As the year comes to an end, it’s time to sit back and reflect. This year we saw Samsung almost fold the Fold, the Motorola Razr make a comeback, and Apple impresses with the iPhone 11’s camera. We also saw gadgets from tech companies, large and small, that made a splash over the past year.
Surely, as we head into the season of Black Friday and Cyber Monday, along with the many promotions we’ll see before the holidays arrive, so be sure to keep on an eye out for the best deals.
Some of 2019’s best tech gadgets
Disclosure: ZDNet may earn a commission from some of the products featured on this page.
Apple AirPods Pro for $235
Since the AirPods first launched in 2016, users and critics alike have been asking for noise cancellation and replaceable tips for a better fit. Apple finally delivered all of that and then some with the new AirPods Pro. The new design sounds better, will drown out background noise in noisy environments, and comes with three different sized tips to ensure you get the right fit.
Nintendo Switch Lite for $200
The smaller, more portable Nintendo Switch gives up the ability to slide into a dock and game on your TV, but it gains battery life and fun new colors. The screen has been shrunk to 5.5-inches, and the Joy-Cons are permanently attached to the device. But outside of that, it’s still the same old Switch that users love and embrace.
Sonos Move for $400
Sonos speakers have long been considered some of the best home entertainment speakers available, but they all had one problem — they weren’t portable. With Sonos Move, the company created a speaker that sounds as good as the rest of its lineup, but it’s completely portable. You can use Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or Apple’s AirPlay 2 to stream music through the Move, regardless of how close the nearest power outlet is.
Amazon Echo Buds for $130
In many ways, 2019 was the year of wireless earbuds. Amazon’s Echo Buds have been well received and cost far less than Apple’s AirPods Pro. The earbuds have Alexa built-in, have active noise cancellation, and work with iOS and Android devices.
Apple iPhone 11 Max Pro for $999
The iPhone 11 Pro Max wasn’t supposed to blow us away, but that’s exactly what it did. Apple not only caught up with its camera features, but it’s done an amazing job with new features like Night Mode. Then there’s the fact that battery life on the 11 Pro Max is simply the best on any phone you can get this year.
Samsung Galaxy Note 10 Plus for $840
Arguably the best Android phone of 2019, the Note 10 Plus is well designed, has a long list of features and capabilities, and is powerful enough to keep up with whatever you throw at it. It has plenty of cameras to harness your creativity, and, of course, it has that S-Pen that users know and love.
DJI Mavic Mini for $399
The Mavic Mini is the ideal combination of a capable drone in a small package. With a range of up to 4km and battery life of 30 minutes, it’s pretty hard to believe it’s priced at $399. It’s perfect for those new to drones and enthusiasts who love shiny new things.
Fossil Hybrid HR smartwatch for $195
The Fossil Hybrid HR is billed as a smartwatch, but could easily pass as a normal watch. Underneath the physical watch hands is an energy-efficient display that sips on battery yet still provides notifications from your connected phone, as well as weather and calendar details.
Wyze Sense Starter Kit for $20
Know when a window or door opens, or whenever there’s motion in the hallway with the Wyze Sense starter kit. You’ll need one of Wyze’s security cameras to connect it all to the internet, but those are just as cheap as this kit.
Amazon Echo Dot with clock for $45
One of my top requests to Amazon’s Alexa is to ask for the current time. The new Echo Dot with a clock eliminates that by adding a small digital clock to the side. You can still ask for the time, of course, or use Alexa to control connected devices, ask questions or play music.
Ring Indoor Cam for $60
Ring security cameras are some of the best, but up until now, they’d all been made primarily for outdoor use. The new indoor camera is affordable and capable of helping you monitor your home.
Let’s be honest, distilling down the past year’s worth of gadget launches into a shortlist is hard. Really hard. Surely, we left some of your favorite gadgets off of this list. Leave a comment and let us know what your favorite gadget of 2019 is.