Looking to wrestle back the iPad from the clutches of your kids? TabTimes looks at five excellent (and affordable) Android tablets for young children.
Toys 'R' Us Tabeo
U.S. toy retailer Toys 'R' Us is coming to the tablet game with the Tabeo, a 7-inch Android tablet which is due to launch on October 21.
On specs alone, the Tabeo looks like a solid device. The tablet has a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen display, runs Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and offers front and rear-facing cameras, as well as 4GB of expandable memory and a HDMI port. The battery life is reasonable too at 10 hours for Internet browsing and up to 7 hours for video content.
Toys 'R' Us says that the WiFi-only tablet will come pre-loaded with over 50 apps, while another 6,000 free educational programs, games and books will be available from the Tabeo app store.
LeapFrog LeapPad 2
Following on from the success of the original LeapPad tablet, and LeapFrog launched the LeapPad 2 -- an upgraded model with two cameras, a more powerful processor (550MHz versus 393MHz on the original) and more memory (4GB rather than 2GB).
As with the first model, the 5-inch tablet (480 x 272 resolution display) comes with a stylus so children can write or draw on the educational apps, while users can tap into Leapfrog's library of 325 game cartridges, apps, videos and music.
The tablet comes pre-loaded with five fun apps; Pet Pad (essentially looking after a digital pet), Cartoon Director (making your own cartoon with pictures of friends and family), LeapFrog Learning Songs and Art Studio.
There are some handy tools for parents too, namely the LeapFrog Learning Path which shows how children are playing and learning on the tablet. This feature shows where the child is excelling or needs to improve, and can send all these details out via email.
The tablet is available for $99.99, with the original LeapPad dropping to $79.99. Both tablets are suited for those aged between 3 and 9 years old.
VTech InnoTab 2
Perhaps the biggest LeapPad competitor comes from VTech, with its 5-inch InnoTab 2 tablet.
This tablet allows users to set up a profile, delve into pre-loaded apps (there are 15) and games, as well as enjoy other features like the music player, photo viewer, art studio and digital coloring book.
Parents can add eBooks and apps by buying cartridges at $24.99 each, while there’s a rotating front and back camera for taking still photos and videos. There’s a microphone that can be used for games and apps as well as video recording, and a kick-stand so youngsters don’t always have to hold the slate.
The VTech InnoTab 2 is now available for $79.99 from VTech, Amazon and Toys 'R' Us.
LA-based company Nabi recently released its second Android tablet, the nabi 2, which promises some neat features including Ice Cream Sandwich and tight parental controls.
The nabi 2 comes with a 1024 x 600 resolution 7-inch display, a quad-core Tegra 3 processor and 8GB of storage, Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich) and 8GB of memory, while there are also parental controls to check usage and a soft rubber case to protect the tablet from small drops.
As with the aforementioned tablets, the nabi 2 offers a raft of ‘mom-approved’ games and apps, while there’s an educational section called ‘Fooz Kids University’ to help children master topics like maths, science, social studies and English.
There’s even a ‘Chore List’ which details what chores kids must complete before they can play games. The nabi 2 is available for $199.99 from Wal-Mart and Best Buy.
Back in May, French tablet vendor Archos released the ChildPad – a 7-inch model with Android 4.0, a 1GHz processor, 1GB of RAM, and a respectable price of $199.
There are 28 apps pre-installed and for more, parents and children can download from the AppsLib Kids App Store, which boasts around 10,000 apps for games, multimedia, books, comics, and sport.
Furthermore, Archos provides parental controls and safe web browsing via a six-month trial to Editions Profil’s Mobile Parental Filter.