Gifts for the person who’d rather listen to podcasts than talk to you

La la la la I can’t hear you.

guy wearing headphones in an office
What's that? Can't hear you.Austin Distel via Unsplash

Podcasts! Everyone is listening to one. Or recording one for other people to listen to. Or, most likely, recording one that no one will listen to. They’re everywhere, blessing us with the gift of hands-free entertainment we need to power through life’s monotony.

But there’s a darker side to podcasts... and I’m not talking about their murder-y content. I’m talking about how they tend to drive an AirPod-shaped wedge between friends and loved ones, invading their precious time together. Are you on the wrong side of one of these podcast-divided relationships? Well, there’s nothing to be done about it. Might as well buy your special podcast-loving someone a gift that further fuels their addiction. Sucks.

I’m kidding, of course. But these gifts for podcast fans are pretty great. And if you buy them for your beloved pod addict, and it turns your relationship around, that would make for a fascinating segment on This American Life.

Charging hub

powerstation hub - Portable Battery hub with Foldable AC Power prongs

mophie powerstation hub

Order that juice to go.Amazon

Lest your favorite podcast fan be forced to begrudgingly engage you in conversation when their mobile devices run out of juice, give them some backup power for the road. Mophie’s powerstation hub has all the ports needed to charge mobile devices. Plus its fold-out AC charge prongs make it extra portable—no extra cables or janky edges fumbling around in your bag. Adding to the portability factor, the hub’s rubberized, non-slip wireless charging surface lets you simply rest your devices on the hub to get an extra zap, great for working in a tight space like a coffee shop table that doesn’t have room for extraneous cables. Works with all Qi-enabled devices, including AirPods.

Wireless headphones

Bose Noise Cancelling Wireless Bluetooth Headphones 700

Bose Noise Cancelling Wireless Bluetooth Headphones 700

Screaming babies and loud co-workers are CANCELED.Amazon

Your voice will never penetrate these! There are tons of ”noise-canceling” options at this point. So it takes an extra technological leap to stand out, and Bose’s new smart headphones have the goods. There’s a reason we named the Bose Headphones 700 one of the best innovations of 2019: a total of eight microphones around your ears keep everything in balance, which will come in handy when your special someone needs to call you without letting the outside world in. Also, they’re Alexa-enabled.

Bluetooth speaker

Sonos Move Bluetooth Speaker

Sonos Move Bluetooth Speaker

Sometimes you need a little distance from the voices in your head.Amazon

Of course it would be more polite for your beloved podcast fan to keep those conversations between their favorite podcast host and her guest firmly between their ears, but sometimes they need to let loose and strut down the street ‘80s boombox style, blasting Terry Gross from their shoulder. Or maybe they’re sitting in their office, and just want to let their ears breathe a bit.Whatever the reason for going *headphones off*, the Sonos Move is a great solution. A cavity in the back creates a handle for easy carrying, and Sonos put an impressive amount of sound engineering into this package—its Trueplay calibration system listens to the speaker itself and adjusts to its surroundings, giving you the best sound for whatever room (or outdoor space) you’ve moved into.

Bike mount

Bone Universal Bike Phone Mount

Bone Universal Bike Phone Mount

The best strap for your app.Amazon

Podcasts are a great way to inject stories and conversations into otherwise monotonous tasks: exercise, commutes, grocery shopping, etc. To take full advantage, your special podcast addict will need a versatile mount to keep those listens at their fingertips. Bone Collection’s Bike Tie Series keeps it simple with a one-piece design that straps onto bike or motorcycle handlebars, grocery carts, strollers, and anything else you’re pushing or peddling.

Streaming service

Audible membership

Audible membership

Tired of podcasts? Turn the page.Amazon

Your favorite podcast addict has mastered the art of listening on the go, so why not give them something a little different to pump into their ears? Something longer and more immersive, that won’t have them reaching for the skip button during ad breaks. Maybe a medium preloaded with thousands of years of content. Yeah, I’m talking about books! An Audible subscription is so much more than audiobooks at this point. In addition to their monthly credit (usable on any book in Audible’s unparalleled library, no matter the length or price), members can now select two free Audible Originals, many of which are basically high-quality podcast series. A slate of exclusive audio wellness programs are also available to members. The Audible app is great, with bookmarks and a strong recommendation engine, and your books sync across devices for seamless listening from car to phone to Alexa-powered smart speaker. The exchange program is also surprisingly low-maintenance: if you burn a credit on a book that you’re just not happy with, simply stop listening and trade it in for something better.