Best of the Best: Kids Cell Phones
So you're considering getting your 6 to 10 year old a cell phone huh?
Don't worry, you're not as crazy as you might feel (only a little crazy), as there are millions of other parents also considering the same thing. I can count myself as one of you, as I have a 7 year old whom I have been considering getting a cell phone for. So since I was already searching for the best cell phones for younger kids, I thought I would go ahead and post what I've found.
My search criteria for a good cell phone for kids ages 6 to 10:
- Easy to use
- Has a Camera
- Big Buttons Preferable
- Limited access to internet
- Ability for me (the parent) to limit usage
- Available with an affordable prepaid service
- I like to think that using a QWERTY keyboard can help with spelling
- Durability: the less chances it can be broken on "accident", the better.
- Price is a biggie, though not necessarily in the name of sacrificing quality.
Now, not all the phones I found fit ALL of my criteria, but I'm not going to suggest anything I wouldn't purchase myself. That being said, I'm looking for something that comes with the least dangers, the most phone and the best opportunities for helping my child learn how to use a cell phone appropriately (so he can call Grandma).
FireFly Cell Phones
Described as "far from complicated", the firefly is the best when it comes to limiting what your child can access on their phones. It allows up to 20 contacts (way more than more young children need) and it comes with several options for prepaid service.
The firefly does not give an option for texting though, and is mostly for those parents that want their kids to have a "just in case" phone, or a phone they can use to call grandma from time to time. There is a nice short video review HERE if you want to check it out.
LG900G Net10 Smart Phone
With prices varying between $30 to $60 bucks, this phone definitely meets a higher quality then most phones available at the same price. That being said, it's probably not going to win any stellar awards either.
Still, because of all it's handy features, this phone is going to be best only if you get parental-control apps, or if you have an older child whom you trust to be responsible with the accessibility in this phone.
JUST 5 J509 Easy Phone
This phone isn't just great for your kids, it's also great if you have any loved crunchies (elderly) in your life. It features HUGE raised buttons with easy to see numbers and letters. This is a very good phone if you're hoping to have that extra protection for your child, as it has a special Alarm/Emergency button that not only sets off an ear splitting alarm, but also sends out calls and texts to your contacts letting them know you are having an emergency and you need them to pick up. Because of that feature (which no other phone has), it is especially good if you have a child with any special needs. This phone also gets a bonus for longevity of battery.
Now, with all that fantastic cell phone goodness in mind, this phone is "no-frills" phone. You can add 1 to 5 contacts and send text messages, though there is no camera, no music players, nothing fancy. That being said, the phone is light weight, easy to hold and to find when needed. It's made for brand new users just like your little one, and it only costs between $60 and $100.
The Jitterbug J Phone by GreatCall
This is another phone that gets as many good ratings for your elderly kin as it does for kids. It's easy to tell why, as it has raised buttons that are larger then the average phone, it's available with affordable prepaid services and there aren't a lot of "extras" that your average teen or adult would want or need.
The Samsung Restore M570
This one is create for the eco-conscious. It comes with a camera, the 1-click interface, easy to use buttons, a battery that is harder for kids to remove (and sometimes hard for adults too!), a slide out qwerty keyboard and it's generally available for less than $100.
What sucks about this phone, is that it's ultra sensitive on the d-pad, and that can make it difficult for small hands that are still getting used to using a smaller interface. That being said, this phone is a good option as far as affordability, accesability and eco-friendliness.
Huawei Ascend Android Phone by Cricket
The Huawei is Crikets "cheap & easy" phone, which is part of what makes it a great first phone for your youngster. It comes equipped with a camera, touch screen and prepaid service. Most reviewers and users have given it the green light as far as affordable phones for beginners.
Also, being that the Ascend is an android phone, you can get service from just about any carrier and download most safety apps including GPS locators.