Which kids’ smart watch is best?
More than 100 million Americans own smart watches. Once exotic wristwear and now must-have items, younger and younger kids are starting to wear smart watches. Smart watches that are designed specifically for kids are made to fit kid-sized wrists and withstand the abuse of kids at play.
Few parents want to pay for expensive, full-featured wrist computers. Instead, they opt for devices that tell them many different things about what their kids are up to. If you want a touch-screen smart watch that takes photos and videos, you might like the VTech Kidizoom Smartwatch DX.
What to know before you buy a kids’ smart watch
Peace of mind
Parents have several good reasons for buying a smart watch for their kids. Kids are always on the go and when they are wearing smart watches with GPS functions, parents can know where they are. Smart watches with active emergency services allow kids to send distress signals quickly.
Parents can set limits for their kids’ smart watches for who is on the kids’ contact lists, time limits for game playing, access to only approved websites and purchasing permission thresholds.
The right technology
Kids live in an always-on world. Whether you are an Android family or an iOS family, get your kids smart watches that are compatible with the operating systems of your computers and mobile devices.
Smart watches are great activity monitors. Kids using smart watches with screen time alerts set by their parents are reminded to get outside, be more active and meet step goals.
When kids have smart watches with tracking and safety features, parents are more willing to let them be on their own, which builds children’s confidence and makes them feel that you trust them. For more information, take a look at the full kids’ smart watch buying guide from BestReviews.
What to look for in a quality kids’ smart watch
All smart watches tell the time. Some also have timers and stopwatches. You will occasionally find smart watches that have changeable watch faces and the option of displaying the time digitally or in analog form. Similarly, smart watches that are text-enabled will also let kids text mom and dad.
Parents who’d like to know where their kids are should look for smart watches that have a tracking function. These GPS features come in many smart watches and other devices and can be particularly helpful in keeping track of kids, especially when on trips or camping expeditions.
Smart watches for kids rarely have all the features found in adult smart watches. Instead, they perform certain selected functions, often at lower levels than those found in adult smart watches. How many of these functions you get is up to you.
Some kids don’t like the idea of being tracked. When their smart watch has games, puzzles and activities built-in, they wear it so they can take their entertainment with them everywhere. Many also come with built-in media players. Kids love smart watches that play music, movies and TV.
Still and video cameras are popular features on kids’ smart watches as well. Kid’s love these features even more when the smart watch allows them to apply special effects to pictures and videos.
Fitness and activity
What started the smart watch craze was the fitness trackers that counted the number of steps you took during the day. High-end fitness trackers monitor heart rate, pulse, body temperature and calories burned. Fitness trackers can also be found in kids’ smart watches, sometimes with fewer functions that place more emphasis on fun activities than meeting step counts.
Other kids’ smart watches will let you track different kinds of activities. Parents like how they can use basic behavior modification principles to assign chores that reward kids when they complete their tasks.
When you load contact information into the child’s smart watch, it is there in case of emergency. Some smart watches have SOS buttons that call pre-programmed numbers in case of emergency.
How much you can expect to spend on kids’ smart watch
Basic smart watches for kids cost anywhere from $30-$50. Higher-end smart watches with more features can run well over $100.
Kids’ smart watch FAQ
What exactly is a smart watch?
A. A smart watch is an Android or iOS computer you wear on your wrist which has the basic look and feel of a traditional watch. It uses touchscreens and associated smartphone apps to play games and perform basic tasks like making phone calls and sending instant messages. Smart watches grew in popularity when biological monitoring features became commonplace. Now you can do almost everything on a full-featured smart watch that you can do on a computer.
What is the difference between a smart watch for kids and a smart watch for adults?
A. Smart watches for kids generally are less expensive, have fewer features, are more entertainment-oriented and made to be more durable and rugged.
What’s the best kids’ smart watch to buy?
Top kids’ smart watch
What you need to know: This touch screen, full-featured smart watch takes photos and videos and adds image and voice effects.
What you’ll love: This smart watch has a timer, a stopwatch, an alarm and a calculator. Kids will wear it because it includes games, action challenges, fun activities and more than 50 clock face designs. The lithium-ion battery is rechargeable with the same micro USB cable used to upload photos and videos.
What you should consider: This watch is designed for younger kids.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top kids’ smart watch for the money
What you need to know: All the functions are built into this smart watch, so there is no need to connect to a cell phone or download an app.
What you’ll love: This touchscreen smart watch has an emergency SOS key that calls pre-programmed numbers in emergency situations. It has a camera, calendar, games, puzzles, an alarm clock and a music player. It has a 400mAh battery that recharges via the included USB cable.
What you should consider: To make calls with this smart watch, you need a separate SIM card.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
What you need to know: Parents use the Garmin Jr app to assign tasks, schedule alerts and alarms and reward kids for good behavior.
What you’ll love: Parents can use this smart watch to assign chores and track their kids’ activities. This smart watch motivates kids to achieve goals that unlock entertaining app adventures and games. This swim-friendly fitness tracker goes up to a year without recharging.
What you should consider: Parents need to install the Garmin Jr app on their smartphones.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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David Allan Van writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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