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You can always go with roses, assorted chocolates and a greeting card, but a bit of imagination can’t hurt when it comes to making Valentine’s Day memorable. Here are a bunch of gift-giving ideas for her, for him and for the kids.
Whoever put the “i” in iOS (iPad, iPod, iPhone) devices ignored the “we”—until now. Thanks to the new category of “iShare” portable storage peripherals with built-in Wi-Fi, everyone carrying an iOS device can stream media from the same library of photos, songs, videos, books and documents. That means you don’t necessarily need to transfer content from a computer first. And if a couple or a family is traveling or at an event and each member has an iOS device, they can all feed from the same trough of archival or new content. It means that if someone takes pictures with an SD-card type camera, the images can be wirelessly transmitted to everyone in range who has set the Wi-Fi receiver in their iOS devices to the AirStash Wireless Flash Drive. It’s a USB SD card reader/writer with embedded transmitter and rechargeable battery designed for wireless sharing.
The iLuv iMM183BLK Hi-Fi Dual Alarm clock Radio with NOAA/S.A.M.E Weather is perfect for both members of a couple who each carry an iPhone or iPod touch. The dual dock clock radio not only assures that each device wakes up fully charged and ready to go, but each person can be awakened at a separate time by their preferred music or station. And, in case a storm is approaching, both will be alerted in unison.
With its ability to hold 8GB or 16GB of music, the newest (6th Generation) iPod nano from Apple is a wondrous gift for anyone. Incorporating a 1.5-inch multi-touch LCD; built-in clip; VoiceOver feature that announces the playlist, song and artist; FM radio; shake to shuffle capability and Nike + iPod Sports Kit compatibility, this Windows- and Mac-compatible music player wins hearts. It comes in pink, silver, blue, green, graphite or orange.
As a fashion accessory, the 4GB JetFlash V90 Mini Flash Drive (Gold Pizzaz) from Transcend may look like custom jewelry, but it’s really wearable data storage. Imagine how many shared moments in the form of photo files you could load into the 4 gigabytes of wafer-thin memory.
The LaCie CurrenKey is a 16GB USB flash drive may remind you of a gold doubloon or a foil-wrapped chocolate coin. Either way, the die-cast metal casing offers a certain gravitas missing from plastic-molded flash drives. The CurrenKey is also available in 8GB silver and 4GB bronze versions.
Thanks to the wooden housings with aluminum baffles, these thinksound in-ear stereo headphones that the company refers to as “black chocolate” produce such sumptuous sound, you might be tempted to eat them. Better not. There’s always another track to play. Models come with gold-plated 3.5mm plugs, multiple ear tip sizes and a cotton carrying pouch.
Guys don’t need an excuse to crave a new gadget. Virtually anything shiny requiring power will do. Still, some men especially like multi-purpose tools. For them, Leatherman's Skeletool Multi-Tool Stainless, in a Gift Tin is an all-in-one pocket instrument that functions as pliers, wire cutters, a knife, a bottle opener and more. And, if they want to see what they’re doing in dimly lit conditions, consider the Maglite ML125 LED Flashlight with NiMH Rechargeable Battery Pack, too.
When you’re apart but longing to stay in touch without eating up minutes, consider the Motorola MR350R Talkabout Two-Way Radio (Pair). With a range up to 35 miles, these voice communicators are a great way to express affection or negotiate a rendezvous when shopping at different stores at the mall. They’re also handy while skiing or requesting a lift from the train station. And you can use them for a link to your kids without having to commit to giving them a cell phone.
The Coby TFDVD7752 7" Dual Screen Portable Tablet DVD Player lets family members traveling together share the same movie across two portable screens. With dual 7-inch LCDs and dual earphones, two children, for example, could each grab their own sweet spot. Dual screens may help reduce fighting in the back seat during a car trip. Or one person could be in the front seat and another in back, yet each can enjoy the show. It’s double vision that works.
Why does the letter “Y” signify love? Because it’s the shape of a Y-splitter, an adapter for turning a single earphone jack into a dual jack so that you can share the entertainment with a loved one, or, at the least, a traveling companion. It’s also a way for two children to share the show in quiet. Just add earphones.
As a couple, you can share reality together in natural 3D or you can experience Hollywood’s version of depth perception by peering into a jaw-dropping, big-screen 3D HDTV. Assuming you own a 3D-capable set from Samsung, what better way to synch together than with the Samsung SSG-3050GB 3D Active Glasses (Battery Operated) 2 Pack? Ready, get set, dive in.
Assuming you both like to sing (and have access to a recording studio), then why not give the gift of professional vocalizing, tailor-made for laying down duets? The AKG C 1000 S Stereo Twin Pack and C3000 Studio Microphone Twin Pack (B&H Kit) each put two pitch-perfect pro microphones in a box ready for wrapping.
Children are sometimes especially susceptible to being left out of Valentine’s Day. For a parent needing to cover all the bases, here are a few inexpensive options:
The Hello Kitty series includes entry-level cameras and cases that are meant to bring a smile to everyone. In the process kids will learn to take their first pictures, too. Similarly, Sakar Crayola cameras are knockabout child-friendly toys that, depending on the model, take pictures or video. To see all the kid-oriented cameras from Sakar, click here.
If you want to give someone a keepsake you fill with digital pictures, consider the Digital Foci Pocket Album Deluxe OLED 1.5 (Ruby Red) on a keychain. The 1.5-inch OLED screen rotates 124 images from its 32MB of internal storage. Power is supplied by a built-in rechargeable battery. The pocket album is also available in warm gray as well as carbon fiber. It’s a gift that works for sentimental adults, too.