We know what the geek in your life wants

TechRepublic conducts a survey each year as part of our Geek Gift Guide series. The results for 2009 may surprise you.

Each year, as part of our overall effort creating the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide, we ask our resident researcher Liz Lightfoot to conduct a formal, scientific survey regarding the gift-giving intent of our community and members. The results of the survey are always enlightening and often surprising, but the 2009 results offer up some unexpected revelations.

Looking for some ideas this holiday shopping season, then check out the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide 2009. The PDF version of this blog post is available as a free TechRepublic Download.

Survey results

Question 1: What geek gifts are you most likely to give this year?

Apple gadgets like the iPod and iPhone are well represented in this category, but the unspecified under $50 tech toy tops the list.

Question 2: What geek gifts are on your personal ‘wish list' this holiday season?

The wish list mirrors what many of the givers said they were most likely to buy this year, which should mean lots of happy people all around this year. The wish list does include the notebook/netbook category - you can never go wrong with another computing device I guess.

Question 3: Where do you usually shop for your geek gifts?

These results surprised me slightly - considering only the top seven retailer choices in the survey, Amazon is the clear winner. Despite efforts by bricks and mortar retailers like Best Buy and Walmart, geeks prefer to do their buying online with eBay and Newegg making the top seven choices. (For a complete list of retailers and how they ranked overall, see the last image.)

Question 4: How much do you plan on spending this holiday season?

The majority of respondents are planning to spend between $250 and $1000 this year for holiday gifts. In 2008, survey respondents said they were going to spend slightly more with the majority skewed toward the $500 to $1000 range.

Gift ideas

If you are still looking for that perfect gift for the geek in your life, no matter what your budget, then you should download the TechRepublic Geek Gift Guide 2009. We review over 25 geek-friendly gifts ranging from big-ticket items like an Internet-ready LCD television to a $7 Ethernet crossover adapter. There is bound to be a gift idea that works for you in this year's guide.

All of the individual gift reviews published by TechRepublic during 2009 are available on the Geek Gifts 2009 special report page.

Supplemental data

I thought these graphs might be of interest.


Mark W. Kaelin has been writing and editing stories about the IT industry, gadgets, finance, accounting, and tech-life for more than 25 years. Most recently, he has been a regular contributor to BreakingModern.com, aNewDomain.net, and TechRepublic.

Editor's Picks