A smartphone that's fit for a kid
Small children aren't exactly known for being careful with their belongings, so expecting them not to lose or drop a conventional smartphone may be asking a bit much. That's where myFirst Fone comes in – it's a compact 3G smartphone that's worn like a watch.
Using the device, children can place and receive voice and video calls to/from registered iOS or Android smartphones, plus they can receive text messages. Because there's no room on the phone's screen for a keypad, they reply to those texts via either emojis or voice messages.
Only approved contacts can place calls to the child, and all data is encrypted.
Parents can remotely track their kids' whereabouts using the watch's GPS (or using Wi-Fi signals indoors), and be notified if the child leaves a predetermined geofenced area. Children can also send an SOS with the touch of one button, plus parents can access the phone's mic to listen in on what's going on around their child, whenever they wish.
Other features include a silencing function that can be activated when the phone is in a classroom, a step counter, and the ability to take 1.3-megapixel photos. The watch itself is splashproof, and can reportedly run for up to 60 hours on one charge of its battery.
If you're interested in getting a myFirst Fone, it's currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign. A pledge of US$89 is required to get one, with shipping estimated for next March if everything works out. The planned retail price is $159.
There's more information in the following video.
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My absolute favorite is/was Tinitell. However their device is 2G only, which doesn't work in a 3G world (in Singapore).
The thing to avoid in these wrist phones is a big screen that gets damaged as kids go through the day, and lids/flaps/openings that let in water.
The pictures on the website of this device don't give a good feel for the performance of it, but on the upside the charging is with a magnetically attached connector, and they claim to be splash proof.
I don't know. I grew up with electronics (as they existed in the late 70's and early 80's), and I'd consider it a great experience.
What I would agree with is limiting exposure to any one activity, and making sure kids aren't engaged in flat brain wave stuff, such as watching Youtube or playing simplistic games.
As to these watches, their primary purpose is for parents to be able to know where their kids are and communicate with them when necessary. None of the devices I've seen have games and other brain rot inducing content on them. Presumably because the screen is small and the battery limited. So it's a safety tool.