This vs That: Holiday Gift decisions you need to make

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Gifting decisions during the holidays are difficult, and so is asking for the right gadget when you’re on the receiving end. There always seem to be two (or more) gadgets to choose between.

Do you get an iPhone or an Android this year? Which AI speaker path do travel down for the rest of your life, Amazon Echo Dot with Alexa or Google Home Mini with Google Assistant? Are you going to be playing Nintendo games for the next four years or become a PlayStation gamer? 

These are the questions that make or break a good wish list for the holidays. That’s why we’ve put together a this vs that comparison in order to direct you to the right product for you.

Let the gadget duel begin.

iPhone X vs Samsung Galaxy S8

5.8-inch screens are the rage right now, with both Apple and Samsung pining to get you to buy into their redesigned flagship phones. It’s easy to like both, thanks to their tall, expansive screens that have a nearly bezel-free face. It looks like the future.

What it comes down to: Do you like iOS 11 or prefer Android Nougat? Losing Apple’s iMessage by switching to Android remains a problem, so that could sway you. On the other hand, Samsung’s phone is cheaper and has a headphone jack and a fingerprint sensor. Granted the sensor is on the back and in an awkward spot. In this case, past features may determine your future phone.

Amazon Echo Dot vs Google Home Mini

Amazon and Google are in an AI war and also a price war right now. They’re doing everything in their power to sway you to their flavor of a smart assistant inside your home. Both can play music, control your lights and answer questions.

What it comes down to: Amazon’s Alexa assistant the Google Assistant are becoming more alike everyday. Alexa can do more right now, but Google’s deeper into machine learning and leveraging its search data to enhance Google Home and predict what you want to know. Right now, we like the Echo Dot, but that can easily change in 2018.

Fitbit Ionic vs Apple Watch Series 3

Fitbit makes a true smartwatch now, and it still has excellent activity tracking chops to go head-to-head with the brand new Apple Watch 3. They both receive your smartphone notifications, track your daily steps and even have contactless payment chips inside. Fitbit and Apple are clearly going after the same people.

What it comes down to: The first thing you will notice is that Fitbit Ionic is cheaper than the Apple Watch 3. But the price difference isn’t that big. Apple Watch is faster, brighter and has a better, refined interface thanks to watchOS 4. Fitbit has the leg up in putting your activity tracking at the forefront.

iPad Pro 10.5-inch vs Samsung Galaxy Tab S3

Apple and Samsung make the best tablets and they had two new flagships in 2017. Both the iPad Pro 10.5-inch and 9.7-inch Samsung Galaxy Tab S3 offer nearly the same sized beautiful screen for watching movies and staying productive with a stylus (an Apple Pencil or an S Pen).

What it comes down to: Apple has the best tablet app selection, meaning the Samsung tablet suffers because Android apps much of the operating system isn’t built for a tablet in mind. But we still like Samsung’s screen and speakers just as much as the iPad Pro and it costs less. If you’re willing to spend more, though, go with an Apple tablet of any size.

Nintendo Switch vs PS4

Nintendo and Sony have the two most popular video game consoles in 2017, and that means you have a tough decision to make. You’re unlikely going to buy both at once, and they cost nearly the same amount of money to buy.

What it comes down to: Nintendo Switch is our favorite because it’s portable (though not pocketable) and it has games like Super Mario Odyssey, Mario Kart 8, and Zelda: Breath of the Wild. The Nintendo hits won’t stop coming in 2018. Sony’s system leads in power and mature games, including Call of Duty WW2 and Star Wars Battlefront 2. And it’s more likely to get the next Grand Theft Auto and other titles that demand better performance. It all comes down to video game preference in our minds.

MacBook Pro vs Dell XPS 13

Dell has delivered our favorite 13-inch laptop two years running, but many people prefer macOS and that’s an Apple-only affair. You’re going to need a MacBook for that and a whole lot more money. Both laptops come in 15-inch configurations, too.

What it comes down to: Are you bent on running Windows 10 or macOS, and are you willing to pay extra money for the latter? Both have a slick design, but the Apple TouchBar does little and we think the Dell laptop has a more modern look to it. It’s more for your money.

Matt Swider