HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE: Cheap But Awesome Gifts Under $150

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Forget the diamond ring! This guide will help you find that special geek in your life something they will love, and all for under $150.

Kindle – From $99kindle_paperwhite

I know, it’s totally the default gift, but Kindle’s are great. And all the work Amazon’s been doing for their Australian Kindle Store means the Kindle is here to stay. So pick one up, the default Kindle starts at $99, and you can even get a Paperwhite for $159 inside Dick Smith stores. Plus if you love audiobooks Whispersync now even lets you go from book to audiobook seamlessly.

Pebble – US$125

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Another geeky present, but the Pebble is pretty damn fancy. You might be running out of time in terms of shipping the Pebble from the US, but still if you can find one locally the Pebble is still probably the best smartwatch on the market. You can control music, check notifications, check off items on your Evernote lists, and set the watchface to anything you want. Plus it’s got a killer battery life. But make sure your loved one isn’t just going to buy an Apple Watch or Android Wear device, because both could potentially be more futureproof.

Digital Subscription – <$130

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This is another tricky one, but still, a subscription can be a great gift that keeps on giving. Mostly, though, you’d want to give this to someone who you know will want it.

For instance, you don’t want to force a $12.99 monthly subscription on someone who won’t want to resubscribe. But it’s perfect if you have someone who wouldn’t mind a gifted year of Office 365, Evernote, Spotify, Audible, PlayStation Plus, Xbox Live, or something else. And it can save them a small fortune.

Or, alternatively, just gift some credit, like a Xbox Store card, or an iTunes card, both gifting essentials for the person who has it all.

A FitBit – From $130 (for the Flex)

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I’ve been testing the Fitbit Charge for a few weeks now and it’s totally reminded me how great a Fitbit is. While the Flex doesn’t have a screen, it definitely will keep you on your toes with your New Years Resolution, with social features, step counting, and even sleep tracking. Plus it syncs with your smart phone, meaning your data can be looked at in detail. On the other hand, the slightly more expensive Fitbit Charge will automatically track your sleep, your daily climbs up stairs, and also provides a clock, and a lot more visual feedback. Either way you can’t go wrong.

Bonus Splurge: PlayStation TV – From $150

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The PlayStation TV is a strange beast, but it still has some awesome niche qualities. For instance, say you love a particular PS1 game, like Crash Team Racing, and want to play 4 player games at a party. Or maybe you want to play a PlayStation Vita game on the big screen, like Persona 4 Golden. The PlayStation TV can do all that, and a little bit more, for just $150 (excluding the price of the controller). Plus there’s still a tonne of great indie games coming to it every week, all available from the PlayStation Store.

I made this a bonus gift because it does definitely have some flaws. The base price doesn’t include a controller or a memory card, but assuming you have a PS4 or PS3 your Sony controllers will work with this out of the box. The memory card is a bit of a more difficult situation, though you can buy a small one and just juggle around your favourite games.

In terms of compatibility, you won’t be able to find every PS1 game, and you won’t be able to play quite a few Vita games, such as Tearaway or LittleBigPlanet, but at the same time it is a great retro, or indie game station, and it’s smaller than an Apple TV. Built for awesome, drop-in-your-backpack party games for your next failed camping trip or holiday, screen not included.