The holiday season is once again upon us, and for a couple of years, I’ve written up entire holiday gift guides to help you with your buying decisions. But not this year. This year, I thought it’d be cool to enlist the help of some of my tech friends who also happen to be some of your favorite creators.
For this collaboration, I asked them to suggest a device from five categories that they think would make a great gift this holiday season. Of course, I also have my own recommendations, and over five different articles, you’ll get to read them all.
This article will focus on our favorite wearable pieces of tech. We’re talking smartwatches, smart glasses – anything you can strap onto your body. Enjoy!
Juan Carlos Bagnell: Focals by North
The Apple Watch is hands down the best smartwatch on the market. We can hope that Google will figure out a competitive strategy after buying Fitbit. But what if I told you that outside of fitness tracking, the “smart” features on your watch are woefully out of date? Apple won’t have AR glasses until 2023, but you could already be using a wearable heads up display. The Focals are the most discrete option to present all of your phone notifications and navigation at eye level. Considering every product I reviewed in 2019, these felt the most futuristic and the most disruptive. You can wait for bigger companies to catch up, offer less functionality, and charge more. Or you could be wearing Focals today.
Buy Focals by North: starting at $599
Hayato Huseman: Apple Watch Series 5
There are some decent options on the Android side, but none of them come close to being as full-featured as the Apple Watch. I don’t love the UI or even the design, but it has great health features and a huge variety of accessories and watch straps.
Buy Apple Watch Series 5: starting at $399
TK Bay: Samsung Galaxy Buds
Samsung Galaxy buds are by far one of my favorite in-ear headphones. They provide good audio, long playback times, and great wireless connection to your smartphone be it an Android or iOS device.
Buy Samsung Galaxy Buds: $129.99
Max Weinbach: Samsung Galaxy Watch Active2 44mm
The Watch Active2 44mm is the best watch I’ve used. It has a great value and works with any (modern-ish) phone on the market, iOS or Android. It has everything you’ll want and need while not looking like a small phone on your wrist.
Buy Samsung Galaxy Watch Active2: starting at $229.99
Me: Apple Watch Series 3
Hayato may have recommended the much newer Series 5, but for this list, I’m going with the 2017 Apple Watch Series 3. Why? Because for the holiday season this year, it’s gonna be discounted like crazy. Apple has started selling it for $199 by itself, and other retailers have listed it at $129 for Black Friday. That’s an insanely good price for a smartwatch that’s plenty capable. You won’t get the fancy bezel-less screen, EKG recorder, or always-on display, but it’ll still serve you well if what you want is a nice smartwatch.