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Five Gift Ideas from Online Office Supply Stores

Looking to avoid the crowds by shopping online? You re in luck! Many stores are offering special deals for online shoppers during the holiday season. Office supply stores are no exception. For example, our top-rated site Office Depot is running an  Every Friday is Black Friday  promotion, offering special discounts every Friday in the month of December. Online stores offer a wider product selection and special discounts not available in retail outlets.

1. GPS Systems

We all love electronics, but even if you can t afford to buy your husband a brand new computer this year, there are a lot of options that will make him just as happy. For example, for the man who hates to stop and ask for directions but still manages to get lost, how about a GPS? The new GPS receivers are thinner, sleeker and more accurate than those that came out a few years ago. Most now have voice recognition and traffic updates. Add an element of fun by choosing a GPS with several different voice options. The new TOMTOM has a Homer Simpson option.

View the TopTenREVIEWS comparison of Navigation GPS Systems to see which systems we recommend.

2. Wireless Peripherals

There are also a lot of products to enhance an existing computer system, such as a wireless mouse and keyboard set or new speakers with headphones. For anyone who types a lot, an ergonomic keyboard provides hand relief by placing the keys at a slight outward angle that accommodates the natural curve of the wrists. Even laptops are compatible with external keyboards and mice. Aside from the essentials, you can find a lot of fun USB-powered toys and accessories.

3. Voice Recognition Program (You talk, it types.)

Know someone who hates to type? How about a dictation program like Dragon Naturally Speaking? These programs come with a microphone, and after a short calibration period allow you to do away with the pain of typing. Simply speak into the microphone and the program does the rest. As you make corrections to the typed text, the program stores the corrections and never makes the same error again. Check out our reviews of the best voice recognition software to find the best options.

4. Multifunction Machines

Know someone who buys a lot of ink jet refills? How about a new laser printer/copier/fax machine that only needs refills once or twice a year? These multifunction machines use large toner cartridges in place of ink jets and as the technology has improved, you can now find better office machines at lower prices. They print more quickly and with better quality than inkjet printers. For students, writers or even those people who randomly print out stuff they see online, this makes a great gift. For camera bugs, you may want to find a version that prints photographs as well. Don t forget the photo paper!

5. External Hard Drive

One of the main reasons people upgrade computers is that they run out of storage space on the hard drive. So, instead of spending upwards of $1,000 or more on a new computer, how about an external hard drive? For under $200 you can find one that offers over 100 GB of space, another whole computer s worth of storage. These hard drives plug into any USB port and generally require no installation. The external hard drive is also great for backing up computer data and saving yourself from data loss in the event of a virus, hardware failure, or even theft. For anyone who downloads a lot of music or takes a lot of digital pictures, this makes a truly great gift.

Check out our office supply reviews for the best places to shop online.

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