Google has started working on a new initiative to revamp the user experience for users of its services that are 12 years old and younger. Although no specifics have been released, it seems likely that widely tapped tools like YouTube, search and the Chrome browser will be first up sometime in 2015. The VP of engineering in charge of the project, Pavni Diwanji, says there is a “push to change our products to be fun and safe for children.”
Chris Lacy, developer of other fantastic apps including Action Launcher and Link Bubble, has released his newest app on the Play Store. The app is called HomeTube and is designed to create a kid-friendly environment for your children to browse YouTube videos without you having to keep an eye on what they’re looking at.
The app itself is a pretty simple concept. You can pick from different search terms on YouTube and HomeTube only displays that specific content. Kids will be able to quickly jump around between different videos based on the pre-selected content, so you won’t have to navigate around for them, either.
Next time your kid wanders off at the amusement park, you won’t have to worry.
LG introduced the “KizOn” wearable device yesterday, which is cellular-equipped and allows parents to track the location of their toddlers. The wristband has the capability to call pre-programmed phone numbers with a single phone number as well, and parents can also call the wristband to check on their kids.
We all know how hard it is to hand over your brand new tablet to your wide-eyed kid or younger sibling, but when we do, why not make sure there are age-appropriate applications on the device? Instead of having them stare mindlessly into a game of Angry Birds, why not have them play something educational?
Fortunately there are plenty of great apps for kids available on the Play Store, and many are even free. Whether you’re looking for an enjoyable experience learning to read or an exciting game to teach your kids math, these apps open up a new world of learning through technology.
To help you weed out the apps that won’t entertain and enrich kids, we’ve created a list of my top five educational apps and games that kids are sure to enjoy. Be sure to let us know about what apps your kids enjoy in the comments!
Everyone is trying to get in on the tablet phenomenon. The craze has everyone and their mom salivating after a slate of glass and plastic, so manufacturers are capitalizing on the demand. Today, Polaroid even released a tablet for your kids. The durable, 7-inch tablet seems to be nameless at this time, but boasts some decent specs: a 1gHz processor, 512 MB of RAM, 8 gigabytes of internal storage, an SD card slot for additional space, and of course wifi, so your kids can browse the web and download new content. Amazingly the device is running Android 4.0 but does not have access to the Google Play store, so that your kids can’t get their hands on the wrong content. In place of the Google Play store, Polaroid has created a kid-safe app store, and has even loaded the tablet up with some kid-friendly apps and books to get you started. All of this comes at a fairly low $150 price tag, so if you messed up with the Christmas gifts, you might be able to make it up to your kids with one of these. You can pick one up at the source link below.
Source: Polaroid Store
Looks like the average age of tablet users will be lowering with companies like ViNCi and Toys “R” Us prepping kid-friendly slates. The latest comes from Oregon Scientific and is called the MEEP! tablet. According to the press release, this tablet will have a 7-inch color touch-screen, Wi-Fi, a G-Sensor, SD card slot, and parental controls. No word yet on what version of Android will be on board.
The MEEP! is said to offer movies, music, e-books, and apps from from leading developers, the latter making us think it will not have direct access to the Android Market. Accessories for the kiddie-slate will be offered, including musical instruments, which I’m sure will make every parent jump for joy. Ear-plugs were not mentioned as a potential accessory. The full unveiling is happening at the TIA Toy Fair in New York, which runs from now until February 15th. Full press release after the break.
Aww, isn’t this cute. A kid friendly, adult approved Android tablet. While this isn’t the first children’s Android tablet we have seen, App developer FUHU has teamed up with the worlds target toy store, Toys R Us, and created another budget friendly Android tablet for children. This time around we bring you the Nabi tablet. The Nabi is a tablet meant for fun and education and features a “kiddie” UI on top of the Android OS and allows the little ones to safely surf the web, watch movies, read books and have access to various educational applications. And after the kids have gone to bed, parents can commandeer the Nabi, enter a secret password, and unlock the tablet for a more traditional Android experience. Sounds like a gift with benefits to me!
The Nabi tablet has specs that may baffle some parents and could make some Android tablet owners jealous. The screen is a 7-inch, 800×480 resolution display and can playback video at 1080p HD. Pretty sweet, huh? Lemme finish. The unit is powered by a 533MHz dual-core Cortex-A9 processor with a PowerVR SGX530 GPU that allows for 3D gaming. There is a 3,000mAh battery that supposedly provides up to 5 hours of non-stop Barney watching, or whatever it is these kids are watching these days. Your child we also be able to visit TalkAndroid.com to keep abreast on all the latest Android news via Wi-Fi, and a front facing camera will aid in video chat for those times when you are out of town on business.
The family friendly version of the Motorola Xoom, dubbed the Motorola Xoom Family Edition, has been officially announced as a Best Buy exclusive and will go on sale October 16th for $379. The tablet is meant for versatile use by all members of the family, enabling mom and dad to use it in the office with clients by day and cuddled up on couch with their kids at night. It’s pre-installed Zoodles application also allows parents to freely hand over the device to the kids, free from worry over inappropriate content. The price will only last for a limited time, so check out these specs and get it on your holiday list early.
- Runs on Android 3.1, built specifically for tablets
- 1GHz dual-core processor for lightning-fast responsiveness
- 10.1” HS IPS HD screen display with capacitive multi-touch
- 5MP back camera with flash, with 720p video webcam
- Preloaded with almost $40 worth of applications, plus Zoodles™, the award-winning Kid Mode application
- Preloaded with MotoPack by Motorola XOOM (App Downloader by Motorola)
- Preloaded with Quickoffice™ Pro HD for seamless productivity at work
- Preloaded with MotoPrint – the application that allows you to print straight from the Web browser
- Preloaded with fun games like Asphalt 6 from Gameloft and SIM City Deluxe
- 16GB built-in memory
- Battery lasts up to 10 hours for video playback and Web browsing
- Access to more than 250,000 apps in Android Market™
Hit the break for Motorola’s full press release.
Are your kids getting to that age where they want to go sans-parents when they go trick or treating? Obviously letting your kids go to the neighborhood houses without you is definitely a concern, but what if you could track them remotely?
That’s the idea behind Trick or Tracker, a cleverly named Halloween-themed app from Iconosys. So how exactly does Trick or Tracker work? Just watch the video after the break.
How many times has this happened to you? You lock your phone and then give it to your kid(s) to play with, thinking “Oh it’ll be fine, they won’t unlock it.” Then as soon as you get your phone back, you’ve called your ex twice, sent 15 random text messages, and your phone language is now set to Korean. So much for that lock screen eh?
Anyone who has kids will know exactly what I’m talking about. Enter Toddler Lock. Toddler Lock is an interactive lock screen that keeps your phone actually locked, while allowing them to safely play with your phone. Whether it’s shapes or just random scribbles, Toddler Lock will keep them entertained the whole car ride home.
Rate & download: Toddler Lock (Free)