If there’s any category synonymous with the holiday season, it’s tech gifts, with the end of the year offers an opportune time to upgrade from outdated and tired to version 2.0 wired. Big or small, affordable or a splurge, we’ve gathered a selection of tech devices and accessories below celebrating great design topped with a fashionable finish designed to blend into your home and lifestyle.
Bang & Olufsen Beosound Balance Speaker \\\ $2,250
Benjamin Hubert of British design agency Layer worked in collaboration with the Danish audio brand to design a sculptural, wireless audio speaker “inspired by interior objects”. Equalizing high design and even higher performance, an omni-directional array of speakers sits atop a beautifully crafted wood base housing an up-firing woofer – stunning design with even more impressive performance that does an astounding job of aiming and encompassing listeners with audio matching its namesake.
Casely Phone Cases + Accessories \\\ from $25
From minimalist looks to vibrant statement pieces, Casely offers over 150+ designs with a style for everyone on your holiday gift-giving list. The Bold Collection offers ultra-protective cases, while the Power 2.0 Collection offers on-the-go battery life. The best part: 5% of net profits are donated to their charity of the month. Give back and get the perfect stocking stuffer for your loved ones.
SUM Drop & Dock Wireless Charger \\\ $215
The newest wireless charger from Sum Products allows you to redefine the charging experience by taking your charger with you wherever you go – whether it’s out to a restaurant, by the pool or even the comfort of your living room – all without a single cable required. The DROP wireless charger features a glowing LED ring that breathes to show you when your device is charging, and can be easily recharged by setting it on the DOCK charging accessory. Keep this unique device on your desk or nightstand and even plug in your iPad and Apple Watch if you’d like. Experience the ultimate charging experience from Sum.
Apple HomePod mini \\\ $99
The new HomePod mini’s size and price make this a tempting impulse purchase, especially since its “put it anywhere” design arrives with simple to setup integration within the Apple ecosystem. Apple has fine tuned the 360‑degree speaker to sound a lot bigger than its 3.3 inches tall silhouette, and the new Intercom feature is a real reason to buy them in multitudes so everyone can keep in touch under the same roof from different rooms.
Aero Mini Lux Charger \\\ $75
Since we’re on the topic of small devices, here’s another one with the “mini” moniker which we think would make for an excellent stocking stuffer to throw in as a +1 alongside a new phone for the holidays – a multifunctional charger that somehow offers two USB ports for simultaneous two device charging in a sleek and compact plug-in dial design.
LG GX Gallery Design 65″ 4K Smart OLED \\\ $2,600
If you haven’t upgraded your TV in the last five or more years, you’re in for an eye-opening treat if you upgrade to an OLED TV. All you need to know are OLEDs are capable of producing accurate and true cinematic blacks with a gorgeous 4K picture. That means you won’t see those annoying splotches of dark gray where the inky depth of black was intended. LG has become the de facto standard for the technology, with their GX Gallery sets their most minimalist expression of the technology – super thin with nearly non-existent bezels intended to be hung up like a work of art (and in fact, it will display works of art as a screensaver). Pair it with the perfectly matching LG Sound Bar GX with Dolby Atmos and you’ll have a fully immersive home viewing experience.
Pro-Ject Debut Carbon EVO \\\ $499
Pro-Ject is the turntable brand we most recommend to first time buyers because their catalog seems to always hit the right note between accessibility and performance. You can geek out to details like the Debut Carbon EVO’s carbon fiber tonearm and decoupled DC belt drive motor, both which will please discerning vinyl listeners, but their latest turntable is plug-and-play simplicity that allows anyone to grow into their passion for listening to music on wax. That the turntable is available in nine different finishes is also a bonus.
Artiphon Orba \\\ $99
We think the best design is one that doesn’t require too much explanation to get started using and exploring. The handheld Orba definitely fit the bill of an object that rewards curiosity. About the size of an orange, the musical instrument works as a handheld synth, looper and MIDI controller, making it an excellent gift for an inspiring musician or even a child showing musical promise. Most of all, like all great design, the Orba is just plain fun to play around with.
Oakywood Headphone Stand \\\ $59
Maybe you’re like us and using noise canceling headphones on the daily for blocking out distractions while WFH. While we’ve got recommendations for headphones as gifts, we also think having a designated and safe spot to keep your headphones is never a bad idea. Oakywood’s faceted wood base stand is a warmly contemporary option – a little bit country, a little bit rock ‘n roll in style – and also handcrafted in either oak or walnut.
MI Square Pocket Speaker \\\ $59
We’ve always harbored a love for old pocket watches, and this small little number offers a similar spirited design and personifies truly portable audio, delivering 3-6 hours of Bluetooth wireless audio playback in just a 3-inch square design.
TROVA GO+plus \\\ $219
A modern day stash box, the Trova Go+plus is designed to combine a handsome but indiscreet exterior case with the security of an app-based biometric lock that offers a safe place to store whatever you can fit into its 6.1” X 3″ X 1.6” confines. Parents with curious children will appreciate being gifted one to safely keep valuables (or edibles) safely away from prying eyes and hands.
If you’re still undecided or haven’t found the right gift, there’s one universal gift that is well-liked by friends, family, colleagues, and kids alike: the Design Milk gift card. Let your recipient pick out something for themselves from our shop. We’re sure that they’ll find something they didn’t even know they wanted.
Check out the rest of the 2020 Gift Guides here!
Give Modern. Give The Best.
From a Beast Blender and cult-favorite portable candlelight to puzzles and retro classic keyboards, the Design Milk editors have curated the best of the best modern holiday gifts for 2021.