Great Grad Gifts for Techies

By Phill Powell

It’s that time of year again, when young graduates’ thoughts turn to the super-cool gifts they hope to receive from well-wishers.

Fortunately, thanks to online shopping, buying presents for techies has never been easier. (At least, not until robot drones deliver packages!) We’ve rounded up a bunch of can’t-miss gift suggestions, any of which should make you an instant hero at the awesome graduation parties you’ll no doubt be invited to.

TOP GIFTS FOR GRADS

Apple Watch™
Apple_Watch_featuresLike everybody else, graduates can’t help desiring the new Apple Watch, which not only shows you the time, but encourages you to make the most of it, too.

Manufacturer: Apple®
Suggested Retail Price: $349-$17,000
Why It Rocks: Let’s face it: There is no hotter consumer item presently available than the Apple Watch. Apple’s long-promised smartwatch synchs up with the Apple iPhone to deliver amazing apps that cover everything from entertainment to productivity enhancement.

True, they’re not cheap…with prices starting at $350 and leaping all the way to $17K…but the Apple Watch is one gorgeous pieces of wearable design, and hey, isn’t the grad on your list worth it?

PlayStation 4™
PS4_console_controllerToday’s hottest game system, Sony’s PlayStation 4, makes an incredible graduation gift.

Manufacturer: Sony™
Suggested Retail Price: $399
Why It Rocks: Have some compassion. The grad on your list has been hitting the books endlessly (and probably learning programming) in their successful attempt to get out of school.

They deserve some quality gaming down time, and any gamer worth their salt will go crazy when you give them a PlayStation 4. If graduation is about dreams coming true, you can make them happen by showing up with the mighty PS4 box.

Beats™ Headphones
Beats_headphones_trioLooking sharp, sounding great: Beats headphones deliver high-tech fashion style with a highly engineered sound experience complete with extra bass.

Manufacturer: Beats by Dre™
Suggested Retail Price: $199 and up
Why They Rock: Today, fashion includes the audio accessories you wear, and the Beats line of headphones is considered essential gear among those in the know. The sharp-looking line was pioneered by Rap producer extraordinaire Dr. Dre, in conjunction with super-producer Jimmy Iovine.

The Beats headphones line is known for having an extended deep end that’s able to deliver the bass-heavy sonic booms now preferred by many music production geniuses.

Netflix® Subscription
Netflix_giftThe greatest deal in entertainment? That’s an easy one…

Manufacturer: Netflix, Inc.
Suggested Retail Price: $7.99-$12/month
Why It Rocks: Meet the greatest single value in entertainment. For a mere $8 to $12 bucks a month (depending on how many concurrent streams you want), the special grad on your shopping list can watch all the movies, TV shows and other video content they can stand. This is the future that was always promised: the instant watching of movies enabled by the press of a button, without even having to download the movie first.

And what movies! Netflix is a treasure chest with no bottom, an endless supply of video entertainment that adds new titles month after month. (Current tally: 9,796 titles.) And now Netflix also means great shows made especially for streaming video, such as the new Daredevil series.

MacBook®
Macbook_USB_C_portThe new Macbook makes more efficient use of space, thanks to its new USB-C port.

Manufacturer: Apple
Suggested Retail Price: $1,299-$1,599
Why It Rocks: Sometimes less is more. Exhibit A: The latest Macbook, featuring a newly streamlined design that’s slimmer (at 13.1 mm), lighter (at 2 lb.) and equipped with a 12-inch Retina display to serve as the next evolutionary step in laptop computing. The real story with this latest version is its use of the new USB-C port, instead of the traditional USB ports.

Apple says it’s only a third of the size of USB ports, and is a much more efficient and centralized approach to charging and data transfer. Other enhancements include a 9-hour battery life and an Intel Core M processor that runs on only 5 watts of power and helps the MacBook produce so little heat that it doesn’t even need a computer fan.

YOUR SUMMER PLANS?

Graduation marks the end of school and the beginning of a student’s future in the real world. If you’re still figuring out who you want to be, consider spending part of this summer at a Digital Media Academy tech camp, where you can explore today’s hottest tech subjects and courses like app development, robotics and music production. No matter what you dream of creating, DMA can show you how to make it happen, at any one of the great DMA tech camp locations across the U.S. and Canada.