16 Must-Have Gifts for Entrepreneurs
Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox
Our drool-worthy gifts for the entrepreneurs in your life promise to make them feel appreciated and stylish--and make their hard-earned success a bit more satisfying. Whether or not you've reached the same heights, you just may want some of these cool items for yourself.
AOC 16-inch Portable USB Monitor
This sleek 1.4-inch-thick monitor ($139) connects directly to a laptop via USB cable for twice as much visual real estate as the computer's screen alone, no extra power cables necessary. A fold-up stand in the back props up the monitor in portrait or landscape view.
Freehands Knit Gloves
Smartphone and tablet users who need to brave the cold will love a pair of Freehands ($20 to $80), which come in materials like wool/acrylic, fleece and even cashmere. When they need to bang out a text message or an e-mail, they just pull open the tips of the thumb and forefinger to expose skin and tap away, while the rest of the hand stays cozy.
SoundJaw Unlimited tablet sound enhancer
The tinny speakers on most tablets blow, and the fact that they don't face the viewer only makes matters worse. Yet hauling around an external speaker for pad-based presentations or video-viewing is a pain. SoundJaw's snap-on widget ($14) is a simple yet brilliant device that redirects the speaker's output toward the user's ears.
Mophie OutRide iPhone kit
Shooting video with an iPhone is cool. Shooting it with mophie's wide-angle lens ($130 to $150) attached to its waterproof and water-resistant iPhone case with a built-in tripod mount is way cooler. Businesspeople on the go can capture the whole scene at the trade show or sales meeting (or beach-bound vacation) in HD.
Native Union Curve BT iDock Phone Handset
Know someone who's running a startup from their smartphone? Help them upgrade to this slick, full-size handset, which is easier to hold all day than a slippery mobile phone. The Curve's smartphone dock ($100) does additional double duty: It recharges the phone and powers its Bluetooth connection to the handset.
Presso Espresso Machine
Make a dramatic show of drawing a double espresso for guests with this uncomplicated machine ($150). Poor boiling water into the top, then lift the shiny stainless steel arms and press down to force the water through the ground coffee beans. No noise or mess--just a wicked-good brew.
Click & Grow Electronic Smartpot
Add some green to someone's cubicle with this automated planter ($60); it makes tending a mini-crop of basil, thyme, peppers or other plants as easy as reloading the ink cartridge on a printer. The planter, about the size of an external hard drive, takes "cartridges" of seeds, preloaded with the necessary nutrients. All desk jockeys have to do is refill the water reservoir when directed by a flashing light. Replacement cartridges run $20 each.
Kobold Himalaya Everest Edition Watch
You've reached the top of your world; shouldn't your watch reflect that? This limited-edition timepiece ($16,500) does. Its polished face is cut from stone collected from the summit of Mount Everest.
Kaikuuu01 Speaker Table
Tune up that merchandise display. Through the unique sound-carrying properties of glass, this tabletop ($5,400) works as a giant speaker when connected via Apple's AirPlay to a Mac's iTunes library.
Logitech Washable Keyboard
Keyboards shared by multiple staffers (or even the one on your personal computer) can quickly become nasty. This one washes clean with good old soap and water. ($40)
Eastern Collective Cables
These stylish cables ($18) add a sartorial spark to the mess of wires that connect Apple gadgets, computers and mobile devices. The best part? You'll always know which cables belong to you.
Jack Spade Nylon Canvas Expandable Day Bag
Jack Spade Nylon Canvas Expandable Day Bag ($225)
Your bag or briefcase is an expression of what matters to you. Shoulder this water- and abrasion-resistant Jack Spade messenger tote ($225) --large enough for a laptop and papers--and your customers, vendors and employees will pick up on your sense of functionality, understated elegance and downtown style.
MaterialSix iPhone Panel
Swap out the back of your iPhone for a luxurious hardwood plate ($89 to $99) of Hawaiian koa or birdseye maple, among other options. For $5 more, MaterialSix will engrave the plate with an image of your choosing.
Evernote Smart Notebook by Moleskine
Write down thoughts, scribbles and more on a page of the Moleskine notebook ($25), snap a picture with the Evernote app, and the notes are transferred to your smartphone, where every written word becomes stored as a searchable data file.
Jawbone Jambox Bluetooth speaker
Choose from an array of screens and colors to create a customized desktop speaker. Powered by a rechargeable battery, the stapler-size wireless device ($200) connects via Bluetooth to iPads, iPhones, Android smartphones and tablets and most laptops.
Drobo Mini Drive
Full-length movies, thousands of high-resolution images and giant InDesign files can suck up gigabytes of space on a computer, and most external hard drives are made for occasional backups, not for continuous use. (In other words, they're slow.) Not the Drobo ($649). Tethered to a Thunderbolt or USB 3.0 cable, its lightning-fast, solid-state drive transfers gigabytes in seconds, not minutes.