Santa’s already on his way, and two online trackers are following his every move

santa trackers norad 2013

Santa’s already on the road, or should we say, “in the sky”, making his way from home to home, delivering gifts as he goes.

Beginning his mammoth annual journey in Australia, New Zealand, and the South Pacific, the big guy in the red suit is certain to be exhausted by the time he reaches the US, so be sure to leave out a few more mince pies than usual for him, and, while you’re at it, an extra glass of sherry.

Thanks to websites from the North American Aerospace Defense Command – better known as NORAD – and Google, kids keen to follow Santa’s progress can check in right now to see how he’s doing with all those gifts.

Both sites have been revamped for 2013, with NORAD’s Microsoft-sponsored offering coming with a new 3D globe and advent-calendar arcade which each day throughout December has been rolling out a new online game for visitors. Seasonal music and short Santa-centered movies are also part of the set-up.

Google’s site, too, has plenty of extras to keep the kids, and possibly quite a few adults, entertained, with the Mountain View company’s service not surprisingly making full use of its comprehensive Maps tool to bring you up-to-the-minute information on Santa’s whereabouts.

Both NORAD and Google have launched accompanying mobile apps for the their respective tracking services, while Google is also offering Chromecast owners the chance to beam the whole experience to their TV set.

NORAD’s been in the Santa-tracking game for far longer than Google, starting out one Christmas Eve almost 60 years ago. Amusingly, the whole shebang is actually the result of an error made by a Colorado Springs newspaper in 1955.

A ‘hotline’ number offering kids the chance to call Santa was misprinted by the paper – the number instead belonged to NORAD’s predecessor, the Continental Aerospace Defense Command. The operators were, of course, flooded with calls that night, but luckily for the kids, they played along and gave out updates on Santa’s location. Born from a printing error, the evening has since become a tradition, with the Internet opening up lots of new possibilities for the service.

NORAD tracker / Google tracker

Gaming

The history of Battle Royale: From mod to worldwide phenomenon

Battle royale games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds’ and Fortnite have become the biggest trend in video games. The genre is also pushing the envelope in streaming and eSports in a way that might hint at the future of the industry.
Movies & TV

He created comics, movies, and superheroes. But Stan Lee lived for joy

Stan Lee was a creator, a celebrity, an icon, and beneath it all, a real-life good guy with all the same human qualities that made his superheroes so relatable. And his greatest joy was sharing his creations with the world.
Wearables

Check out 25 of the best Wear OS apps for your smartwatch

Looking for some ways to spruce up that new Android smartwatch of yours? Here are the best Wear OS apps to download and use with any Android smartwatch, including a few specially enhanced for Wear OS 2.0.
DT Daily

DT Daily: Hip-hop artist Rakeem Miles talks musical upbringing, ‘Dante’s Toys’

Rakeem Miles may be best known for his musical endeavors, but he's looking to change that with his forthcoming animated show. On Monday's DT Daily, we discuss Miles' origins, what drives his passions, his favorite superhero, and more.
Computing

Our favorite Windows apps will help you get the most out of your new PC

Not sure what apps you should be downloading for your newfangled Windows device? Here are the best Windows apps, whether you need something to speed up your machine or access your Netflix queue. Check out our categories and favorite picks.
Social Media

Twitter boss hints that an edit button for tweets may finally be on its way

Twitter has been talking for years about launching an edit button for tweets, but it still hasn't landed. This week, company boss Jack Dorsey addressed the matter again, describing a quick-edit button as "achievable."
Photography

Get up close and personal with this telephoto lens for your phone

Moment is replacing its aging 60mm telephoto lens with a new 58mm tele lens, redesigned from the ground up for the latest iPhone, Pixel, and Galaxy phones. Mount it onto the phone via a case and get closer with 2x optical zoom.
Mobile

Lyft’s new rewards program promises ride discounts and comfier cars

If you're always hopping in and out of a Lyft car, then you'll be pleased to hear that the ridesharing service is about to launch a rewards program. Perks include discounts on future trips and upgrades to comfier cars.
Mobile

The world’s first smartglasses showrooms open in Brooklyn and Toronto

Canadian startup North is hoping smartglasses will be the next big wearable. After announcing its new Focals smartglasses in October, the company opened product showrooms in Brooklyn and Toronto.
Deals

Here are the best Apple Watch and Fitbit Versa deals for Black Friday

Apple products are the most sought-after products for Black Friday, the leaked preview ads show what discounts retailers will have for the Apple Watch Series 3 and other smartwatches, such as the Fitbit Versa, this holiday season.
Mobile

Master your new Nokia 7.1 with our favorite tips and tricks

At $350, the Nokia 7.1 is a nearly perfect budget phone. It has a gorgeous body, good hardware, and a capable camera. Recently purchased the Nokia 7.1? Here are a few of our favorite tips and tricks to get you started with your new phone.
Mobile

Samsung Galaxy S10 could nix the notch in favor of a "punch hole" cutout

While we still may be months away from an announcement, there's no doubt about it: Samsung is working hard on its successor to the Galaxy S9. Here's everything we know about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy S10.
Mobile

Android will finally get a faster sharing menu, but it might take a while

The Android sharing menu has gotten a whole lot better over the years, but it's also gotten slower. Thankfully, however, it seems as though Google is working on a better, faster sharing menu but, unfortunately, it may take a while.
Mobile

The best iPhone XR cases to keep your phone shiny and new

Apple's new iPhone range is the toast of 2018, with beautiful style and more power than you can shake a stick at. But beauty can often be fragile -- keep the damage to a minimum with the best iPhone XR cases.