When a tablet for kids becomes a necessity

By: Neil Mitchell

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Thinking about a tablet for kids? You’re not alone. Parents are more accepting of getting a kids tablet for children under the age of 12, according to new studies. Previously, a child’s introduction to technology—to its wonders and to the potential risks of connected devices—came with the inevitable question for parents: What is the right time for my child’s first device?

This magical “right time” has been written about at length, debated by experts and fretted over by countless parents. Remote learning, however, has put many parents in the position of bypassing this decision-making rite of passage. The decision has been made for them. Like it or not, remote learning has accelerated many parents’ urgency to get their child’s first connected device.

Kid tablets are the first devices for many kids

According to Common Sense Media, 42% of U.S. kids ages 5–11 have a tablet of their own. A recent study by the Family Online Safety Institute (FOSI) also indicates that the tablet is a preferred device for parents (of children ages 7–11) who consider themselves the most heavily involved in their child’s device engagement.

Balancing the at-home learner and the games player

Many kid tablets are specifically designed to help with this transition, created with the intention of being a child’s first device. Using the TCL Tab Family Edition as an example, the information below demonstrates how tablets designed for children balance the needs of at-home learning and kids’ interest in features, apps and games with responsible parents’ needs of safety, security and control.


Design features with built-in kid-friendly controls

The basics of connectivity that allow for online learning and the timing of your own situation may put some parents in the position of introducing a child to the internet before they were prepared to do so. The TCL Tab Family Edition is currently available with three free months of the Verizon Smart Family suite of parental controls such as location tracking, content filtering, contact management, data limits and online usage reporting. Parents are also likely to appreciate the device’s volume limits, blue light feature and stand attachment that encourages an ideal viewing posture in its design.

Pre-loaded with edu-tainment

But will kids be happy with their tablet? Many kid tablets are pre-loaded with apps and games that kids love. The TCL Tab Family Edition includes a free year of Toca Life World, which lets kids create stories and build their own unique characters. It is also loaded with Sago Mini, a suite of games that build curiosity and imagination. These pre-loaded games and apps should ease parental concerns, as the particular virtual worlds inspire developing minds to be creative and thoughtful.

The TCL Tab Family Edition is intended for younger students, but there are a number of tablets that are designed to meet the needs of today’s students at any age. Take a look at your options and meet the need for remote learning with a kid tablet that has the right safety features and parental controls for your family.

Ready to parent in the age of screens? The Smart Family app is now compatible with Android tablets, so you can manage screen time, filter content, and smartphones and your kid tablets.

About the author:

Neil Mitchell is media consultant, focused on digital and online safety. He has been working with Verizon on online safety issues for over a decade.


Verizon's Parenting in a Digital World Portal publishes articles from a diverse set of authors with expertise across the digital safety spectrum. Contributors to the Portal are compensated by Verizon for their work.

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