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Three Sweet-Sounding Tech Gifts for Mother's Day

By Guest Blogger(view all posts by Rick.Broida)
at 12:40PM Tuesday May 1, 2012
under Holidays

Mother's Day is just around the corner (May 13, in case you haven't checked your calendar lately). Don't worry: You've still got time to find a terrific gift for Mom.

Needless to say, I'm in favor of terrific tech gifts. And to me, there's nothing more terrific than the gift of music, especially when it's delivered in style.

With that in mind, I've rounded up three great gifts for moms who love music, whether it's at home, on the beach, or even on the run.

Jawbone Big Jambox
I was a fan of Jawbone's original Jambox, a small Bluetooth speaker that delivered admirably big sound. But there's big, and then there's BIG. Jawbone's latest speaker is three times the size of its predecessor, and as such it's much better for large rooms and outdoor environments.

The Big Jambox relies on Bluetooth technology to establish a wireless connection to a smartphone, tablet, or laptop. Most of these devices incorporate Bluetooth, though it's worth noting that the Amazon Kindle Fire and Barnes & Noble Nook Color/Nook Tablet do not.

I haven't had a chance to listen to the Big Jambox myself, but the reviews on CNET and Gizmodo had almost entirely positive things to say about it. My two sore spots: it's still not the most attractive speaker I've seen, and at $299.99, it's not exactly a bargain. Still, isn't Mom worth it?

JayBird Freedom Bluetooth Earbuds
Is Mom a walker? A runner? A gym-goer? Then she needs a good pair of earbuds to pair with her smartphone so she can listen to her favorite podcasts or playlists.

The best earbuds are those that free Mom from wire clutter. I'm partial to the JayBird Freedom Bluetooth earbuds, which let the phone stay in a pocket, strapped to an arm, or wherever, without a cord getting in the way.

The JayBird Freedom's claim to fame is a special set of ear cushions (provided in three sizes) designed to keep the earbuds securely in place. They promise six hours of play time on a charge and come with a hard-shell carrying case. I've tried these; they sound great. And they're competitively priced at $99.

Sonos Play:3
The Sonos Wireless Music System used to cost a small fortune, but now you can get into one for $299. Same as the Big Jambox, right? Right, but the latter is designed to be portable, whereas the Sonos has designs on the home.

Specifically, it's an expandable system. You can start with one speaker in one room, then add others to other rooms. Music comes from your own collection or online services like iTunes, Pandora, and Spotify. And where once you needed a pricey remote to control it all, now you can use free apps for Android and iOS.

Trust me: the Sonos boxes are awesome. But do consider throwing in the $49 Bridge, which plugs into your router so the speakers can be used wirelessly anywhere in the house.