What is his budget all up?
I doubt that he will want to shell out $200+ for a half decent grinder and then another 3 or 4 hundred on an appliance.
And given your question about the $300 range, I'm equally sure he ain't gonna plump for the EM7000
If it goes anything like the conversations I have with people when they ask what they should get, they listen intently to my advice, then go and buy a pod machine, then try to tell me how good it is after they have bought it. I call these people "Somebody that I used to know".
I'm sure his Mum will love the pod machine that he ends up buying.