My dad always said the same thing when I asked him what he wanted for Christmas. "I don't want anything," he'd say. So I had to guess. For 40 years he's gotten golf balls, ties, hats and assorted gadgets for the garage.
Now that I'm a dad I can let you in on a little secret: We do want something for Christmas.
What do dads want? Here are some of my favorite tech things of the year made especially for dad:
Power is the name of the game for dad gifts, and a Goal Zero heavy duty power pack will light up their morning and many of the things they'll take camping or tailgating. The Yeti portable power stations come in all sizes. Larger Yetis can power TVs and refrigerators. Just charge it up at an electrical outlet before you leave. Or add a solar panel to keep it charged in the outdoors.
prices range from $200 to $1400.
A portable car battery jump starter should be in every car. Charge it at home and they'll jump off a battery in an emergency. FlyHi makes a number of portable battery charges that are powerful enough to jump off a dead car battery or diesel engine. The FlyHi jump starter I tried is the size of a smartphone. It also has USB plugs to charge phones. These start out at around $50.
Want to give your dad something no other dad will get this Christmas? Sunglasses from GoVision have a high-def video camera mounted right between the eyes. Video quality is fantastic. Some sets have Bluetooth for live streaming and are water resistant. GoVision sunglasses are selling out fast at Amazon for around $150.
A Bluetooth headset doesn't have to look stupid. The Plantronics Voyager headsets are small enough to not draw attention. I've surprised how comfortable these are. Totally hands free, when a call comes in, it tells you who's calling and asks if you want to accept the call. The battery lasts for days. For the busy dad a Bluetooth headset makes perfect sense for the office. These quality headsets start at around $50.
The Weber iGrill will make your dad the coolest dad at the grill next summer. It comes with a set of probes that you insert into the beef or chicken. Set how you like it, rare, medium, well done or anywhere in between and iGrill will send a notification to the phone when it has reached the desired internal temperature.
The biggest hit Christmas morning could be a remote controlled paper airplane. The POWERUP Smartphone Controlled Paper Airplane will fly for approximately 10 minutes on a single charge. Some have video cameras for live streaming the flight and some can be controlled by dad just by tilting his head while wearing a headset which shows dad the view from the cockpit. The POWERUP airplanes were a big hit on Kickstarter and are now available online at an Amazon. Prices start at $50.
These cool tech gadgets aren't just for geeky dads. Take your pick and watch your dad geek out a bit Christmas morning.