Tech of the Pops
Dads are a notoriously tough bunch to buy for: if they haven't already got the killer gift you've carefully selected, then they'll often have an opinion on it, and not necessarily a diplomatic one.
That's why we've gone to the furthest corners of the known internet to find these tremendous tech presents your dad will love this Christmas. Hey, you might even get a grunt of appreciation.
Logitech Harmony Smart Home Control
This universal remote can replace almost any other controller – be it for the TV, stereo or other devices. It can also connect to many other home and entertainment devices such as the Nest Learning Thermostat and Philips Hue LED bulbs, giving dad a dangerous amount of power over the home.
Price: US $133, UK £60, AU $125
Nest Cam Wireless IP Camera
Are you home? Is the dog OK? Have the bins been collected? Are the neighbours home?
These and many more questions can be answered with help from the Nest Cam, a 1080p Wi-Fi camera that streams super-sharp video to computers, phones or tablets.
It can send your dad alerts if it senses motion or sound, and the 8x zoom and wide-angle 130 degree lens ensure that he'll see the whole picture very clearly.
Price: US $184.99, UK £159, AU $330
Zepp Golf 3D Swing Analyser
What better gift to buy your fairway frequenting father than a gadget that'll not only improve his swing, but allow him boast his best scores on social media, too?
A handy mount holds the Zepp in place on almost any golf glove, where it can track a variety of statistics related to his swing, and also offer personalised tips and training exercises.
Price: US $130, UK £109, AU $230
PowerLead Spow 10,000mAh Solar Battery Pack
The PowerLead Spow 10,000mAh Solar Battery Pack will let your dad harness the power of the sun to charge his gadgets – perfect for holidays, or just for the garden.
The high capacity Lithium battery can power a smartphone twice over, and give juice to other tech at the same time thanks to the dual USB ports.
Price: US $20, UK £13.89, AU $30
Studica Da Vinci 1.0 Junior 3D Printer
If your dad's always got a big idea to share, then maybe he'd like a chance to make it himself with his very own 3D printer. The Studica Da Vinci 1.0 is a great value entry level desktop 3D printer that can print almost anything up to 14.75cm².
Designs can either be loaded directly from a PC or MAC, or via the SD card slot, and it uses the cheap and widely available PLA filaments.
Price: US $400, UK £267.44, AU $560
PowerUp 3.0 Smartphone Controlled Paper Aeroplane
The Electric Paper Airplane Conversion Kit 3.0 from PowerUp turns any aerodynamic paper plane design into a powered model that'll fly for up to 10 minutes and has a range of 55 metres from the tablet or smartphone it's synced to – considerably further than it will get just gliding.
Included in the kit is a booklet that gives tips on how to make the perfect paper plane, but to be honest, if your dad doesn't know how to make one of these already then your childhood belief in him will be shattered.
Price: US, $50, UK: £35, AU $75
Help your dad take control of his bookshelves with the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite. This is simply one of the best value ereaders around: it has a clear, bright screen with built-in light, and can download books via Wi-Fi or 3G, depending which model you choose.
There's space for thousands of books, and access to over 3 million books on the Kindle store. There's also a built-in look-up feature that integrates the Oxford English Dictionary, and it can translate text from a number of languages if needed.
Price: US $99.99, UK £109.99, AU $119.99
iRIStag Wireless Device Finder
With an iRIStag Wireless Device Finder, your dad will never have trouble locating his phone, keys or anything else he can think to attach the iRIStag onto.
There's also a handy Smart Park mode, that – with assistance from an app – will help him find his car in even the busiest of shopping centre car parks.
And as if that wasn't enough from one tiny gadget, the iRIStag can even be used as a remote camera trigger. Impressive.
Price: US: $25, UK £15.95, AU $35
FishSpy Underwater Camera
Does your dad regularly bore you with tails of nearly catching the biggest fish he's ever laid his hands on? He might appreciate a helping hand from the FishSpy underwater camera.
This waterproof camera connects to your dad's smartphone or tablet via Wi-Fi, and transmits or records video for up to 4 hours.
It promises to "unlock the secrets of the water" by livestreaming the "hottest fish action," which actually sounds rather disturbing.
Price: US $375, UK £249.95, AU $525
For shopping or to-do lists, paper is becoming a thing of the past. Give your dad a modern alternative in the form of an 8.5-inch Boogie Board. The durable plastic tablet features a unique high-contrast LCD display that can be erased up to 50,000 times with just a touch of a button. The included pressure-sensitive stylus feels brilliantly intuitive.
Price: US: $45, UK £29.99, AU $60