2018 Groove Management Techie Gift Buyers Guide

As someone who loves technology, gadgets and home automation I consider myself an early adopter.  For the past several years I have published an annual holiday gift guide.  The curated list of items range in price from under $10 to $2,000.  There is something for the technology lover in your life at every budget. Happy shopping!

The titles for each item are hyperlinks to purchase the items online.  As you will see most are linked to Amazon.com because they offer the best pricing and availability. Prices may have changed since the time of publication.

Yale Assure Touchscreen Smart Lock with Z-wave - $202.00 (Click Titles for links)

Keys are so 1990. With the Yale touchscreen lock you will never need a key again. Lock and unlock your door using the backlit keypad, or through your smart home system! Create and manage up to 250 unique pin codes to share with people you trust.  You can set specific days and times that codes work, remotely manage the codes, remotely lock and unlock the door and get alerts when someone opens or closes your door. The lock works with Smartthings, Amazon Alexa and Google Home. Purchase Here

Garmin Fenix 5X Plus Smartwatch- $699.99

This is the ultimate fitness tracking, music playing smartwatch.  The Garmin Fenix 5X Plus features onboard mapping, music streaming via Spotify, heartrate monitoring, Garmin Pay, email and text notifications, plus hundreds of downloadable apps and watchfaces. The battery can last up to 20 days in smartwatch mode and 13 horus in GPS mode with music.  This is the watch to have if you are a fitness and outdoor sport enthusiast. With sapphire glass this watch is practically indestructible.  Purchase Here


Saberlight USB Rechargeable Arc Lighter- $16.95

This super cool lighter will never run out of fuel thanks to USB charging.  It is perfect for lighting candles, grills and campfires.  The lighter is splash proof and windproof.  A rechargeable lithium ion battery provides more than 3 hours of use for each hour of charge.  This is the perfect gift for the technology obsessed person in your life.  Purchase Here


MEATER+ Smart Wireless Wifi and Bluetooth Meat Thermometer - $99.00

MEATER+ is the perfect grilling and cooking gadget for the foodie in your life. The new long Range MEATER+ is the first truly wireless, smart meat thermometer that allows you to monitor your food up to 165 ft away. There’s nothing worse than an overdone piece of meat, which is why a reliable meat thermometer is an essential tool for any kitchen or BBQ setup. MEATER+ boasts unique, patented technology that measures both internal meat and ambient temperatures in the oven or grill for a superior result, every time. Also, MEATER+'s companion app sends estimated cook times and alerts to your smartphone over Bluetooth or WiFi, giving you the freedom to step away from the grill and enjoy the party or sit back and relax.  Purchase Here

LED USB Rechargeable Dog Collar- $9.99

Keep your dog safe during night time walks with this LED dog collar. Features a usb rechargeable port for easy and quick recharging. The silicon collar can be cut to fit various dog sized necks. Three light settings include slow flash, quick flash and steady glow. The collar is available in several colors including red, green, pink, and blue. Purchase Here

Tenda Nova Wave Whole Home Wifi Mesh System, 3-Pack- $169.99

With more and more devices on our home networks, we have become reliant upon stronger signals and better connectivity.  The Tenda Mesh Network system can cover a 6,000 sqft home leaving no deadspots.  Plug one unit into the power and your internet modem and the other two modules can be placed on different floors of the home to provide full coverage.  The Tenda is compatible with all major providers including Spectrum, AT&T and Verizon Fios.  The Tenda Wi-fi app includes parental controls and customizable features.  This is a superior solution to a single router.  Purchase Here

Chamberlain MyQ Smart Garage Door Opener- $59.99

Ever leave home and then question whether or not you left the garage door open or not?  With the Chamberlain MyQ you never have to worry about that again.  You can see the status of your garage door from the iPhone or Android app and you can open and close the door remotely.  The app can be set to provide alerts when the door is opened or closed.  The MyQ is compatible with most garage door openers manufactured after 1993.  Purchase Here

Samsung Smartthings Home Automation Hub- $62.99

The Smartthings hub allows you to control lights, locks, sensors, and all other home automation devices via the iPhone or Android App.  Smartthings is compatible with Alexa and Google home and works on Zigbee, Z-Wave and cloud to cloud protocols.  The version 3 hub connects to the home wifi network and does not require an ethernet connect.  Smartthings supports over 500 devices and require no monthly fee.  If you are interested in creating a smart home, the Smartthings hub should be one of your first purchases. The hub allows you to fully automate functions in your house such as outdoor and indoor lighting, monitor smoke detectors, open and close door locks, control holiday lights and more. Each device must be smart home compatible. There are lots of cool smart devices on this list and available at home improvement shops. Purchase Here

Wyze Cam Pan 1080p Pan/Tilt Zoom Smart Home Camera- $37.98

The Wyze camera is an affordable home monitoring and security solution with the features and benefits of cameras costing 5x as much.  The camera provide 110 degree range with 360 degree panning to scan a room.  The image quality is amazing delivering 1080P full HD video and enhanced night vision for dark rooms.  Motion tracking features and audio allow you to experience a room as if you were there.  The camera works with Amazon Alexa and is App controllable on an iPhone or Android phone.  Included is 14 day cloud storage of live video recording.  Purchase Here

Wyze Cam 1080p HD Indoor Wireless Smart Home Camera, Night Vision, 2-Way Audio- $27.98

There is no reason to spend over $100 for a smart home monitoring camera. Wyze Cam v2 delivers fast, clear, live stream footage direct to your smartphone via the Wyze App (iOS and Android), day or night. With motion and sound detection you can receive an alert anytime your Wyze Cam v2 detects sound and motion, and view up to 14 days of saved alert videos for free - no monthly fees or subscription required. Use the Wyze Cam v2’s new Motion Tagging feature to easily identify motion in both live stream and playback video modes.  Skip the fancy Nest cameras and Arlo cameras and buy 8 Wyze cameras for the price of one of those other brands. Purchase Here

SV3C WiFi 1080P Outdoor Security Camera with Night Vision and App Access- $59.99

An affordable and flexible home security solution the SV3C waterproof outdoor camera provide a single wire solution to home security. The camera uses the wire for power only, so it must be mounted within range of an outlet. It transmits signals over Wifi for remote viewing of the camera via Android or iOS app. The camera can accomodate up to 128GB SD card for storage and replay of video. Smart motion sensor can trigger an alarm and send text updates and start recording when motion is sensed. The 36 pcs IR LED lights provide great low light monitoring. The camera can monitor up to 67 ft away. Purchase Here

Amazon Echo Show Home Screen and Speaker featuring Alexa- $179.99

A premium speaker with Dolby sound processing that lets you stream music, books and news in crisp stereo sound. Features a 10.1” HD screen for watching videos, movies, the news and displaying updates. The ultimate alarm clock. The Echo show features Alexa automated assistant with voice prompts to answer questions, fetch information and control smart home connected devices. A great kitchen companion with access to the internet and recipes. A bedroom night table alarm clock that can wake you to your favorite song, news updates or any other customized information you desire. Purchase Here

NVIDIA Shield TV 4K HDR Streaming Media Player- $139.99

Want to make any HDMI capable TV super smart. The NVIDIA Shield outperforms all Rokus, Firesticks and other media streamers. It is a full functioning 4K Android TV box that includes Chromecast 4k. Enjoy Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, and all other streaming services in 4k HDR. Get the most immersive sound with Dolby Atmos and DTS-X surround sound pass-through. With the Shield you can cut the cord for good with TV, DVR adn even live sports events. Controls Amazon Alexa and Google Home devices with the voice enabled remote. Purchase Here

MPOWERD Luci - Inflatable Solar Light $19.95

LED lights are super efficient and provide great light.  The MPowerD Luci lights are solar powered LED lights that are perfect for the backyard, camping or boating.  The affordable lights provide up to 12 hours of light on a single solar powered charge.  The lights can be set to flash or to stay on.  They float as well so they are perfect for in a pool or for on the lake.  We used one on a camping trip last summer as an anchor marker and float for a late night return to our boat mooring.  These lights are super cool and provide great light.  They are sold individually or in multi-packs.  They also come in a more advanced model that has color changing lights.  Here is a link to the Luci Color Changing Lights Purchase Here

 

Roborock S5 Xiaomi Robotic Vacuum and Mop Cleaner  $546.99

The Xiaomi Roborock smart robot vacuum cleaner and mop is the ultimate home cleaning gadget. A huge upgrade from the early model cleaners, it combines vacuuming and mopping. This unit is a generation 3 unit that is truly state of the art. Xiaomi is the Apple electronics giant of China and the Roborock Robot Vacuum is an amazing piece of technology.  This radar controlled vacuum cleaner will clean your entire home with the push of a button. The vacuum can be controlled through the iOS and Android app allowing you to schedule the vacuum to run on specific days and at specific times.  The app allows you to remotely start, stop and control the vacuum.  It also gives you visualization of the areas that have been cleaned.  With the combination of a laser distance scanner and three built in processors, the smart robot vacuum will scan its surroundings and create a route for thorough cleaning. Once the vacuum has completed is cleaning route it will automatically return to its home base.

Once the vacuum reaches a charge lower than 20%, it will automatically return to home base and recharge till 80% then continue on with the unfinished work. The Xiaomi Mi Smart Robot Vacuum Cleaner with App Control has an inbuilt wall sensor feature, this will ensure the robot keeps a distance of 10mm and cleans the edges with a brush, effectively protecting yours skirting and the appearance of the vacuum cleaner.

While there are several other robot vacuum cleaners on the market the Xiaomi get great reviews and is much more affordable than the comparable power rated vacuums from competitors.  Purchase Here

SnapPower GuideLights  (2 Pack) $19.98

This item has been on my gift guide list for the past three years.  It is such a simple solution that provides excellent utility.  SnapPower is an outlet cover that contains three LED lights and a light sensor.  We have installed these covers in hallways and on counters throughout our house.  They provide great night lighting and ambiance in dark conditions.  They consume very little power and take under one minute to install per location.  Such a clever device that makes navigating your house at night safer and easier. SnapPower also makes usb wall plates that are very handy for charging phones and tablets. USB Wall Plate Purchase Here

 

DJI Spark with Remote Control Combo- $339.00

Always wanted a birds eye view? The DJI Spark is the most affordable way to get into the drone and quadcopter game. FlightAutonomy with Obstacle Detection Subject Tracking and GPS based navigation make the DJI Spark easy to fly. With a top speed of 31 mph and up to 16 minutes of flying time the DJI spark can always get the video or images. The range is 1.2 miles. The DJI Spark shoots 12mp still images and can record 1080p video at 30 frames per second. The 2-Axis stabilized gimbal makes for super smooth images. Package Includes DJI Spark Quadcopter 3 pairs of 4730S Quick Release Folding Propellers for Spark Drone DJI Remote Controller for Spark Quadcopter one Intelligent Flight Battery for Spark Quadcopter one Charger one Micro-USB Cable Hard Foam Storage Box Purchase Here

DJI Mavic 2 Zoom- $1,167.00

Looking for a cinematographer level drone that can get amazing shots? The DJI Mavic 2 Zoom is the ultimate drone quadcopter. Taking all of DJI’s industry leading knowledge and design this second generation drone is a big upgrade over the original DJI Mavic Pro that I fly. Featuring 31 minutes of flight time, 44 mph maximum speed and amazing tracking features. The camera is a big upgrade as it includes a 24-48mm optical zoom lens with up to four-times zoom capability. The Mavic 2 Zoom has obstacle avoidance sensors on the front and back of the drone making it almost impossible to crash. Package includes Mavic 2 Zoom, Intelligent Flight Battery, Gimbal Protector, Remote Controller, 3x Propellers (Pair), Battery Charger, Power Cable, Communication Cable (USB3.0 Type-C), USB Adapter, Spare Control Sticks (Pair), RC Cable (Lightning connector), RC Cable (Standard Micro USB connector), RC Cable (USB Type-C connector). Purchase Here

Hisense 55” 4K UHD Android TV with HDR - $599

What holiday tech list would not be complete without at least on television. The Hisense 55” 4K TV is an awesome bargain. At $599 it competes with Samsung and Sony TVs costing more than twice as much. Running Android TV, this smart TV does it all. With access to Google assistant and the Google Play store there are an unlimited number of apps to choose from. The image quality on this 4k TV is outstanding. Featuring exclusive ULED technology, Wide Color Gamut, Dolby Vision HDR, and Motion Rate 240 on top of one-of-a-kind apps and features, the H9 Plus is a striking example of how Hisense offers cutting edge tech that combines an incredible picture with an incredible price. Online reviews say this is the TV to get if you want a top quality smart TV for under $1,000. Purchase Here

LG 34” UltraWide Computer Monitor - $296.00

Are you a gamer or someone who is the ultimate multitasker on the computer? The LG 34” UltraWide monitor is an outstanding display that is HDR10 compatible for the highest quality output. the 21:9 IPS monitor has great color reproduction. With so much work space one can have three or more side by side documents open. I use this monitor for work daily. It allows me to have my email, a web browser and a document open all at the same time. If you are really wanting the best, consider the upgraded version which features a curved display. LG 34” Curved Display for $549.99 Purchase Here

Xiaomi Earbud In-Ear Pro HD Headphones- $36.69

Want an amazing pair of noise isolating headphones that perform way above their price point. Check out the Xiaomi Silger Pro HD in ear headphones. They include an in wire remote and mic for phone calls and music control. The headphones come in a intelligently designed case that includes three different size silicone ear buds. The sounds quality from these headphones will blow you away. Better sound reproduction than any pair of beats and on par with Bose for a fraction of the price, plus the portability make these a winner. A great holiday gift for the audiophile in your life. Purchase Here

 

YEELIGHT Smart Wifi LED Light Strip $22.19

LED lights provide great low energy lighting.  This six foot long light strip can be mounted under a counter, behind a tv, along a wall or along any flat surface.  The six foot long light strip contains LED lights that can produce 16mm colors.  The lights can be turned on or off using the included switch or they can be controlled via a smartphone app.  The app allows for setting timers, adjusting the colors, linking the colors to a weather app and more.  Wake in the morning to blue for blue skys or red for rain.  You decide.  The color can change to music and all of this can be controlled by Amazon Alexa or other smart hubs.  A super cool gift for kids and adults alike.  Purchase Here

Xiaomi M365 Bird Electric Scooter - $449.00

Cities all around the world are catching the scooter craze. With Lime and Bird scooters you have the power to go the last mile, but why pay per use when you can own your own electric scooter. The Xiaomi M365 is the same scooter that Bird uses. [EXTREMELY FAST AND LONG-RANGE BATTERY LIFE] - A 250W motor propels the e-scooter to a max speed of 15.5 MPH. High capacity battery with a maximum travel range of up to 18.6 miles under specific conditions. [PORTABLE FOLDING DESIGN] -Weighs just 26.9 lbs. Portable folding design for easy storage at home or hand carry when necessary.The sturdy frame is made of aerospace-grade aluminum. [INTELLIGENT DESIGN]-The minimal yet modern design of Mi Electric Scooter has been awarded the prestigious Red Dot "Best of the Best" Award, as well as the iF Design Award 2017. Includes a cool app that lets you view your current speed, remaining power and other real-time riding stats. Purchase Here

NSD Power Gyroscopic Wrist and Forearm Exerciser- $42.69

Ever wanted a stronger grip and better forearm strength.  This self powered exercise device is super cool. The compact device that can be used anywhere will burn fat and get rid of flabby arms. It may help prevent and relieve repetitive stress induced injuries like carpel tunnel syndrome, tendonitis and RS.  No batteries or external power required.  The gyroscope provides the power and there is an lcd counter to keep track of your progress.  A great stress reliever as well. Purchase Here

GoofBoard Classic, Surfing Balance Board- $179.00

Shaped like a surfboard with a nose and a tail. And, with the GoofBoard's unique rail-to-rail motion, the rider's body and mind are positioned for a true surfing vibe that rocking saucers cannot match. Deck made from 15mm birch plywood. Roller made from environmentally friendly recycled materials, strong, sturdy and 100% straight. Ride on carpet. This is an excellence core and balance trainer whether you are a surfer or just want to work on your overall balance and fitness. Purchase Here

Blitzart Electric Skateboard Single Motor or Dual    $189-$399

Electric mobility is all the rage.  An electric skateboard is fun and a practical green form of transportation.  The Blitzart electric skateboards run on the latest Lithium Ion battery technology (Not the type that catches on fire).   Blitzart offers three versions of the board starting at $189 for the entry level board and going up to $499 for the GT version.  All boards are charged by a USB charger and the board speed is controlled by an included bluetooth remote controller.  Range is between 4 miles and 12 miles per charge depending on the board and the riding conditions.  Top speed ranges fro 10 mph to 22 mph.  The mid level board for $289 is a great long board that has excellent specs.  Those familiar with electric skateboards may know of the Boosted Board which costs four times more.  Blitzart build a high quality board at a great price and offers excellent customer service.  Blitzart Mini Flash $189, Blitzart Tornado $299 and Blitzart Tornado GT $499 Purchase Here

Slingshot 2019 Hover Glide Foil Wakesurf Fwake complete board and foil- $1,942.00

Ever wanted to soar above the water and have the feeling of flying? With the Slingshot Foil board you can. This is the ultimate water toy which will challenge your skills in new ways. The 2019 Hover Glide FWake package is equipped with Complete FOIL Package with (2 Masts (18" mast & 24" mast), Front Gamma 68 Wing & Rear Stabilizer 42cm Wing, Pedestal and Standard Fuselage, Padded Foil Protective Cover/Travel Bag, All Hardware. This is one of the most versatile foils in our line. Its size and surface area provide the lift and stability needed. FEATURES: ReEngineered Carbon Construction - Lighter, More Range & More Efficient Large, Low-Aspect Wing has tons of Lift & Stability HYDROFOIL PACKAGE DESIGNED FOR BEHIND-THE-BOAT RIDING USE WITH ANY BOAT (OR JETSKI) RIDE IN ANY CONDITIONS, FLOAT SMOOTHLY ABOVE ROUGH WATER FLAT-LOC FUSE-TO-WING CONNECTION BRINGS A COMPLETELY NEW SENSATION TO WAKEBOARDING DURABLE & AFFORDABLE FOILING FLIGHT SCHOOL COMPATIBLE MODULAR (LIMITLESS BUILD/SPORT OPTIONS) BREAKS DOWN QUICKLY FOR EASY STORAGE Purchase Here

Rachio Version 3 Smart Sprinkler Controller  $189.99

Are you one of those people who have their lawn irrigation systems running in the rain?  Shame on you.  Wasting money and damaging the environment.  A green lawn is the goal of most homeowners, but at what price.  With the cost of water on the rise, Americans are finding that maintaining a green lawn can come at a very high price. Land irrigation accounts for about 37% of all fresh water usage in the United States according to the USGS.  With water restrictions becoming more prevalent throughout the US, water conservation is becoming more and more important.  So how can technology improve our watering efficiency?  Enter Rachio's Iro smart sprinkler controller.  This home sprinkler controller replaces your existing controller not the system.  It links to you home router and wifi network to provide remote access to the system and real time weather monitoring.  Rachio gets street level weather data and can not only stop watering if it is raining but adjust depending on whether their is rain in the forecast or if it rained last night.  This device will pay for itself within one season.  It can be programmed for different lawn conditions as well by zone. Additional versions available include Rachio V3 16 zones for $279 and the Version 2 for $149. Purchase Here

Xiaomi Short Throw Laser Projector- $2,099.98

Project up to 150” on a wall or screen in your home in daylight conditions with the Xiaomi Laser Projector. This smart TV includes Android TV for streaming of Netflix, Hulu, YouTube and other streaming services in high definition. What makes this projector special is the ability to get a 100” picture with the projector only 17” from the wall. The laser provides up to 25,000 hours of use and is so bright it works great in daylight conditions. Built in speakers provide excellent sounds quality and the smart bluetooth remote does not require line of sight to work. This is an amazing home theater projector that can be moved from room to room and even used outside for backyard movie night. Purchase Here

Magnet-Automatic Beer Bottle Opener - $6.99

A cool way to impress your friends as you open their beer or soda bottles. This bottle opener has a unique mechanism that pops the bottle cap when you push down. A magnet makes certain to retain the bottle cap. A cool party gift for the beer lover in your life.

 

If you buy items from this list, please share your experience with me and also share this list with others in your network.  Your comments are welcome below if you have suggested items to add to the list.

Happy Holidays!