Dads aren’t always easy to buy Father’s Day gifts for — but I reckon I can leverage my experience as an actual dad and tech reviewer to help you out.
So, right now lots of online sites will have a variety of Father’s Day gift guides up, because, well, it’s imminent and people are wondering what to buy. Quick tip: A hug is an excellent gift in and of itself, but often it’s also nice to be able to give people things if they’re within your budget.
I wanted to do something just a little bit different to the norm, because — to give a secret away — a lot of these things are thrown together more around what appears to be the best specials or has the best affiliate marketing rates rather than an actual appraisal of items that might make for a good gift.
I very much didn’t want to go down that road, as easy as it is. So I gave it some serious thought, and considered products that I’d personally like to get. Also — and this is key — they’re also items that I’ve personally tested and reviewed, so I’ll throw in links to those reviews if you want more details.
Quick caveat: All products were available as per vendor websites on 28/8/2023, but they’re subject to change, ooh… all the time. Not my fault if they do run out of stock, or whatever. OK?
Indulgent Phone Gift for Father’s Day: Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5
If you’ve got the budget for it (and it ain’t inexpensive) then the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 is an easy recommendation. It’s the best foldable phone on the market right now, nicely powerful and adaptable — especially if you add the optional S-Pen case to it.
|Buy The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5!||Buy On Amazon|
Practical Dad Father’s Day Phone Gift: Nokia XR21
I’m not much of a home handy person, to be clear, but you know what I am, sometimes?
Clumsy. That’s where the Nokia XR21 rather shines, because it’s a super-durable handset, and I really do mean super-durable. I’m generally super careful with any review phone that comes in, but the punishment I dished out to the Nokia XR21 was off the charts… and it survived it. If your dad works in environments that aren’t friendly to phones, or if, like me, he’s just a bit of a klutz, then it’s a good choice.
|Buy The Nokia XR21!||Buy On Amazon|
Gamer Dad Father’s Day Gift: Nintendo Switch OLED
I’m a gamer — that’s no secret — but while I do love what Microsoft’s done with GamePass (mostly), and there are some cracking PS5 exclusives — I’m rather besotted with Earth Defense Force 6 right now — I’d be lying if I didn’t say that my favourite game console and pick for dads everywhere would be the Nintendo Switch.
I’m often time poor for gaming, and the ability to take the Switch with me is a huge plus — as is the ability to pull it from its dock and play on the sofa if the TV’s already in use.
|Buy The Nintendo Switch OLED!||Buy On Amazon|
Best compact foldable for Father’s Day: Motorola Razr 40 Ultra
If you wanted to get your father a more compact foldable, you’ve got quite a few choices. Samsung’s the best known brand, but right now in terms of units I’ve been able to review, the Motorola Razr 40 Ultra is the model to beat, thanks to its app-friendly cover display and solid battery life.
|Buy The Motorola Razr 40 Ultra!||Buy On Amazon|
Best Father’s Day Gift for Action Dads: GoPro Hero 11 Black
Am I a man of action? That’s… debatable. But I was quite impressed with the general flexibility of shooting modes and the overall durability of the GoPro Hero 11 Black when I used it to shoot a recent trip to Japan.
What’s more, it made it all the way through several thumps down into my backpack without any complaints, and there’s plenty of evidence that it can take a lot more punishment than that, too.
If your dad loves to surf, mountain climb, or, like me, travel the world, it’s an excellent companion to document his adventures. And every dad deserves an adventure or two.
|Buy The GoPro Hero 11 Black!||Buy On Amazon|
Best Tablet Choice for Father’s Day: Apple iPad (9th Generation)
There are a lot of tablet choices out there, but if I’m advising anyone — including anyone buying a Father’s Day gift — on the best choice, I tend to advise picking up an iPad.
Why? Largely because Apple’s got tablet apps right from the get-go; while there are nice Android tablets out there to be sure, actual app compatibility for full-screen apps across the board is sometimes a bit sketchy, and you just don’t get that with iPads for the most part.
Then there’s the question of choice. The Pro models are nice, as are the Airs and Minis, but for most folks wanting a simple device for idle scrolling in front of the TV or on the train on the way to work, the basic model 9th gen iPad is more than enough.
|Buy the Apple iPad 9th Gen!||Buy On Amazon|
Best headphone Father’s Day gift for Dad: HyperX Cloud III Headphones
Sometimes, Dads need their alone time, but that can be tricky to manage. One way to help Dad escape the world is with a good pair of solid quality gaming headphones. I do rather like the HyperX Cloud III headphones, partly because of their sound, but mostly because they’re amazingly comfortable. Note: I am not responsible if your Dad gets lost in his own audio world as a result of you gifting them to him.
|Buy The HyperX Cloud III Headphones!||Buy On Amazon|
Best Budget Phone Buy for the Father’s Day: Motorola Moto e13
While I’m a big fan of premium smartphones, I 100% get that they’re not for everyone. They’re expensive, for a start, and not everyone wants or needs that level of phone technology in their pocket. If you’re buying for Dad on a strict budget, and especially if your Dad just wants the basics in a phone, then it’s well worth considering the excellent value Motorola Moto e13. Not a fancy phone, to be sure, but one that gets the basics right.
|Buy the Motorola Moto e13!||Buy On Amazon|
Keep Dad Powered Up Gift: Belkin BoostCharge Magnetic Wireless Power Bank 5K + Stand
It’s got one heck of a long name, but the Belkin BoostCharge Magnetic Wireless Power Bank 5K + Stand is really a pretty simple device; a power bank that’s also MagSafe compatible, so if Dad’s got a recent model iPhone — a popular choice amongst Australian phone buyers, so I’m sure there’s more than a few dads out there with one — it’ll magnetically attach to his phone and keep it powered up through the day.
It’s not just Apple-specific, though, because it’ll also charge other Qi-compatible wireless devices, or anything that you can plug a cable into from its USB-C port.
|Buy the Belkin Boostcharge Power Bank 5K!||Buy On Amazon|
Best retro gamer gift for Father’s Day (with a SNES): Unirally
So, each week I write about my pick for the retro game of the week, choosing from a wide array of consoles and generations, and checking in with what they might cost you to buy.
DMA Designs — yes, the folks who would go on to produce the Grand Theft Auto games – hit it out of the park with Unirally, and I was pleasantly surprised to find that it’s a surprisingly affordable game in this all-too-pricey retro world. If your Dad still has a Super Nintendo Entertainment System that he loves (I know I love mine), then this is a must-buy game — and one that’ll never be rereleased, thanks to (grr) Disney.
|Buy Unirally!||Buy on eBay|