Record-breaking cold this winter has challenged even the most obsessive mobile device users. But do you really want to risk frostbite just to tap out a short message or snap a picture of the frozen tundra? Enter touchscreen gloves, a.k.a. tech gloves, to the rescue. Although the high-end variety can cost upwards of $110 (Mujjo Leather Crochet, for example), we found many good options for less than $25.
Cheap touchscreen gloves are often made of a knit material and reviews indicate they aren't particularly warm. (Even some upmarket leather tech gloves don't suffice in the bitter cold). Tech gloves work best when they're fitted, especially at the finger tips, so one-size-fits-all varieties may be a poor choice for wearers with particularly small hands.
1. Xhilaration Tech Touch Gloves (starting at $3). Target's version of touchscreen gloves are compatible through the index finger and thumb. A single pair goes for $3 and a set of three for $9. These one-size-fits-all gloves may be cheap, but one reviewer reports they connect with touchscreens, fit snugly, and generally pass the warm and cozy test.
2. NuTouch Gloves (recommended MSRP $19.99; $10.79 on Amazon). These cheap tech gloves come in just one color (charcoal) and four sizes. They feature conductive thread in the tips of each finger, making them super-compatible with touchscreens of all sorts. A review at The Gadgeteer says they're fine for swiping, scrolling, and tapping and also do a decent job of keeping hands warm on chilly mornings but aren't well suited to really cold climes.
3. iTap Gloves ($20). iTap Gloves come fall into the one-style (black and gray stretch yarn) and one-size basket. iGeeksBlog considers this a good thing because there are no choices to be made. These budget-worthy touchscreen gloves contain conductive thread in the thumb, index and middle fingers and at the very least keep your palms and fingers from freezing.
4. Glove.ly Classic Winter Touchscreen Gloves (starting at $19.99). Made of an acrylic blend that is said to be slightly warmer than knit yarn, the Glove.ly Classic uses silver conductive thread throughout the entire glove for a uniform look and full-hand compatibility with touchscreens. Called a "clever" glove by Mashable, the Glove.ly Classic contains special magnet technology embedded under the logo to hold the pair together. It's available in small and medium/large.
5. Isotoner Smartouch Tech Stretch Gloves (starting at $20). At the top of the cheap price range, this pair from Isotoner may be better at warding off the cold than the cheap knit options. They're made from a fleece material with conductive thread on the thumb, index and middle fingers. In posts at Amazon users say they are warm and work well with their devices. They come in men's and women's styles and in various sizes and colors. A few wearers gripe about the tight fit.
There is one final option for getting your hands into tech gloves for less. If you're crafty or at least know how to sew a few stitches, just make your own. Buy a spool of conductive thread for about $13 and sew some into the thumb, index and middle fingers (or all if you so choose) on gloves you already own. Presto -- DIY touchscreen gloves.