Best Android tablets for kids 2012

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Kids love touchscreens. They are accessible and intuitive to use. That makes tablets ideal for learning and for play. The Android platform offers some really great apps for kids and manufacturers are starting to see the potential for dedicated child-friendly devices. That means you can reclaim your Galaxy S3 or your Nexus 7 and keep the kids happy with a tablet of their own.We thought we’d take a look at some of the dedicated Android tablets for kids that are now hitting the market. It’s worth considering one for your child for a number of reasons. They can help children to learn about various subjects, improve their motor skills, spark their creativity, and keep them amused on road trips or while you cook dinner.The question is – are these dedicated child-friendly Android tablets worth getting as opposed to a standard Android tablet with the right collection of apps? Considering that you can install parental control apps and limit what your kids do with a standard Android tablet, the limitations of dedicated tablets for kids might be enough to make you think twice. Let’s take a closer look at what’s on offer.

Tabeo ($150)
The Tabeo looks like a kid’s toy and it comes with a range of brightly colored plastic frames for that 7-inch screen. It also comes with parental controls and 50 pre-installed apps. There’s no access to Google Play so new apps have to be acquired through the Tabeo App Store which has around 7,000 to choose from right now. Even at $150 this isn’t a great tablet.


Archos ChildPad ($140)

You might be getting a sense of déjà vu because the Archos ChildPad is virtually identical to the Tabeo. The original ChildPad was $10 cheaper, but it had a resistive touchscreen, this updated version has a capacitive touchscreen and it works much better. It also comes with a bunch of pre-installed apps including Alvin & The Chipmunks 3 content thanks to some kind of deal with 20th Century Fox. There’s a clunky interface, parental controls, and a kid friendly app store with around 10,000 apps and games in it. This is tough to recommend.

Kurio 7 ($150)
A colorful rubber bumper, parental controls, and a batch of pre-installed apps combined with a decent set of specs make the Kurio a good option in this price bracket. The interface isn’t the most intuitive in the world and there’s no Google Play, just the limited Kurio App Store. There is an adult mode and kids might enjoy taking snaps with the rear-facing camera. If you can scrape together another $50 then you should skip this.

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