While a new tablet launch isn’t breaking news anymore, there’s one that’s unlike any other yet to be released—it’s a full-fledged mobile computing device for kids ages 3 to 10 that lets them play educational games, watch videos from providers such as PBS and National Geographic for Kids, as well as engage in social activities like e-mail and video mail. It also has a “Mommy mode” so parents can use it to do grown-up tasks.
Made by Los Angeles-based Fuhu, the new tablet will be called Nabi and will get content from the company’s existing Fooz Kids application, which links to 33,000 educational and kid-friendly websites and has been praised by Mommy bloggers and child safety advocates since its launch this summer. The kicker is the tablet is only going to be about $170.
Chinese/American Web 2.0 properties and app developer FUHU has teamed up with Toys R Us to offer a tablet designed specifically with young children in mind. A tablet specifically for kids with Nabi, a $199.99 Android device with a design and UI aimed squarely at the younger set. While the Nabi doesn’t wow on the hardware side — it features a 7-inch 800 x 480 capacitive touchscreen, 4GB of storage, and a 533Mhz dual-core ARM Cortex-A9, all packaged with the requisite Wi-Fi and a 1.3 megapixel front-facing camera — the differentiator here is the software. A custom UI skin provides large tappable homescreen targets, a custom browser offers “kiddified” web surfing, and a slew of children’s software is pre-loaded, including the math-focused Fooz Kids University, and over 30 art-centric apps in the “Design Studio.” 30 children’s ebooks are also included, and a special Nabi App Store will carry over 500 additional software titles aimed at children.
Nabi Quick specs
- 7-inch, 800 x 480 capacitive touchscreen
- 533 MHz, dual-core Cortex A9 processor with PowerVR SGX530 GPU
- 4 GB internal storage
- front-facing camera
- up to 5 hours battery life
- can support up to 1080p HD video playback
Its the everything tablet for kids:
Its a University: The award-winning Fooz Kids University is a Nabi exclusive with over 22,000 state standardized math skills covering grades Pre-K through 5th.
- Its a Design Studio: 30+ apps from drawing and painting to creating professional quality books allow for creative exploration that can be shared with friends and family.
- Its a Movie Theater: A 7-inch brilliant 1080p display lets children watch their favorite TV shows and movies at home or on-the-go.
- Its a Library: 30 pre-loaded e-Books make stories come to life and encourage children of all ages to read.
ay puts children in control of their favorite games such as Angry Birds, Cut the Rope, Fruit Ninja and Need for Speed.
- It’s a Game Console: Tilt-sensor controls and a Multi-Touch display puts children in control of their favorite games such as Angry Birds, Cut the Rope, Fruit Ninja and Need for Speed.
- Its Powerful Enough for Mom: With the tap of a button and password, mom can enter “Mommy Mode” and enjoy a full-featured Android tablet to browse the Web and use her favorite apps and games.
But what makes it markedly different from other tablets is kids can’t accidentally (or intentionally) land on unsavory sites or interact with people not approved by a parent. The move is part of a growing trend of companies trying to profit by keeping kids safe online, and not just through traditional parental controls or security monitoring that can screen things like sexually explicit sites.
Toys R Us is taking pre-orders now, with the device shipping on December 1st, and is even offering a free stuffed bear or reindeer with your order.