We are almost at Christmas, and a lot of people don’t know what to buy their loved ones this season. Do not worry, we here at CTOvision have provided you with a list of items that will be certain to bring joy to your loved ones this holiday season.
1) New non-3D LCD/LED TV. New HDTVs have gotten extremely inexpensive. 32″ LCD TVs are down to about $300 dollars, super thin backlit LED TVs are about $600 for a 32″. Because I don’t believe in 3DTV yet, nor that it is ready for the living room (lack of content, need for ridiculous glasses, I could go on forever), don’t worry about spending the extra for a “3D HDTV”. Getting a good TV this holiday will be inexpensive and provide a quality present. After you find your ideal HDTV, check out www.monoprice.com for HDMI cables, speaker/AV cables and mounts.
2) Apple iPad/Samsung Tablet. I’m on record as opposed to the Samsung tablet, and I think I will be for a long time. But, the special person in your life (or you) may or may not be obsessed with Android and want the best out there (which for this year, sticks them with the Samsung Galaxy Tablet). As obsessed with Android as I am, I still can’t justify pulling the trigger. But if the person you are buying for is an iOS fan, the iPad shouldn’t be ignored. Swirling rumors of iPad 2 are already starting to build, and I wouldn’t jump in until iPad 2 is out. But, if you are in a tablet frenzy, there’s no better device than Apple’s iPad. (Additionally, TJ Maxx was selling them for $100 off, so make sure to shop around a bit and see what prices may come).
3) XBOX 360 Kinect/PS3 Move. Motion gaming is here to stay…unfortunately. But if the gamer in your life has always wanted a Wii (without the Wii), Microsoft and Sony have both come out with some pretty cool options available this holiday season. Microsoft’s Kinect uses infrared and cameras to track your motion, allowing the user to be the controller. On the other hand, the PS3 Move is more like the Wii, with wand like controllers. As of yet a full slew of games and true reviews of games are not yet out, but it is fair to say that by the end of Q1 there will be plenty of titles for both systems that will take advantages of all these have to offer.
4) New Smartphone. With the release of their Galaxy line of phones, Samsung has ensured that there is a quality Android smartphone for each of the major characters. The Captivate for AT&T, the Fascinate for Verizon, the Epic 4G for Sprint, and the Vibrant for T-Mobile. I would recommend HTC‘s Evo 4G on Sprint or Motorola‘s Droid X for Verizon users over the Samsung offerings. Of course, if Android isn’t your game, there is always the iPhone 4 (on AT&T). However, we here at CTOvision recommend waiting if at all possible. By Q3 2011, we expect to see 4G options shake out and provide consumers with a better idea of what the future will hold for their wireless carriers. Sprint’s 4G is speedy, yet doesn’t have much coverage, AT&T/T-Mobile’s HDSPA+ networks also provide a large speed boost over earlier networks (and any other 3G network). Lastly, Verizon’s LTE network is supposed to be start rolling out any day now, and we should have some idea of what it will be like in the near future. But the bottom line is this, all the “4G” networks are HUGE speed improvements over 3G, but the viability will come down to coverage area in your neighborhood.
5) E-Reader. The Amazon Kindle 3 is TERRIFIC, B&N‘s Nook Color is pretty cool too. After about 8 months using various e-readers, I have to say that I don’t think any LCD screen can really compare to e-ink. These readers differ in large part because of the screen options, but also in connectivity and battery life. The Kindle 3 can last up to a month, while the Nook Color only 8 hours. Additionally, the Kindle 3 comes in 3G flavors, while the Nook is stuck with WiFi only. Having to plug in another device on an almost daily basis does not appeal to me, which takes away from the Nook Color’s appeal (for me at least). Kindle 3 is only $189.99 or $139.99 (3G v WiFi), while the Nook Color is $249.99 (WiFi only). I can see the value of the Nook Color, it is a full fledged Android tablet; however, as a reader I think it is somewhat flawed.
So what are our CTOvision readers asking for this season? What are you going to get the people you care about?