Audio-Technica ATH-M50x headphones

Audio-Technica ATH-MX50x
To be had in black or a sequence of particular colors together with steel orange, those headphones are studio legends for a explanation why: they sound nice. {Photograph}: Audio Technica

RRP: £130 – offers from £105

If you wish to give a collection of stressed headphones that sound nice and can pass the space, you’ll’t pass a ways fallacious with those. Tremendous pleased with spacious ear cups and a well-padded scarf, they sound good with impartial, balanced audio that has made them extraordinarily well-liked by track manufacturers. Crank up the track and revel in. Their closed-back design stops everybody else from having the ability to pay attention what you’re paying attention to however they may be able to most effective block a small quantity of out of doors noise. They fold up reasonably compactly and really feel as though they may be able to take a beating.

The cable is detachable and the headphones are normally repairable, so if one thing does spoil you don’t must bin them. Audio-Technica additionally makes a model with Bluetooth for a little bit more cash.

Samsung Galaxy Buds 2 headphones

samsung galaxy buds 2
The Galaxy Buds 2 are Samsung’s highest true-wireless earbuds but. {Photograph}: Samsung

RRP: £139 – offers from £99

Samsung’s newest true wi-fi earbuds are its highest but. They don’t skimp on options, with a cast Bluetooth 5.2 connection, nice energetic noise-cancelling for blockading out the trip and nice sound. They’ve nice contact controls for playback, final for as much as 5 hours of track and fee absolutely 3 times within the compact case.

The app for updates is most effective to be had on Android and they’re most effective splashproof. However they’re more repairable than most true wi-fi earbuds, so it’s imaginable to switch the battery and connect them if one thing does pass fallacious.

Apple Watch Sequence 7

apple watch series 7
The Apple Watch Sequence 7 is the most efficient smartwatch however most effective works with an iPhone. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £369

The most productive smartwatch you’ll get for an iPhone. Its large display, at ease have compatibility, 50m water resistance and slick efficiency are unrivalled. It doesn’t harm that it has one of the crucial maximum complete fitness and health monitoring options to be had, together with the power to take an ECG. It’s manufactured from recycled aluminium and has an inexpensive choice of third-party apps, too, together with Spotify with offline track downloads. Should you don’t need the ECG or an always-on display the Watch SE is inexpensive at £249.

Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 4 is the most efficient smartwatch for Android and is ready 80% as nice because the Apple Watch, with lots of the similar health-tracking options and a extra conventional spherical watch form for £219.

Oculus (Meta) Quest 2 VR headset

oculus quest 2
There’s not anything fairly just like the PC and cable-free enjoy of VR within the Quest 2 for escapism. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £299

The Oculus Quest 2 from Meta (AKA Fb) is a leap forward in digital fact headsets that jettisoned the will for cables and a strong PC to create a easy, immersive set of goggles you’ll simply strap on to go into a fully other international. The headset is strong sufficient to make the enjoy clean and convincing. It’s beautiful mild and at ease. The battery lasts about 3 hours, and there’s an ever rising library of video games and stories, together with from big-name manufacturers akin to Famous person Wars, Beat Saber and Resident Evil.

The recipient will want a Fb account and sufficient room to stroll and swing their hands round however there’s not anything fairly adore it for escapism.

Google Nest Hub 2

Google nest hub 2
The Nest Hub 2 tracks sleep the usage of radar moderately than a machine at the wrist and makes a super picture body. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £90 – offers from £54

Google’s second-generation Nest Hub places the corporate’s voice assistant in a handsome 7in good show produced from 54% recycled plastic. With out a digital camera to fret about, it makes a nice alarm clock. It may possibly wake you with a dawn impact and sound, and you’ll silence alarms through waving your hand at it. It additionally options radar-based sleep monitoring and not using a wish to put on a machine. The display generally is a good virtual picture body for all of your favorite snaps.

Google Assistant comes in handy, and the speaker’s beautiful nice, in a position to play radio together with BBC, Spotify and others, or movement track by way of Bluetooth out of your telephone, making it simply as nice in the living room or kitchen.

Amazon Echo Dot

amazon echo dot
The fourth-generation Echo Dot is to be had without or with an LED show for the time. {Photograph}: Samuel Gibbs/The Parent

RRP: £49.99 – offers from £29

As a small good speaker to play track and the radio, set timers and solution questions, the lovable ball-shaped Echo Dot is superb. Merely ask Alexa for BBC or industrial radio and also you’re away. The speaker is healthier than competition’ and loud sufficient for small rooms. You’ll be able to flip two right into a stereo pair. It helps maximum commonplace track services and products over wifi, or you’ll attach your telephone by way of Bluetooth or the three.5mm analogue jack at the again.

It comes without or with a hidden LED show for the time or alarms, and incorporates recycled material, plastic and aluminium.

Logitech MX Keys Mini keyboard

logitech mx keys mini
Sexy and with very good typing and key really feel, there aren’t many slimline keyboards higher than the MX Keys Mini. {Photograph}: Logitech

RRP: £99 – offers from £87

Running from house generally is a little bit of a drag, so including a little bit little bit of luxurious to the pc the one you love is caught in entrance of for hours on finish could make it a little bit extra bearable for them. Logitech’s newest rechargeable Bluetooth keyboard is a compact model of its good MX Keys. With one of the crucial highest laptop-style typing you’ll get, it makes each key-press responsive and pleasurable, whilst no longer taking over an excessive amount of room on a table.

It’s produced from as much as 30% recycled plastic, works with more than one platforms and will pair to as much as 3 units immediately, briefly switching between them on the press of a key, has an automated backlight and various customisation choices, too.

Microsoft Ocean Plastic Mouse

microsoft ocean plastic mouse
This Bluetooth mouse is produced from recycled plastic bottles taken from the sea. {Photograph}: Microsoft

RRP: £25

The Ocean Plastic Mouse is a unique version of Microsoft’s Bluetooth Mouse, which is made with 20% recycled plastic cleared from the sea and given a fab speckled glance. It’s going to last as long as 365 days on an AA battery (use a chargeable) and you’ll mail an outdated mouse to Microsoft for recycling.

Targus EcoSmart laptop computer bag vary

Targus Cypress Security EcoSmart
The Targus Cypress Safety EcoSmart is produced from 17 recycled plastic bottles. {Photograph}: Targus

RRP: £49.99

In relation to baggage to truck tools round there are many choices however few have fairly one of these storied historical past as Targus – the inventor of the primary private laptop sporting case in 1982. The newest EcoSmart vary of Targus laptop computer baggage comprises backpacks, instances and sleeves, which can be produced from as much as 26 recycled plastic bottles every.

Pela telephone instances

pela pink peaks iPhone case
Pela instances are available in quite a lot of colored and transparent designs for a wide range of smartphones and different devices. {Photograph}: Pela

RRP: £28 and up

Pela makes handsome instances that upload grip and drop coverage on your telephone – and don’t must finally end up as landfill whenever you’re accomplished with them. The instances feel and appear like fancy common plastic instances however are produced from a starch-based polymer blended with flax straw, which makes them extra environmentally pleasant to supply and compostable on the finish in their lifestyles.

Instances are to be had for a wide range of telephones, with more than a few transparent and arty designs to make a choice from.

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