Here are some budget-friendly options that will make people happy over the holidays without murdering your budget.
When Google debuted its charming, low-budget cardboard VR set-up at I/O, it almost seemed like it could have been joke. But the DIY virtual reality set-up worked, and now Google Cardboard has its own app section in the Google Play store. There are a variety of third party companies offering pre-made Cardboard kits. Dodocase does them especially well. If you can’t splurge on an Oculus kit, this is a fun gift for someone interested in VR. $26-$30 [Dodocase]
The Kindle Paperwhite isn’t Amazon’s flashiest ereader, but it is one of the best deals. The screen is beautiful and resembles paper in a way that tablet screens cannot. It doesn’t have the full capabilities that the more-expensive Fire tablets have, but if your loved one loves to read, it’s still a terrific gift. $159 [Dick Smith]
This flexible, affordable plastic band is the perfect entry-level fitness tracker. The battery lasts six months, it’s waterproof, and the interface is minimalist and easy-to-use. In addition to measuring steps, calories burned, and distance, it also doubles as a sleep tracker. $57 [Misfit]
This minuscule drone looks like a ton of fun. Look at it! It’s so small! Screw big drones. If you know someone who liked playing with remote-control helicopters or cars growing up, they’re going to love this. Hell, if you know someone who enjoys fun, they will enjoy flying this thing around. It’s a little challenging to control, but resilient.
I’ve never thought of a drone as cute until I saw this lil guy. $36 [Amazon]