We play with a lot of stuff over the course of the year, so I’d like to think we have some insights into good gift ideas for the upcoming holiday season.
This list represents the things that have come across our desk this year that we think are worthy of gifts over the holidays. These recommendations are realistic. We’re not going to recommend a $500.00 computer. That being said, we do highly recommend the iPad.
Twelve South BookBook:
There’s a slew of iPad cases on the market, but I haven’t had one that’s turned as many heads as the Book Book from Twelve South. Early on, I walked into an Apple Store, and then for some reason had to pull out an iPad. The sales clerk gasped when he saw it. The pictures don’t do this thing justice. It’s a beauty. It’s not cheap at $69.99, but it’s probably the best looking iPad case I’ve come across. Personally, I prefer the Red edition. The Book Book is $69.99 on Amazon.
Incase PU Book Jacket for iPad:
When it comes to iPad cases, it’s usually a safe bet for manufacturers to try to reproduce the Moleskine. The Incase PU Book Jacket for iPad is easily the best of the bunch. It weighs in at a reasonable $39.95 on Amazon.
Otterbox iPad Defender
Sometimes there’s a need for a rugged case. A lot of companies claim that their cases can protect your iPad from a drop, but rarely is it the truth. This case is pretty sturdy, and the time I’ve spent with it has me convinced that it can handle rough quite well. You can buy the Otterbox iPad Defender on Amazon for $50.29.
Hard Candy Cases iPad Stylus
There’s a lot of debate about the need for styluses with touch screen devices. I’m personally on the fence. There’s definitely note taking applications that would benefit from one. The Hard Candy Stylus is the most functional one we’ve tested this year. It’s heavy and doubles as a pen, which is a lot more than we can say about some of the others we’ve tested. This stylus comes in at $39.95 on Amazon.
Ten One Design Pogo Stylus:
This one’s a little bit of a cheater pick. The Ten One Particle case also comes with a Pogo Sketch Stylus. The Stylus doesn’t have the same build quality as the Hard Candy option, but the case kind of makes up for that. If you’re the type of person who loses pens a lot, this might be the better option for you. The Pogo Sketch Stylus attaches to the case. This case plus stylus combo is $22.75 on Amazon.
iPad Stands / Docks
Twelve South Compass:
Twelve South is making the list again, and no, they aren’t paying us. This iPad Stand is a thing of beauty. It’s well made and very easily complements your iPad. As the picture below demonstrates, it packs up nicely, and will fit quite well in your laptop bag. It’s really hard to go wrong with anything from Twelve South this holiday season. They have a quality lineup. The Compass iPad stand sells for $39.99 on Amazon.
Apple iPad Keyboard Dock:
Keyboards are often a love-hate thing for iPad users. Some swear by them, and others just use the on screen keyboard. If you’re looking for a dock and a keyboard for your iPad lover, this is a mighty fine option. Some people have even managed to do away with their laptop entirely after relying on one of these for a while. It’ll make a great gift. The iPad Keyboard Dock is $69.00 on Amazon.
Other / Apple Peripherals
iPad Camera Connection Kit:
The iPad Camera Connection Kit is more than a connector kit for your iPad. It unofficially supports a host of USB devices, as well as cameras and SD cards. If you’ve replaced a laptop with an iPad, and you’re wondering how you’re going to get your photos onto your iPad, this is the solution. It’s also been known to “unofficially” support USB microphones, and headphones, as well as some other things. But, please keep in mind that support for anything outside of cameras and SD cards should be considered a bonus. The iPad Camera Connection Kit is $29.99 on Amazon.