Tech gifts for people you don’t like

tech gifts people dont like for you don  t 3

Holidays are the time for family, friends, and thanks to social conventions, rooms teeming with people you would otherwise never associate with. From holier-than-though cousins who can’t let keep politics out of the dinner conversation, to well-heeled inlaws that will jaw on and on about the latest client at their firm after critiquing the wine, we’ll all brush shoulders with someone we don’t like this season. And maybe even have to buy them gifts. If you’re feeling passive aggressive and would rather give a gift that says “I don’t really like you” rather than actually blurting it out after one too many brandy-spiked eggnogs, let these godawful gadgets do the talking.

Neverwet ($19)

NeverwetDespite a series of amazing demos showing how this amazing nanocoating will shed water like Miley Cyrus sheds clothes at the VMAs, it kind of sucks when you actually try it (not unlike her music). We put Neverwet to the test and found that its purported ability to waterproof electronics is definitely optimistic – all of the ones we coated failed hard with a dose of water. The shirts, too.

SwannSmart ADS-450 Wi-Fi camera ($96)

SwannSmart ADS 450 WiFi cameraWe had high hopes for this seemingly simple Wi-Fi security camera until we discovered it works approximately one out of every five times we try to use it. We think there may be a formula involving the relative humidity, moon cycle and price of a barrel of oil. Even if you do coax it into functioning, you’ll need to spend $6 a month for Swann’s cloud service to get it to do anything useful, like actually record video. A product that will routinely fail and cost your giftee a monthly fee? Win and win.

Toshiba Satellite Click ($600)

Toshiba Satellite ClickRarely do we see a reputable manufacturer faceplant as hard as Toshiba managed to with the Click, a hybrid laptop-tablet combo that serves miserably in both roles. An AMD processor leaves it with dismal performance, it’s heavy, and the purported ability to use two batteries failed in not one but two review samples. It’s saving grace for this list is that it looks nice enough to trick the unsuspecting recipient into thinking them might be getting something awesome. Just make them wait until they get home to fire it up.

Necomimi Brainwave Cat Ears ($70)

Necomimi Brainwave Cat EarsSure, you could just buy some furry cat ears as a gag gift, but the “mind reading” allure of these ensures your recipient will have to try them on and demonstrate them in front of everyone. Using brainwave sensors, these ears actually sense your mood and move around to signal when you’re relaxed, focused or interested. The wrong recipient might actually find this gift cute, so we really only recommend targeting a guy who takes himself way too seriously. Don’t worry, they can’t detect suppressed rage.

Windows 8.1 ($120)

Windows 8.1Does your target own a perfectly good computer running Windows 7? Buy them Windows 8.1 and ruin it! Watch as they spend an hour installing it, only to realize that it adds a bunch of features that are totally unnecessary on a laptop or desktop, that you can’t get rid of. If you could download Windows 8.1 for free they would call it malware, but Microsoft charges $120 so it’s “software.” If your mark shows any doubts, just assure them that the number is higher so it’s better.

Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom ($150 on contract)

Samsung Galaxy S4 ZoomImagine a smartphone taped to a point-and-shoot camera. Does that sound like something you want to own? Probably not, which is why someone will be utterly dumbfounded that you bought them a Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom.

Krups XP1000 steam espresso machine ($60)

Krups XP1000If you buy someone an atrocious, bottom-of-the-barrel version of something nice, they’ll inevitably have to upgrade when they realize it’s completely inadequate. That’s your play here. Don’t think of it as spending $60, think of it as costing your giftee $500 somewhere down the line when they upgrade to the real thing.

Home Theater

Put your home theater to the test with these spectacular Blu-ray releases

What's the point of having all of that awesome home theater gear if you can't breed a little jealousy in your friends and family? We've put together this list of fantastic Blu-rays that have the goods to drop a few jaws.
Emerging Tech

Here’s all the best gear and gadgetry you can snag for $100 or less

A $100 bill can get you further than you might think -- so long as you know where to look. Check out our picks for the best tech under $100, whether you're in the market for headphones or a virtual-reality headset.

Got gadgets galore? Keep them charged up with the 10 best USB-C cables

If you weren't already aware, USB-C is quickly becoming mainstream. That's why we've rounded up some of the better USB-C cables on the market, whether you're looking to charge or sync your smartphone.

These 30 Amazon Coupons can help you save on the things you need

Did you know there are thousands of Amazon Coupons and promo codes that you can take advantage of? We found coupons for everything from tech to everyday products. Find out what savings you've been missing out on.

Sleep comfortably under the stars in one of the best tents

An essential piece of gear whether you're camping in your backyard or on a multi-day backpacking trip, here are our picks of the best tents currently on the market from car camping varieties to the best three-person option.

The best Pixel 3 screen protectors to keep your phone Pixel perfect

The Pixel 3 is equipped with the hottest hardware and a beautiful 5.5-inch P-OLED display protected by Gorilla Glass 5. But it's not invincible. Here are the best Pixel 3 screen protectors to keep it safe.
Home Theater

Set your ears free with the best completely wireless earbuds

If you can't stand the tangle of cords, or you're just excited about completely wireless earbuds, you're going to need some help separating the wheat from the chaff. Our list serves up the best wireless earbuds around.

Safeguard your new Apple smartphone with one of our favorite iPhone XS cases

If the iPhone XS is your next phone, then you’ll want to shop for some proper protection now. That glass sandwich design is all too easy to scratch or crack, so make sure you snag one of the best iPhone XS cases to keep it looking good.

When you're ready to shoot seriously, these are the best DSLRs you can buy

For many photographers the DSLR is the go-to camera. With large selection of lenses, great low-light performance, and battery endurance, these DSLRs deliver terrific image quality for stills and videos.

Here are our favorite wireless phone chargers for Android devices and iPhones

We checked out the best wireless phone chargers to make tangles and uncooperative ports a thing of the past. Whether you have an iPhone or Android, find out which wireless charging pads are worth buying, and how their features compare.
Home Theater

Make your vinyl collection really shine with one of the best phono preamps

Whether you're looking for a quick fix to set up your first turntable or a long-term audio upgrade for higher-quality sound, here are the best phono preamps you can buy that won't empty out your wallet.
Home Theater

The best MP3 players of 2018

Want to go for a run, but your phone is weighing you down? No worries. Can't fit your whole music library on your smartphone? Don't sweat it. Check out our list of the best MP3 players, and find one that works for you.
Emerging Tech

From flying for fun to pro filmmaking, these are the best drones you can buy

In just the past few years, drones have transformed from a geeky hobbyist affair to a full-on cultural phenomenon. Here's a no-nonsense rundown of the best drones you can buy right now, no matter what kind of flying you plan to do.

Huawei Mate 20 Pro vs. Samsung Galaxy Note 9: Flagship fight

When it comes to stunning flagships, Samsung and Huawei are often the first names the come to mind. And the new Huawei Mate 20 Pro is no exception. So how does it compare to the Samsung Galaxy Note 9? We put the two to the test to find out.