The Holiday season can be hectic when trying to find the time - and money - to buy your loved ones a tech gift they’ll actually enjoy using. Perhaps you’re running on a low budget while simultaneously looking to impress your tech-savvy friend, family member or coworker with a new gadget.
We've loosened the budget a little bit this year, as there are some great value items available for just over £10 that we didn't want to miss out on including.
Audio equipment takes centre stage in our round-up, but also look for some smart home products and wireless tech.
1. Betron B750s
The Betron B750s are our favourite ultra-cheap earphones. Their unassuming design (unless you get the red model of course) is typical of affordable in-ear audio, but sound quality anything but.
These are the sort of thing you can easily replace when lost or damaged, too.
They can't be compared to more expensive headphones, but at under £15 they are a bargain. Amazon also periodically holds lightning sales, so keep an eye out for further discounts.
It's important to note that they connect to your device via 3.5mm jack, so you might need an adaptor for them to work with modern handsets.
If you're looking for an alternative, the wired earphones that come included with Samsung phones are even less expensive when bought on their own.
2. Betron A3 Wireless Speaker
Beltron are producing some great audio equipment for a ridiculously cheap price. This pint-sized Bluetooth speaker is great for portability, and while it might not deliver room-filling audio it should be more than good enough for casual usage.
You can use this connected to the mains or on-the-go, thanks to a built-in 500mAh battery, which should provide a good few hours of play time. If you want to save battery even more, the included 3.5mm AUX cable will give a similar wired experience.
There's even a built-in microphone, which allows you to skip tracks and play/pause using your voice.This isn't a full virtual assistant, but we can't be greedy when it offers so much for such little money.
An LED light means you'll never be left in the dark as to what this speaker is offering.
You can buy it now for £12.99, but as a UK-based brand you'll have to import it to the US.
3. Bawoo WiFi Smart Bulb
It's great to see how affordable smart bulbs have become, and Bawoo's offering provides many of the features seen on more expensive products.
Compatible with Alexa and Google smart speakers, this bulb can display up to 16 million colours wherever it is installed. Set-up via the companion app is simple too, and at such a low price you can easily link multiple bulbs together.
It's particularly effective with conditional routines, thanks to the built in IFTTT integration (see How to use IFTTT with Google Home)
You can buy it now for £7.99, from where it can also be imported to the US.
4. Precision Alarm Clock
Who doesn't need an alarm clock? While many of us use a phone or smart speaker to wake us up, the traditional bedside clock can't be beaten for reliability.
Argos own brand Precision adds lots of information to the traditional LED display, including ambient temperature, date and day of the week.
Although powered by batteries, the time on this clock updates automatically, so you won't have to fiddle around changing it twice a year.
The display can be illuminated by pressing a button on top for easy checking of the time at night.
You can buy it now for £9.99.
5. Anker Wireless Charging Pad
We've been fans of Anker's charging gear for a while now, and this wireless charging pad offers great value for money.
This pad supports the Qi standard, so it will work with any Samsung flagship since 2015 and iPhone from 2017 or newer.
Its understated design should help it blend into your home, while Anker claims it will remain much cooler than other wireless chargers.
Sure, wireless chargers are typically slower than a wired connection, but the convenience is surely worth the trade-off.
6. Fidget Spinner by REENUO
Though not the most complex of inventions, Fidget Spinners took off as a captivating new gadget that both kids and adults can enjoy. The craze stems from the device’s ability to relieve stress, kill time and enhance attention span for those who may struggle to keep focused.
Besides being a fun toy to play with in your spare time, fidget spinners have been proven effective in reducing side effects of stress, anxiety, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
The best part? These gadgets are inexpensive, and you can purchase them essentially anywhere. You can buy our pick on Amazon for £6.99.
7. Interactive alphabet learner by LeapFrog
It seems only right to include a tech gift that serves a deeper purchase then making our lives easier or providing entertainment. The Interactive Alphabet Learner is one of LeapFrog’s many educational products that help young children learn basics, such as the alphabet.
Your child will be excited to sing along to alphabet songs, play letter matching games, learn phonics and more. The set of letter flash cards is equipped with extra online activities that enhance the learning experience of users.
Not only will children enjoy playing with the colourful, interactive cards, but they will also increase their knowledge and understanding of the English alphabet.
The LeapFrog cards require the LeapReader Junior Book Pal to work, but once you've got that you can add lots of additional games and packs to your collection.
8. iNNEXT Gamepad Joystick
Plug these controllers right into your computer’s USB port for access to a wealth of Super Nintendo Entertainment System games.
The Gamepad Joystick is the perfect gift for gamers who are always on the go. Whether in a hotel or coffee shop, the portable controllers allow users to play wherever, whenever.
No extra driver is needed - just connect the controller to your computer and enjoy. The Gamepad Joystick is compatible with PCs and MACs and supports Windows 98 SE and above and MAC OS X 10.2.8 and above.