The best gifts for grads under $50 | Engadget

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Gifting will be tough at any time, but it surely’s been notably laborious over the previous yr. Budgets stay tight, however you continue to need to give that grad in your life one thing that may assist make the transition to post-school life a bit simpler (and extra enjoyable). The tech gifts that come to thoughts instantly — iPhones, smartwatches, sport consoles and the like — usually are not precisely budget-friendly. But there are helpful devices on the market that received’t drain your pockets fully. Here’s Engadget’s record of the best tech gifts under $50 for new graduates.

Anker PowerPort III Nano Charger PIQ 3.0 USB-C charger


A spare charger is usually a lifesaver and Anker’s PowerPort III Nano is a superb one for people who have new smartphones. Although it was designed as a substitute for Apple’s personal 20W charger for the most recent iPhones, it’ll work simply as properly with Samsung’s newest handsets, too. It helps quick charging for each iPhones and Galaxy gadgets, and you need to use it to offer speedy power-ups to most different USB-C cellular gadgets. Not solely is it roughly half the scale of Apple’s charger, but it surely’s additionally barely cheaper as properly.

Buy PowerPort III Nano at Amazon – $17

Aukey 2-in-1 wi-fi charging stand

Aukey 2-in-1 wireless charging stand


Aukey’s 2-in-1 wireless charging stand is a superb addition to a nightstand or a piece desk. It can cost as much as two gadgets concurrently: one smartphone and one different Qi-compatible system on the flat, again panel. Apple lovers will discover their AirPods match completely again there, but it surely’ll cost up non-Apple earbuds, too. Aukey’s compact stand is rated for 10W quick charging for Samsung gadgets and seven.5W quick charging for iPhones. Plus it helps smartphone instances as much as 3mm so that you don’t should take away yours earlier than you employ it.

Buy Aukey 2-in-1 charging stand at Amazon – $30

Google Chromecast with Google TV

Aa Chromecast with Google TV plugged into the back of a TV.


Whether they’re nonetheless mooching off their dad and mom’ subscriptions, or have lastly sprung for their very own Netflix account a streaming system is a superb reward for a current grad. The newest Chromecast with Google TV makes the unique Chromecast expertise a lot better by including a bodily distant to the combo, together with the brand new Google TV interface. The distant makes it simpler to navigate and the on-screen menus, and the software program will serve up TV and film suggestions based mostly on subscriptions you’ve. The Chromecast with Google TV helps companies together with Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, HBO Max and extra, and it’ll stream in 4K HDR with Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos. Plus, you’ll be able to nonetheless solid much more content material out of your smartphone or pill to your TV.

Buy Chromecast with Google TV at Best Buy – $50

8Bitdo Pro 2

An overview photo of the 8BitDo Pro 2 gaming controller lined up neatly next to a variety of compatible game platforms.


We’ve been followers of 8Bitdo’s inexpensive, multi-platform controllers for fairly a while, and the brand new, $50 Pro 2 is not any exception. You can use it with the Nintendo Switch and on Windows, macOS, Android and Raspberry Pi, and also you’re in a position to map capabilities to buttons utilizing its companion smartphone app. The Pro 2 additionally provides new bumper buttons under every arm, one thing the earlier model didn’t have. In normal, 8Bitdo’s controllers are extra ergonomic than, say, counting on a keyboard and mouse when enjoying PC video games. They’re additionally a dramatic enchancment over the Switch’s Joy-Cons which, if we’re trustworthy, aren’t essentially the most comfy controllers to make use of for lengthy stretches of time. The Pro 2 expenses up by way of USB-C, however you too can take away the battery pack and change it with AA batteries if you already know you received’t be capable to cost up regularly.

Buy 8Bitdo Pro 2 at Amazon – $50

RavPower 16,750mAh transportable charger

RAVPower 16,750mAh portable charger


A transportable changer is actually a present that retains on giving and RavPower’s 16,750mAh brick is robust sufficient to cost up smartphones and tablets alike. That’s sufficient to prime off your iPhone 11 Pro Max 2.5 occasions or an iPad Air as soon as. It has two iSmart output ports so you’ll be able to energy up two gadgets concurrently, and its indicator lights offers you an thought of the brick’s remaining energy degree. Even with a larger-than-average capability it’s surprisingly compact, measuring 5 x 3.15 x .9 inches, and its built-in flashlight may also help you discover misplaced objects in a pinch.

Buy RavPower portable charger at Amazon – $37

Tile Pro tracker

A woman's bag on the passenger seat of a car has a Tile Pro hooked onto its strap.


Sure, many smartphones have a way of monitoring them down should you’ve misplaced them — however what about all the different essential objects in your life? That’s the place Tile’s Pro Bluetooth tracker is available in — simply clip it onto your keys, pockets, backpack or anything and also you’ll be capable to hold observe of these objects utilizing the Tile cellular app. It’ll present you the newest location of your merchandise and, should you’re inside 400-feet you can also make it ring loudly so you will discover your misplaced stuff. We just like the Tile Pro’s tiny dimension, water resistant design and replaceable battery — the cell included with the tracker will final for one yr earlier than you’ll be able to change it your self, one thing you weren’t in a position to do on older Tile fashions. Apple lovers might need to take a look at the corporate’s new AirTags, however these will solely connect with iOS gadgets whereas Tile trackers work with each iOS and Android.

Buy Tile Pro at Amazon – $35

Logitech Pebble

The Logitech Pebble mouse in light blue sitting on a desk next to a keyboard.


Whether your grad will commute to their first workplace job or earn a living from home, a wi-fi mouse is a must have when on a pc all day. Logitech’s Pebble is a strong possibility as a result of, not solely can it simply disappear right into a bag due to its slim profile, however it should additionally run for as much as 18 months on its single AA battery. It’s not an adjunct they’ll have to fret about charging up every night time. We additionally like its ambidextrous design and its comparatively quiet nature — not like different mice, it makes little noise while you’re clicking and scrolling away. You’ll even have the choice to attach it by way of Bluetooth or USB receiver, and there are a handful of enjoyable colours to select from.

Buy Logitech Pebble at Amazon – $30

Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo true wi-fi earbuds

Anker Soundcore Liberty Neo


While not the latest true wi-fi earbuds from Anker, the Soundcore Liberty Neo are nonetheless nice. Weighing solely 0.2 ounces, the Liberty Neo are straightforward to put on each in an workplace setting and whereas figuring out. Their IPX7 water resistance helps through the latter, defending the buds from sweat when you’re figuring out. They additionally include quite a lot of ear suggestions and wings in varied sizes so you will get the best match — and when you do, these buds aren’t going anyplace. Continuous battery life is a bit quick at 3.5 hours, however you’ll get an additional 12 hours of juice with its charging case.

Buy Soundcore Liberty Neo at Amazon – $40

Greens Steel Beast insulated tumbler

Beast insulated stainless steel tumbler

Greens Steel

It’s essential for grads, busy with job purposes, internships, new jobs and aspect hustles, to remain hydrated. Green Steel’s Beast insulated tumblers usually are not solely good for cold and warm drinks, however they value $10 to $15 lower than some big-name opponents. They’re made from 18/8 meals grade metal that’s dishwasher secure, they usually include metallic straws and a splash-proof lid. And no matter which dimension you get (20-, 30- or 40-ounce), they’ll all match into normal sized cup holders. A 20-ounce mannequin has been my morning companion nearly each day for the previous yr or so and it nonetheless appears recent.

Buy Greens Steel tumbler at Amazon – $23

Bodum Chambord French Press

A Bodum Chambord french press on a table with milk and two coffee cups.


If your grad is a espresso (or tea) lover, elevating their brewing sport could make a giant distinction of their every day lives. Bodum’s Chambord French Press is an easy, inexpensive vessel that will probably be a step up out of your normal drip espresso machine or getting older teapot (whereas it’s marketed as a espresso maker, it may very well be used as a tea press as an alternative). The container is made from borosilicate glass and you will get the body in both plastic or stainless-steel. Instead of paper filters a french press makes use of a plunger and mesh filter that pushes espresso grinds and tea leaves down, infusing taste into the water above. That ought to prevent cash over time and creates much less waste.

Buy Chambord French Press at Amazon – $38

Tribit XSound Go

A Tribit XSound Go speaker sitting on a white table with a person using a smartphone in the background.


There are loads of Bluetooth audio system on the market, however Tribit’s XSound Go stands out for its simplicity. Measuring 6.7 x 2.2 x 2.3 inches, it’s practically pocketable and may keep in your desk all day lengthy when you work after which transition to a yard occasion with ease. It’s IPX7 waterproof so it’ll face up to a dunk within the pool, and its 24-hour playtime permits you to use all of it day lengthy with out interruptions. It has good sound high quality with deep, however not overpowering, bass and it features a built-in mic with which you’ll be able to take calls. Just pair it together with your smartphone or pill, select your tunes and let the speaker do the remainder of the work.

Buy Tribit XSound Go at Amazon – $37

Repel Windproof Double Vented journey umbrella

A woman in the rain huddled under a Repel travel umbrella.


Hear us out — a superb umbrella is an sudden but invaluable reward. Few issues are worse than getting caught in a downpour in your solution to work, particularly should you use public transit to get there. Repel’s windproof travel umbrella is simply the correct dimension — not too huge or too small at 11.5 inches in size — and its 9 bolstered fiberglass ribs stop it from being blown inside-out simply. We additionally like its single-button design, permitting you to open or shut it with one hand. Repel’s umbrella is a type of sensible gifts that your grad will probably be glad to have on the most vital occasions, they usually’ll lower your expenses in the long term by not needing to purchase a brand new, low cost umbrella each time the skies open up.

Buy Repel umbrella at Amazon – $22

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