Mac Gift Guide: 10 picks for your favorite Apple fan

Whether it's a new OS, a laptop backpack or a one-of-a-kind widget, options abound

Note: At present, iMovie '06 is required to use plug-ins because iMovie '08 is a complete revision and the plug-ins don't yet work with it. That's why iMovie '06 is left in place when iLife '08 is installed; it's also available as a free download from Apple.

Another solid gift choice: iWork'08 (US$79), which offers full compatibility with Microsoft Office and great tools for making presentations, newsletters and all manner of graphically rich spreadsheets. Although not the most exciting gift for many, iWork is a great idea for the workhorse in the family, as well as for moms and dads who may need, for instance, to manage soccer teams or other extracurricular school activities.

.Mac

Apple's .Mac service has been called a waste of money. In fact, just last year it was possible to get all the features of .Mac using various free services. But much can change in a year -- and in this case, it has. Now, in addition to an e-mail account, Web hosting and external storage space, .Mac offers an array of impressive extras.

One new feature already mentioned is the stunning Web galleries that create a shared space for people to easily share photos and video online.

Other additions include Back to My Mac, which allows Leopard users to instantly access all of the files on their computers (or simply share the screen) from anywhere on the Internet, as well as the ability to sync an impressive array of data settings (including e-mail accounts, contacts, calendars, System Preferences settings, Dashboard widgets and more) across several Macs. All of these make .Mac, which goes for $99.95 a year, a strong gift choice.

iPod, iPhone and accessories

No gift list would be complete without an iPhone and the latest iPods. Every iPod model makes a great gift and has its own set of advantages, whether in features, size or price.

The iPod Touch is, of course, the most impressive as it boasts the same touch-screen display as the iPhone and can function as a mobile Internet device when in range of a wireless network. However, the iPod Classic is also a great gift, particularly for users who have large collections of music, movies and photos that they want to carry with them.

The iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle work for the more budget-conscious. The Nano is now the lowest priced video-capable iPod ever available and is a great gift for anyone on the go who wants a small fully powered iPod. Prices range from US$79 for the iPod Shuffle all the way up to US$399 for the 16GB iPod Touch.

So much has been said about the iPhone, now just US$399, that there's little need to describe it. Without a doubt, it will make a great gift, and we've heard plenty of people of all ages (from teens to seniors) already asking for one.

The one thing to keep in mind is that the iPhone requires an AT&T contract. If you're buying for users who have existing cellular service on a different carrier, you may want to consider the length of time left on their contract and the availability of AT&T service in their area. (How you ask them about those topics without giving away your gift plans is up to you.)

IPod and iPhone shopping isn't limited to the hardware; there's an entire ecosystem of iPod and iPhone accessories that make great stocking stuffers. Pick from an assortment of cases for protection and transparent screen protectors like Power Support's Crystal Film Set.

Other possibilities include travel chargers, FM transmitters such as Griffin Technology's iTrip and Monster Cable Products' iCarPlay series to listen through a car radio, and all manner of iPod docks and speaker systems.

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Ryan Faas

Computerworld
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

David Coyle

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

I rate the printer as a 5 out of 5 stars as it has been able to fit seamlessly into my busy and mobile lifestyle.

Kurt Hegetschweiler

Brother PocketJet PJ-773 A4 Portable Thermal Printer

It’s perfect for mobile workers. Just take it out — it’s small enough to sit anywhere — turn it on, load a sheet of paper, and start printing.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?