Christmas tech: Santa trackers and websites to stoke the seasonal cheer

Get stalking Santa’s sleigh

Photograph: iStock

Photograph: iStock


Twas the night before the night before Christmas. So it’s time to enjoy a little bit of seasonal cheer. If you still have children in the house who are hanging on Santa’s very move, here are a few apps and sites to help stoke the excitement.

Google Santa Tracker

Google’s Santa Tracker kicks off in December, giving you a place to visit daily to see how things are going in the North Pole. From learning how to code to brushing up on the holiday traditions around the world, there is plenty to keep you (and children) occupied during the dark evenings.

On December 24th, things change. The village becomes a way to track Santa on his journey around the world - a journey that apparently takes 25 hours, not including reindeer rest breaks, we assume.

Norad Santa Tracker

Once Christmas Eve really kicks off though, the traditional place to track Santa is Norad. The defence agency agency has been doing this for about 60 years, and before it, the task was carried out by the Continental Air Defence Command, so it takes the task very seriously. There is even a Twitter account that delivers updates as Santa hits a new territory.


It wouldn’t be Chreistmas without someone wearing a dodgy hat and doing some seriously bad dancing. These days, you don’t even have to do it in person to find your reputation for smooth dancefloor moves is being sullied. Elf Yourself lets you upload a photo (of you or someone else, it’s not fussy) and superimpose it onto some dancing elves. Get the right photo and it’s very realistic - and hilarious. You can do it through the website or app for both Android and Apple devices.

Portable North Pole

Before the internet, the best you could hope for in terms of personal Santa contact was a reply to your letter with your name filled in. Now, you can have your own personalised video from the man himself, or a personalised phone call for your child. Santa talks directly to them, and you can submit all the information necessary for Santa through the Portable North Pole app on your phone. Some features are premium, but you can pay for a single call with a message such as “child of the week”, or pay for all the premium features for €13 for the year.