Need I even say it? Ties are so passé it’s not even funny. Unless your dad is rooted firmly in the dark ages, chances are he’ll want a little less “tie” and a little more “high” — tech, that is, this Father’s Day. Clueless about what kind of gift to buy? No worries — here’s a few dad-friendly gadgets and apps.
Is it cold in here? Not anymore, thanks to the Nest Learning Thermostat. It’s easy to program, but it’s so much more. It actually learns your habits, and creates your home’s unique thermal profile which helps you save energy. Plus, it’s beautifully designed so that while dad will love it for it’s utter geekiness. $249, Amazon.com
If your man has a thing for setting meat on fire, the iGrill Digital Grilling Thermometer will be the way to his heart. This digital probe thermometer tracks the internal temperature of whatever you’ve got cooking and let’s your iPad or iPhone know when it’s cooked to perfection. Now you can mingle with your guests and never worry that you’re dinner’s too raw or charred beyond recognition. $79, Amazon.com
Remember the 80s boom box? Yeah, that bad boy knew how to get a party started! Cut to present day: How can dad blast his perfect pool party playlist for a crowd? The Big Jambox from Jawbone is the perfect solution. Fantastic sound, portable design, and it’s looks will get you noticed poolside. Just connect any Bluetooth enabled device wirelessly, and you’re ready to DJ. Plus, when the party’s over, use it as a Bluetooth speaker in the office for conference calls or Skype. $299 on Amazon.com
If dad’s idea of a good time involves extreme weather or extreme sports, he’ll want a camera that can keep up with his adventures without getting in the way. He can mount the ContourROAM Hands-free HD Camcorder to his helmet, handlebars or ski tips and then, with the push of a button, capture beautiful HD video from a unique first-person perspective. When he’s done being a daredevil, he can strap it to the stroller and capture your toddler eating ice cream on the way home from the parlor. $166, on Amazon.com
You say Nikki Minaj. He says Nikki Sixx. You say Deadmau5, he says Doobie Brothers. Before you call the whole thing off, get a Spotify Premium Membership. Millions of tracks from all decades, available for streaming on any device. The free version is cool, but premium gets you better sound quality, no ads, and the ability to listen offline and on your mobile phone. $9.99 per month
We know Dads have an inclination to hang on to their underpants until they’re barely held together with frayed elastic and string. Not pretty. Give him the hint with a subscription box from Manpacks. Each month he’ll get a fresh set of underwear and another manly thing like socks and razors (condoms too, unless you’re trying to make even more people who will call him “Dad”). Price varies based on package.
Dad won’t rest until he captures the perfect picture. With a Lytro Camera he won’t have to worry about it until later. This magical camera is as unusual inside as it is outside. It captures the entire light field of a picture, so you can focus on anything you like later. Even cooler, you can post the photo on Facebook and let your friends choose what to focus on in real time. You have to see it to believe it. Plus, the camera’s design is so unique, he’ll make a splash at the school recital AND be a hit with his buddies at work. $399 or $499 depending on color
If Dad’s usually the guy taking the picture, that means he’s never in it. Now, he doesn’t have to feel left out, thanks to the Belkin Camera Stand with Remote for Apple iPhone 4s, which allows you to control your iPhone or iPod Touch’s camera remotely. Use the detachable camera stand to prop your device on a tabletop, then use the remote to take a picture from up to 30 feet away, wirelessly. $31, on Amazon.com
If Dad thinks strollers are ho hum, just roll the Origami Stroller up and watch him perk up. With power folding (yes, it safely folds with no hands), an LCD monitor, pathway lights that turn on at dusk and it will even charge you cellphone as you strut— er, walk around the block. Do we hear “Tim the Toolman” Taylor grunting? Suddenly, strollers are a Dad’s domain. $849, Amazon.com
Leave a comment below and tell us: What cool gift are you getting Dad this Father’s Day?