Looking for the latest gadget, most awesome software and talked about apps to give the entrepreneur in your life for the holidays? Or are you an entrepreneur looking for ways to simplify, consolidate and manage your crazy day?
For the 2015 holiday season, here are 15 of the best gifts–gadgets, software and apps–on the market, all geared to taming your complicated life.
Stress, Stress, Stress
According to Entrepreneur Magazine, bringing new tech into your life can actually add tension and anxiety to an already overloaded day. There are so many ways to check email, get notified of new social media posts and find out about the latest crisis via text messaging. Too much information causes overload for owners of business opportunities and franchises.
But tech can also bring relief. If stress and tension are major concerns, and they are for many entrepreneurs, here are five gadgets that can help.
Called “gym membership for your mind,” Headspace offers guided meditation in 10-minute chunks for the unmindful. It was developed by a Buddhist monk-wannabe turned expert juggler. It is free to try and has multi-tier subscription program.
Spire is a tiny device that works with your smartphone to track the rhythm of your breath. Just clip it to your bra or belt, When it notices that your breath is getting too fast, indicating you are tense, it sends an alert. It sells online for about $149.
Stress reduces energy, a popular complaint among busy entrepreneurs. Thync, called by one happy customer “wearable espresso,” is a gadget that you slap on your head and neck when you need an infusion of vitality. It produces low-energy waveforms at various frequencies. As these pulsate through your brain and body, they trigger neural receptors that help your body invigorate and relax. It sells online for about $199.
How many times do you check your smartphone during the course of a day? Too often, if you’re like most entrepreneurs. Checky tracks how often you see what’s new on your phone and where you are when you do it. With this information to refer to, you increase your awareness of the notorious smartphone addiction. The idea is that with this data in hand, you will be able to gradually wean yourself from constant to just periodic checking. And it’s free.
Worried about losing your mind? Some entrepreneurs consider that a natural outgrowth of life on the edge. But Lumosity is software that says you can keep your brain cells intact and still start a company. Using brain games developed by neuroscientists, it lets you exercise your brain, improving memory, speed, problem-solving skills and focus. It has a free version, as well as a tiered subscription plan.
Staying in Touch
Monitoring projects and team members is a job that doesn’t stop when you leave the office. Busy entrepreneurs need to gather and share data even as they travel. Here are five helpful gadgets to help you stay in touch.
Is there anything more annoying than trying to find Wifi for your tablet? The 8” Archos 80b Helium Tablet lets you sign up for 4G wireless. Never worry about connectivity again. It sells for about $240 online and at retailers.
#7. SolPro Charger
As advanced as tech gets, your devices are still tied to their umbilical cords, also called charging cords, and a power source. The SolPro Charger is a step forward. It uses sunlight to charge your smartphone or tablet. You can charge your smartphone even as the charger takes in energy from sunlight. It sells for about $150 online and at retailers.
The paperless office is still a dream. While traveling, the lack of a printer can bring business meetings to a half. Consider the Primera Trio All-in-One Printer, with an optional battery, for scanning, copying and printing on the go. It weights just 2.7 lbs. It sells for about $400 online and at retailers.
If the Primera is too big, check out the ZutaLabs Pocket Printer. About 4” in diameter, 3” high and three-quarters of a pound in weight, it can fit in your pocket. Unlike most other printers, it has a mechanical drive system that lets it move across a any size piece of paper. Connect from your laptop or phone via Wifi. The battery lasts for one hour. Though it’s getting a lot of buzz now, It won’t be available until May, 2016. Preorder price is about $199 on the website.
#10. Flapit Counter
It’s likely you don’t need this addictive gadget, but it’s fun. The Flapit Counter sits on your desk or retail counter like an old-fashioned stock ticker. Except it counts in real time your YouTube hits, Facebook likes, Twitter followers and other social media contacts. Connectivity is through a tablet, computer or smartphone and Wifi. It sells for about $299 on the website.
The Nuts and Bolts
The latest and greatest are fun to check out, but every entrepreneur needs to be sure he has the basics covered. According to Lifehack.org, getting wrapped up in your core mission is essential, but you still need to stay on top of the world around you. With these five apps, you can make it happen.
#11. Evernote Premium
Upgrade your Evernote to Premium and get the added benefits of seeing prior versions of your notes and the ability to collaborate with team members and share notes with each other. Evernote is the go-to organizing apps for entrepreneurs just starting out or leveling up. There are monthly and annual subscription plans, all at nominal cost.
Time tracking keeps you in charge of your biggest resource. The Harvest app keeps timesheets, gives you access to your project data and budget in real time, helps with invoicing and tracks expenses. It has a free trial and a tiered pricing subscription plan.
Entrepreneurs tend to be awash in ideas. Capture them, organize them, brainstorm with others to make the most of your lightning bolt concepts. Mindnode is brainstorming, mindmapping and organzing software with a simple, intuitive interface. You can check it out with the free trial and buy it for about $30.
#14. DayOne App
If you keep doing the same things, things will never change. But at the core of entrepreneurship is change. That’s why journaling is so popular. By recording your thoughts regularly, you can spot patterns and save memories. DayOne gets high marks for its ease of use and ability to sync across all devices. It sells for about $10.
You don’t need this elegant but affordable piece of wearable tech. But it looks so techie and cutting edge, which, in fact, it is. Control it with touch, finger gestures and even your voice. It sells for about $300 online and at retailers.