Stuffing a sock full of gifts is quite a strange tradition, yet stockings remain as much a Christmas custom as mince pies and family arguments.
Whether lumps of coal or citrus fruits, there are many affordable ways to fill your festive legwear. Not a fan of the classics? Worry not: from smart bulbs to wireless chargers, we’ve picked out 10 of the top stocking-filler tech treats – which can each be yours for £20 or less.
Another loop sounds like the last thing you need to detangle your desktop. But Nolii’s Loop is different. Available with a range of connector combos (including USB-C and Lightning), the two-metre cord features a silicone slot near the business end. Drop that on the weighted dock to stop the cable from disappearing down the back of your bedside cabinet. The whole thing is reinforced with a kevlar collar, so you can wind it with impunity.
Nanoleaf Essentials Smart Bulb
Fairly lights might illuminate your room, but those decorations better be down by Twelfth Night. Otherwise…something will happen. For ambience to last the year, add Nanoleaf’s brighter bulb to an existing fitting. Good to glow in more than 16 million ways, each shiner connects directly to your smartphone via Bluetooth for tweakable tones and custom schedules. Add to an existing Thread network for faster response times, before configuring circadian shades which soothe you to sleep with warmer whites.
Audiophilia and affordability don’t usually go together. Yet KZ is aiming squarely at cost-conscious listeners with these stocking-filler ’phones. Styled like pro studio monitors, the ZSTX in-ears feature the same sculpted plastic build as the ZST, plus a removable braided cable which loops over your lug. The combo of a 10mm dynamic driver and balanced armature inside promises sonic performance to fool eager ears into thinking you dropped a lot more on your audio gear.
Elago AW5 AirPods 3 Case
Despite its legacy of pocket-friendly games machines, Nintendo never made a console on a keyring. Elago’s silicone shell doesn’t re-write history, but it does help you imagine what might have been. Designed for the AirPods 3, slot your charging case snugly into the silicone shell for retro protection that clips to your keys. Each dinky detail faithfully recalls the original Gameboy, from the crimson buttons to the slatted back panel. Shipped in three colours, the AW5 will protect your ‘Pods while you pretend you’re playing Pokémon on its non-existent display.
Christmas festivities are enough to leave anyone in need of a recharge. Give your blower a boost by dropping it on this plinth. Compatible with all Qi-certified smartphones, the fabric back panel delivers 5W power without wires. Plus the base is wrapped in renewable bamboo – so you can spread joy to the world while waiting for your phone to refill.
Mates are great for a lot of things, but even your most reliable friend will one day forget where they left your spare key. Not this Mate: attached to a fob, the water-resistant puck will keep track of your particulars. Compatible with iOS and Android devices, it has a 76m Bluetooth range to help you find from afar. And with a 3-year battery inside, your careless accomplice will have a long time to help you find the movables they misplaced.
Some say gaming isn’t a sport. If that were true, why would someone wear active socks while playing? Show the doubters that button-mashing is a legitimate discipline by pulling these PlayStation numbers up around your ankles. Adorned with two stripes and the Sony platform’s iconic logo, the cotton socks ship in DualSense White with a bit of polyester and spandex added for extra stretch – so you can train for your Olympic eSports debut in comfort.
TP Link Kasa Smart WiFi Plug Slim
Voice-activated lights are a Christmas miracle. Already strung up dumb decorations? Don’t bin your existing bulbs: attach them to this smart plug for instant illuminated intelligence. The adapter connects directly to your home Wi-Fi network, allowing you to control the current from anywhere. Besides activating the power flow, the app also lets you to set schedules and timers – perfect for Home Alone trickery to baffle bandits behind the blinds. It’s compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant too, so you can deck the halls on command.
Native Union AirPods Beanies
Socks in your stocking are usually a sign of bad behaviour. But gift an Apple fan this miniature beanie and they’ll instantly get the retro reference. Inspired by the sleeves which once wrapped every iPod in the land, Native Union’s knitted number is designed to keep your AirPods case cosy and safe. Crafted from recycled yarn, the two-tone protectors ship in packs of four. So your whole squad can rock a sock like its 2004.
No Hands Non-Contact Hygiene Keyring
The pandemic put sanitised hands at the top of every wish list. Keen to continue with clean mitts? Attach this nifty tool to your keyfob for a life less touchy-feely. Slide a digit through the loop, hook its slot around a handle and – voila! – you’ve pulled open door without transforming your palm into a bacterial breeding ground. Need to push a button? Its rubberised tip is perfect for poking panels (and smartphone screens). Plus the whole thing is made from copper, a naturally antimicrobial material.