Year round, the trend scouts at Identity Works scour the country, seeking out the best and newest in branded swag, apparel, and corporate gifts. My Favorite Things segments unpack their findings as they report on the best-of-the-best in different branded products and their popular uses. Read on to learn about our latest discoveries in the branded tech world and why we love them for working from home!
The “wireless earbud in a charging case” fad started in 2019 and continues to run strong. While we have a lot of options at our disposal for clients that are looking for branded earbuds (including Apple AirPods), BluPods are my favorite pick. These wireless earbuds take about 1 minute to set up the first time and have some great features that make them my go-to for music while I’m working or on the go.
Why they’re great:
- Fit: Unlike some other earbuds I’ve tried, BluPods are actually pretty comfortable. They also do a great job of staying in your ears even when they’re not perfectly positioned — a must if you’re wearing them while doing something active, like jogging.
- Pairing: They have a slick auto-on/auto-pair feature, which turns the earbuds on and pairs them to the first available previously paired device when you take them out of the case – the true wireless connection and Bluetooth connection takes about 5 seconds. For instances when you need to be able to hear the outside world, you can also use a single earbud in mono, without having to do any new syncing or pairing.
- Sound Quality: The sound quality with these earbuds is extremely good. Dual-speaker positioning on each piece allows listeners to get a full range of sound, even at low volumes.
- Microphone: The microphone does a nice job, as well, making these a great option for those of us who are now working remotely and need to be hands-free on phone and video chats.
- Branding Space: From a branding perspective, not only is the imprint area on the charging case generous, it can be customized to your company’s style with either spot colors or full-color digital.
With a price around $30, BluPods aren’t “freebie giveaways” by any means, but I see them as a strong option for wellness programs or as a versatile tool that works well for both work and play. Learn more about Blupods here.
Blue Light Blocking Glasses
Numerous studies have found that the blue light emitted by all of the screens in our life can cause eye strain and interfere with our sleep patterns. These blue light blocking glasses are a popular universal giveaway that now has extra value for your remote team, as these folks are likely spending more time than ever in front of their screens.
Why they’re great:
- Consistent View: These durable ABS glasses offer minimal color distortion, offering a more natural/native view of colors than the blue light filters built into phones or laptops.
- Custom Branding Options: In addition to the imprint on the temple of these glasses, you can also add your company’s custom design on the cello bags in which they are packaged, making it a great gift experience if you are sending them out by mail.
Learn more about the Blue Light Blocking Glasses here.
PhoneSoap® UV Light Sanitizer
We all have a lot of devices these days, and they’re all gross. Seriously. Electronics are almost never cleaned or disinfected properly due to concerns about damaging the internal components, and when you think about how often (and where) you’re looking at your phone… *shudder*. That’s where the PhoneSoap Sanitizer comes in. As the third generation brother of the device that originally took Shark Tank by storm and was tested on Mythbusters, this UV sanitizer is now more relevant than ever. Just to be clear, this product has not been tested on coronavirus. But it has been tested on other enveloped-type viral strains like Influenza A and was found to be 99.9% effective.
Why it’s great:
- Ease of Use: Simply place your device in the PhoneSoap unit, close the lid, and wait for the blue indicator light to turn off, letting you know the job is done and your phone is good to use again.
- The Size: The compact size of the PhoneSoap UV Light Sanitizer makes it easy to place on a desk or counter, can accommodate most cell phones or small items like keys, wallets, credit cards, etc. And, if the size of the PhoneSoap isn’t big enough, we also have its big brother the Germbuster, which is large enough to fit tablets, remote controls, and even smaller laptops!
- It’s Dual-Purpose: It can also be used as a charging station while it’s cleaning your items.
- Branding Space: The decoration area is generous on the top of the lid, keeping your name front and center.
Learn more about the PhoneSoap Sanitizer here.
PowR 2.0 Qi Charger/Phone Stand
If you have team members suddenly working remotely, it’s likely they’re now using their cell phone to take incoming calls and video chats. Help them keep their device handy and charged with our upgraded PowR Stand. With no setup charges and no minimum order quantities, it’s a great option whether you need just a couple, or to outfit a whole team! Learn more.
Why it’s great:
- Multiple Charging Options: As a Qi certified wireless charger, the PowR will work with any phone that supports wireless charging. For phones that don’t support wireless charging, the stand also offers a USB output for plugging in a charging cable.
- It’s Dual-Purpose: Not only is it a phone charger, the PowR Stand also acts as a phone stand (with a gel dome imprint that provides some extra sticking power), keeping your phone readily accessible and stationary, which is ideal for video calls.
- Brand Visibility: Your company branding is front and center when the stand isn’t in use.
Braided Long Cable
Speaking of team members using their own devices… have you ever noticed that the cable that came with your phone or tablet never seems to be long enough to comfortably use it while charging? The Braided Long Cable is an inexpensive and universal fix for cables that are just too short. It works like a USB extension cord – just plug it into your power source (wall charger, power bank, etc.), and then plug your device cable into the other end, and BAM!, you have 6 extra feet of cable real estate. Learn more.
Why it’s great:
- Durable: This cable is made with braided fabric for great flexibility and durability.
- Universal: Not all remote workers are blessed with the perfect workspace. Some may even find their outlet situation to be less than ideal for their workspace. Not only can this cable get the power where it’s needed, it offers full support for charging, syncing, and data transfer.
- Branding Options: The Braided Long cable is available in 5 colors, and features your logo imprinted on the USB receiver end (where the user’s device cable plugs in).
Looking for more top picks? Check out our Staff’s Top Work-From-Home Apparel Picks and 2020’s Top 8 Custom Branded Product Picks
This post was originally published on July 8, 2016, updated July 29, 2020 with current trends and products.