We all have that one friend or family member that just doesn’t click with technology. You’d love to give them techy items but worry that it’ll just entangle you into a lifetime of technical support. Luckily, these gadgets are all a cinch to use and should make life easier for those who use them.
While we can’t officially guarantee that your loved ones won’t ever call you for help troubleshooting tech issues, we have gathered up a few devices that take minimal tech knowledge to use, which should help everyone out. From a simple Kindle for the book lovers in your life to a digital picture frame that requires zero effort from the user, there’s bound to be something here that you can give to a technologically disadvantaged loved one.
Anyone who’s interested in books and doesn’t want a hefty physical book collection taking up space in their home needs a Kindle Paperwhite. Because its sole purpose is to house all your favorite books, it’s an incredibly easy piece of technology to get the hang of. You can purchase the ad-free version or save a few bucks with the ad-supported version; likewise, you can opt to bundle in Kindle Unlimited.
The Kindle Paperwhite has a 300ppi glare-free display and is engineered to look like real paper to your eyes, even if you’re reading outside on a sunny day. It’s water-resistant, too, so it’s not a big deal if it’s accidentally dropped in the tub or the pool (as long as it’s not left there for too long, of course). A full charge will last you up to 10 weeks, so you don’t even have to worry about charging it every day.
There are over 2 million titles to choose from in the Kindle store, including audiobooks. You can search for new titles to purchase directly from the store app in your Kindle Paperwhite. The most significant troubleshooting area here for those who aren’t tech-savvy is connecting the device to an available Wi-Fi network.
Look no further than the Kindle Paperwhite for a straightforward digital collection of all your favorite reads.
Everyone needs a good tablet in their lives, but some of the options out there are hard to use, especially Android tablets. Luckily, the latest 2021 iPad offers all the best features of a tablet wrapped up in a simple user experience. One of Apple’s best traits with all its tech products is an intuitive user interface, making it the best option for those on the tech struggle bus.
When deciding which 2021 iPad to purchase, you’ll have a few different options to customize it. First, you can select between a Wi-Fi-only model and a Wi-Fi + Cellular model, meaning you can use the tablet out of the house as long as it’s connected to your cellular provider. Second, you can choose between 64GB or 256GB of storage. And third, you’ll select either Silver or Space Gray for the iPad’s exterior color.
The 10.2-inch Retina display looks spectacular, and since it’s a tablet, it comes with a touchscreen, allowing you to use your fingers to navigate between pages and within apps. There’s also an 8MP rear camera for taking photos and a 12MP ultra-wide front camera for taking selfies or participating in video calls with friends and family.
There will be a slight learning curve with this iPad, but it won’t be nearly as large as that of an Android tablet. Additionally, users will need to sign up for an Apple account (if they don’t already have one), and they’ll need to know how to download new apps and search the device.
2021 10.2-inch iPad
Apple devices, like the 2021 iPad, are incredibly easy to use, even for first-time users
Did you know that Chrome OS, which comes on Chromebooks, is typically safer from viruses than Windows OS or macOS? This is awesome for anyone in your life who always seems to accidentally download sketchy software and clog up their laptop with bloatware and viruses.
The Acer Chromebook 314 is an affordable option that’ll keep your loved one safe from unruly computer viruses. On top of protection and privacy, this Chromebook also offers up the ability to download any of the 2 million+ Android apps from the Google Play store. Since Chrome OS is made by Google, this laptop is a smart pick for those already using an Android smartphone.
The 14-inch FHD display is plenty big and bright enough for run-of-the-mill tasks like browsing the internet, streaming videos, and checking your email. There’s 64GB of built-in storage, but Chromebooks also come with an additional 100GB of Google Drive space. Additionally, you can expect the battery to last for about 12.5 hours on a single charge; that’s suitable for about one to two days of use.
Acer Chromebook 314
It's hard to buy the right laptop for yourself, let alone understand it. The Acer Chromebook 314 takes the guesswork out, with a solid build and an intuitive interface.
The Fitbit Charge 2 delivers all the necessary fitness metrics you’d want in a tracker while simultaneously being easy to use and navigate. Its most basic tracking features monitor things like heart rate, sleeping patterns, daily steps, distance walked, and calories burned. Some of these basic metrics can be viewed on the fitness tracker itself, and some via the Fitbit app (Android/iOS).
For those also interested in more advanced health and fitness components, the Fitbit Charge 2 has you covered. If you’re into walking or running long distances, the built-in GPS will give you real-time stats like pace and distance. You can also get reminders to move sent to your tracker, and even take part in personalized guided breathing sessions when your heart rate gets too high.
Fitbit Charge 2
Fitness trackers can seem confusing at first glance, but the Fitbit Charge 2 gives you all the necessities with a simple user interface to access them.
The Amazon Echo Show 8 is a great medium for video calls and a solid foundation for building a smart home. The 8-inch HD touchscreen is perfect for streaming your favorite shows on Netflix, browsing through photos, or seeing your precious loved one’s face on a video call. Plus, if you’re on a video call, you’ll look great with the 13MP front camera and stay centered with auto-framing tech.
While the Amazon Echo Show 8 is a powerful device that can do much more than stream media and make video calls, those are two of the easiest (and most useful) functions to start with here for those who struggle with technology. Then, maybe every time you visit, you can teach them a few other things that the device can do. Likewise, you can always bookmark a resource for them where they can go to learn all the Echo Show 8’s features at their own pace.
Beyond making video calls and streaming your favorite movies, however, the Echo Show 8 can also carry out smart commands via Alexa. You can ask Alexa what the weather’s like outside, how old Paul Rudd actually is, or find you the best chocolate chip cookie recipe. You can also connect the Echo Show 8 to smart devices around your home, like smart lights or security cameras, and handle them directly from your Echo Show or via Alexa.
Amazon Echo Show 8
The Amazon Echo Show 8 makes video calls incredibly easy for both parties.
You can’t go wrong with gifting a digital picture frame to any of your loved ones. This Skylight Frame is Wi-Fi enabled, so all you’ll need to set this puppy up is an active Wi-Fi network. Then, you’ll get a unique Skylight email address that you and other family members can send pictures to, which will be immediately added to your Skylight Frame’s rotation.
Skylight’s email method to add new pictures is fantastic because the major events in your life can instantly be shared with your family member, even if they don’t have social media accounts. Anyone with the email address can send in pictures, so Grandma can regularly get a healthy collection of precious photos from everyone in the family.
On a more technical note, the Skylight Frame has a 10-inch color display with a 1280 x 800p resolution, making photos look clear and vivid. Plus, the display is a touchscreen, so it’s easy to manually swipe through the digital album if you’re eager to see all the new photos.
All of your favorite memories of traveling or spending time with friends and family will be on display for you every day.
Tile Mate Essentials come in handy for anyone who’s always forgetting where they left their purse, keys, or any other important stuff. This particular pack from Tile comes with two square Tile Mates, one Slim Mate, and one Sticker Mate.
The square Tile Mates have a hole in one corner—perfect for attaching to your key ring or simply dropping into your purse. The Slim Mate is great for your wallet because you can slide it into a credit card slot. Lastly, the Sticker Mate can be stuck to anything you frequently misplace in your home, like the TV remote or a phone charger.
Once the Tile piece is attached, you can easily find it with the help of the Tile app (Android/iOS) as long as it’s within range (up to 250 feet). Each Tile tracker has a built-in battery that’ll last for three years, so there’s no charging required. However, the battery can’t be replaced, so you will need to buy new Tile trackers once the battery on your current ones runs out.
The biggest teachable part of using Tile trackers is instructing someone how to use the app and find their lost things. You’ll have a broad view of all your items with a Tile attached, and all you have to do is press Find to locate your item. Plus, if you lose your smartphone, you can use any Tile tracker you own to make your phone ring; a quick double press of the Tile logo button will make your phone ring, even if it’s on silent. It’ll give your recipient peace of mind, just as it will for you.
Tile Mate Essentials
Not knowing where the remote is or where you left your wallet will be a thing of the past with Tile Mate Essentials.