Kids love gadgets as much as adults, maybe even more, so it's no surprise the idea of having their own smartwatch gets kids excited. Choosing what watch to get for your child can be daunting, with so many choices out there. Aside from wading through all the options, it's also important to consider privacy, durability, and cost when looking at the choices. One watch that does a great job of these core features is the Coolpad Dyno (opens in new tab). There are a lot of choices out there, so let us help you find the best option for you and your child.
While the brand Coolpad may not be all that familiar to you, its watch should is one that should be considered when looking for an excellent smartwatch for your child. The Dyno from Coolpad is not only a fun looking device, but it also has some great features to help keep you connected with your child and let them have some fun.
The Dyno can connect via Wi-Fi but also has a SIM card so that it can fully function as a phone. Coolpad has a companion app for the parent to add specific contacts that the child can both call and message. Your kid can either send messages by choosing one of the preset options which you can customize in the app, or by using the voice to text feature on the watch. Phone calls work as you would expect and can be made using the SIM card that connects to networks in the US and Canada. Also on the watch included is GPS, in which you can set up geofences so that you can be notified when the watch enters or leaves a predetermined area.
The watch has some fun watch faces that your child can swap between as well as two different colored straps in the box. There are some fitness tracking features as well that helps to incentivize being active. Something else that this watch has is excellent battery life, with nearly three days between charges. You'll also get a notification when the battery is low should your child forget to charge it. While it's not perfect, the Coolpad Dyno is a fun device for kids and a great peace of mind for parents.
TickTalk 3 is another watch with a ton of features for parents and kids alike. Much like the Coolpad Dyno, this watch comes with a SIM card — operating on T-Mobile or AT&T networks — and Wi-Fi for connectivity. You get the ability to connect to your child with voice, text, emojis, and photos.
This watch has the addition of a front-facing camera so that you and your child can exchange photos and even video chat — with all of the communication happening within the dedicated watch/phone app. There is an option to turn on a full phone dialer for the watch, but you also can set up a firewall in the app so that only certain contacts can make calls and send messages to the watch.
The TickTalk 3 watch also gets route tracking, this allows you to see where your child has been and their traveled path. There is also a "Do Not Disturb" option to keep all notifications off to save from the child getting distracted. A unique feature for the watch is that there's the ability to set reminders for your child with 60 preset options to help your kid stay on task. The watch comes in a couple of different colors with interchangeable velcro straps to help you customize along with a variety of watch faces.
Garmin is a well-known brand in both navigation and smartwatches; here, they created a fun fitness tracker for kids with the vívofit jr. 2. The object of this watch is to inspire activity with daily activity tracking and friendly competition through step challenges by syncing with nearby friends. This feature lets your child connect with friends who have the vívofit jr. 2 and have timed step challenges; these can also be done individually.
The vívofit jr. 2 smart band also lets you set tasks and reminders for your kid within the parent app. You can set them as a one-time event or recurring with little rewards for completing the tasks as well. With in the app, you'll also be able to see their progress in tasks, steps, and even sleep patterns.
The vívofit jr. 2 comes in a variety of character themes from Frozen 2 and Minnie Mouse, to Avengers and Star Wars that have corresponding themed activities and challenges within the app for your child to complete. The vívofit jr. 2 is water-resistant to 5 ATM and has up to a year of battery life. While this device may not have the full gamut of features found in the Coolpad Dyno or TickTalk 3, it is still a fun way for your child to get active and be responsible.
Instead of a tool for connecting to a smartphone, VTech created an experience that is mostly toy but partially useful. Amid all the games and onboard camera tricks, you'll find a functional calendar for appointments, a voice memo app, and several other tools that work well with the smartwatch aesthetic. This is a great way to get kids thinking about using technology for more than entertainment without completely pulling them away from the shiny world of fun things.
Smartwatches are already luxury accessories, and for kids, they become little more than toys. VTech's smartwatch for kids has a few games but also lets them take photos from their wrist and have some fun with the photos. It's a fun way for a kid to emulate their smartwatch-wearing parent without needing to be tethered to a smartphone, and it includes some tools that could be useful. Calendar access, for example, gives you a teaching opportunity. Calculator apps let children explore math on their own. There's plenty of fun to be had here, but the need to charge the watch regularly to use it and the availability of actually useful apps could become tools for teaching children how to care for their hardware and use it properly.
If you are looking for a watch your child will enjoy using that will also give you some peace of mind, then you can't go wrong with the Coolpad Dyno. It is a well-built piece of technology that only looks nice but has some wonderful features. Since it has a SIM card in addition to Wi-Fi connectivity, you and your child will be able to communicate as needed. You will also have the added benefit of creating GPS geofence areas to alert you when your child enters and exits. While the device isn't cheap, it is a great all-in-one communication device for your child that will be much harder to lose than a phone.
There could be some refinements such as it would be helpful if there was a keyboard on the watch, though tiny, it would be helpful in situations where the canned responses weren't enough, and voice dictation is inappropriate. The software could use some cleaning up, but it gets the basics right. The Coolpad Dyno still gets so much right. So, whether you want to be able to ensure your child is where they should be as well as be able to talk to them, there are options for that. If all you want is to introduce your child to some wearable tech, then there's that too.