You've run out of time — What last-minute gifts are available for the techie in your life?

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(Image credit: Shutterstock)

If you're reading this, chances are you're too late to go online and order a gift that will arrive in time for Christmas via normal delivery. Your options are dwindling, but there are still some other last-minute gift options open to you if you don't want to just pop a wad of cash into an envelope.

You can buy digital gifts right up to the last minute (even on Christmas morning) and have them delivered immediately via email. You can even print it out if you want to hand something physical to the giftee and give it that added touch.  

You can buy digital gift certificates for a lot of different products and services these days, from stores like Amazon and Newegg to more specialty stores that cater to your giftee's hobby or interests. It's much better to buy someone a gift that’s targeted to their interests and shows that you've really thought about them rather than a generic gift card. Although some may just prefer the universally accepted cash option - I'll leave that to your discretion.   

To help you choose, we’ve compiled a list of the best last-minute digital gifts for tech enthusiasts that we can quickly think of that hopefully put a smile on the face of the recipient. 

1. Digital Game Store Gift Card

(Image credit: Future)

Is the giftee a gamer? Maybe you know they're already getting a new game console for Christmas, here's a way you can add to that with a gift card for one of the online stores for Sony PlayStation, Microsoft Xbox, Nintendo, or even a PC game via Steam.

Gift cards can range from $5 - $100 plus and the price of games also varies greatly, so you might have to do a little research to check how much you want to spend.

2. Individual Games and Games Subscription Services

(Image credit: Microsoft)

Physical media for games is just becoming rarer and rarer as everything continues to move digital. Some of the latest generation of consoles don't even come with a disk drive, so picking up a subscription gift to Games Pass or a code for a new game is a nice gift - just stealthily investigate to make sure it's not a game they already own. You can purchase digital game codes from a variety of different websites like Steam or Amazon, that allow you a direct download once the code is entered.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate (Microsoft Xbox / PC $44): Access to an instant library of games on either console or PC, with the ability to play on your tablet or phone with cloud gaming. 
  • Nintendo Switch Online ($34 for one year): Play multiplayer Switch games and get free access to some classic Nintendo titles.
  • Red Dead Redemption 2  (PC $19) Go outlaw with this epic western adventure, with some of the most gorgeous graphics and environments seen in a video game.
  • Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 (Xbox Cross Gen Edition $48): Join Soap, Ghost, and the Captain on over-the-top missions around the world.
  • Elden Ring (Steam - PC $34): A game of the year when it was released with over-the-top big boss fights and a massive yet dangerous open world to explore. 
  • Marvel's Spider-Man Remastered (Steam - PC $31): Play as the web-slinging Spider-Man and protect the city of New York from villainous madmen and monsters. 

3. Streaming subscriptions

With the ability to watch and consume content on so many devices, there's no excuse to be bored. Gift someone a subscription to one of the most popular streaming services and watch and listen or your old favorites or discover new music or movies. Here are some services you can buy.

(Image credit: Disney)
  • Disney+ ($13.99 a month): A great gift for anyone who is not already a Disney+ subscriber, this service features all the Star Wars, Marvel, Disney, and Pixar content you can imagine. This doesn't come as a gift code unfortunately and would be on a subscription basis.
  • BritBox ($89.99 for 1 yr): The ultimate gift for fans of British TV, especially Doctor Who, BritBox is the only place in the U.S. where you can stream all 26 seasons of Classic Doctor Who. It also has all eight seasons of Red Dwarf and a slew of British mysteries.
  • Paramount Plus ($25 - $100): The ultimate gift for Star Trek fans, this network provides exclusive access to all the new Star Trek shows including Discovery, Lower Decks, and Picard. It also has all the current CBS shows and Nickelodeon content for kids. A year (with ads) costs only $49 while the ad-free version is $99 a year.
  • Netflix (any amount): The good thing about this card is that, even if your giftee already has Netflix, they can always use this to either upgrade their plan or pay some months in advance.
  • Spotify ($10 - $60): The most popular music service has something for everyone. If your giftee already has a single-user subscription, they may want to use the extra credit to move up to a family ($14.99 / month) subscription.
  • Hulu ($25 - $50): Get access to a slew of movies, network TV shows, and original programs like The Handmaid's Tale and Castle Rock.
  • HBO Max ($99.99 for 1 yr): With all the new Warner movies and series like House of the Dragon coming straight to HBO Max, this makes a great gift. However, there’s no gift code so you’d have to do it for someone with their knowledge.
  • Audible ($45 for 3 months): Plenty of stories and tales to keep you entertained through Christmas and beyond.

4. Newegg, Best Buy, and Amazon Gift Cards

(Image credit: Newegg)

OK, maybe not the most exciting gift card, but always useful if you know the giftee uses the stores to buy their favorite PC components or bits of tech. Newegg is known for having a great selection of PC parts and often some of the best prices, same goes for Amazon, with Best Buy becoming a great choice for the occasional tech deal. Gifting a gift card from one of these retailers would help to put some credit towards a nice techie gift.

5. MatterHackers 3D Printing Gift Cards

(Image credit: MatterHackers)

If your giftee is into 3D printing, MatterHackers is a candy store of bits and pieces to assist in your hobby. Everything from high-quality, custom filaments to 3D printers and accessories are available. You can get gift cards in denominations ranging from $25 to $1,000.

6. Adafruit gift card

(Image credit: Adafruit)

If your giftee loves doing electronics projects with Raspberry Pi, Arduino, or other types of single-board computers -- and if they don’t, they should start -- a gift certificate from Adafruit could be your best option. Not only does Adafruit stock all the major single-board computers and microcontrollers -- every version of Raspberry Pi, for example -- but it also has an entire universe of add-on boards, RGB light setups, robot kits, and more.

The company is not just a seller: as most of its custom boards and accessories are manufactured in its New York City-based factory. The company's MacroPad RP2040 is one of our favorite programmable keypads.

If you buy an Adafruit gift certificate, you can also feel good about supporting this amazing business. Founded in 2005 by Limor “Ladyada” Fried, Adafruit employs over 100 people and is dedicated to helping everyone learn more about STEM. The site has a vibrant community and more than 2,000 tutorials to help you do everything from creating an LED sign to soldering or designing RGB clothes.

7. Pimoroni Gift Card

(Image credit: Pimoroni)

Pimoroni is a maker electronics site based in the UK with a focus on Raspberry Pi and microcontroller products, however, don't let the UK location put you off as Pimoroni ships to the U.S. and elsewhere without hassle. Pimoroni has a selection of tech bits and pieces including the company’s line of programmable conference badges, eInk displays, and retro arcade kits. Gift cards are available at prices ranging from 10 to 100 pounds. 

8. Twitch Gift Card

(Image credit: Twitch)

If your giftee enjoys watching content on Twitch and has a favorite streamer that they would like to support and subscribe to, you could gift them a Twitch gift card. You can use the credit to buy or gift a “sub” or buy "bits" to show streamers' support.

Stewart Bendle
Deals Writer

Stewart Bendle is a deals writer at Tom's Hardware. A firm believer in “Bang for the buck” Stewart likes to research the best prices for hardware and build PCs that have a great price for performance ratio.

  • Colif
    Buy them a pair of Focal Bathys, they will really appreciate it... or should if they know anything :)
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Or you can go to something called "a store", typically made of tin surrounded by bricks, and buy a proper gift.
    Reply
  • Colif
    Alvar Miles Udell said:
    Or you can go to something called "a store", typically made of tin surrounded by bricks, and buy a proper gift.
    Go "outside"? Are you mad.... there are people out there.... the horror
    Reply
  • USAFRet
    Colif said:
    Go "outside"? Are you mad.... there are people out there.... the horror
    I went out today.
    But it was for a noble cause....the beer fridge was near empty.
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Colif said:
    Go "outside"? Are you mad.... there are people out there.... the horror

    Even though you will be asked to tip at a self service checkout, it's better than a gift card.
    Reply
  • Colif
    depends where you live if you have to tip

    Beer is an essential item, I guess it was a worthy sacrifce
    Reply
  • Alvar "Miles" Udell
    Pretty much anywhere in the USA sadly tipping is expected even at self service places.
    Reply
  • JeffreyP55
    Admin said:
    From gift cards to streaming services, these digital gifts can purchased and delivered at any time, even Christmas Day.

    You've run out of time — What last-minute gifts are available for the techie in your life? : Read more
    A wallet lock. "Stop spending all the money on garbage." The ex would say. Making enough money didn't seem to be considered.
    Reply