CNET también está disponible en español.

Ir a español

Don't show this again

Christmas Gift Guide
Phones

Christmas on the phone: Top 5 gifts for mobile phone lovers

A good accessory can take a mobile phone from awesome to epic. Check out our list of the gifts that will make you the best friend a phone can have

The right accessory can take a mobile phone from awesome to epic. Check out our list of the gifts that will make you the best friend a phone can have.

iPlayer obsessive: MiFi wireless modem

The MiFi wireless 3G modem means you'll never have to be without Wi-Fi again. Just pop a SIM card from 3 in and wherever there's 3G network coverage, the MiFi belches out a bubble of Wi-Fi that you can connect up to four devices to. That means free Wi-Fi on the train for your phone and laptop, as well as your mates'.

The MiFi is rechargable, smaller than a deck of cards, and takes a microSD card so you can also use it to share files over Wi-Fi without a computer. At 3Mbps, the Wi-Fi won't be as fast as normal broadband, but it's worth it for the iPlayer and Skype love you'll be getting when you'd otherwise be offline.

The MiFi is available on contract, but the pay as you go option is better for a gift. Spend £50 at the 3 Web site for the modem and a SIM for the lucky recipient to top up, or if you're feeling generous, pay £70 for one that includes 3GB pre-loaded.

Tone deaf: Phone-controlling headphones

With MP3 players and FM radios, phones are media players as well as call-makers. But the headphones that come with them are usually toilet. Invest in a pair of good-quality earbuds and save us all from listening to your favourite teenager's speakerphone on the Tube.

Most music phones come with a standard 3.5mm headphone socket or an adaptor that allows you to plug normal headphones into the phone's proprietary sockets. The adaptor will also include a hands-free microphone and controls, so you only need to pick up a decent pair of earphones to top it off. If you can plug headphones directly into the phone, it may be worth investing in some that can also work as a hands-free kit -- although a decent pair of cans will always be welcome, even if they don't control the phone.

Check out our article on affordable headphone upgrades for our recommendations on the best inexpensive earbuds. Etymotic hf2 sound-isolating headphones also work as a hands-free control for the iPhone, Palm Pre or BlackBerry, and give great sound. They aren't cheap though: they're £100 from the Apple Web site, but you do get custom-moulded ear gels for the ultimate in ear-hole fit.

Music mad: Spotify Premium subscription

Spotify lets you stream a huge chunk of all the music in the world -- and download it -- on to your mobile, and it's now available for iPhone, Android and Symbian phones. That means most Nokias can get into the music, as well as the Samsung i8910 HD and the Sony Ericsson Satio.

But you'll need a Spotify Premium subscription, which costs £10 for one month from the Spotify Web site.

Got your hands full: Jabra Stone

The Jabra Stone has something no other Bluetooth headset has -- it looks cool. It's sleek, smooth and small, with touch-sensitive volume buttons hidden on the surface. It fits together beautifully in its round portable charger, which allows you to get more battery life out of a very small headset. It supports A2DP, so you can listen to music on it as well as make calls.

It has some flaws -- the volume control can be hard to use, and it's not as loud as we'd like -- but it's awesomely comfortable and most importantly, won't make you look like a white van man.

The Jabra Stone is £100 from Carphone Warehouse, but it's worth shopping around.

Revive the iPhone: Mophie Juice Pack Air

We loved the Mophie Juice Pack, but it made the iPhone rather heavy. The Mophie Juice Pack Air is slimmer and sleeker, although it does sacrifice some battery time to make weight.

The Juice Pack Air pumps up the battery life of the iPhone 3G or iPhone 3GS to almost double, and it's perfect for road trips. The microUSB port means you can sync your phone without taking it out of the case, using a standard cable instead of Apple's custom one. And connecting the USB charges the phone and the battery, too.

The Mophie Juicepack Air is £63 from the Juice Pack Web site.