How Smart Phone Android Apps Work for Children and Kids
Kids apps are a hot market
With over 100 million smart phone Android users in the U.S. alone, the market for Android apps is hot. So hot that even companies like Disney have jumped into developing games for children's and kids apps, fun learning games for kids which can be played on their parents phones (or in my case Grandma's phone)
The apps - which are games, drawing and learning programs for ages 2 and up, can be delivered to your phone with a simple push of the buttons on most of the Android "smart phones". I recently discovered and downloaded some of these apps for my 3 year grandson, and now we "share" my phone when Grandma is not busy using it.
How many smart phone (Android) users are there in the U.S.?
According to comScore (a research firm), there were 101.3 million smartphone subscribers in U.S. at the end of January 2012.
Google Android : 48.6%
Apple's iOS: 29.5%
Microsoft : 4.4%
Downloading apps for kids on smart phones
Although smart phones have been around for the last couple years, I just got my first Android phone last week for my birthday. I had previously used a BlackBerry Curve but found my web browsing capabilities were sadly lacking. Now I was really looking forward to a bigger screen with the ability to gather information from the web faster and hopefully easier.
I was not disappointed with my new Samsung Prevail phone with Boost service (I have been a Boost customer for over 2 years now) Besides easier navigation (once you get past that dreaded learning curve), I was intrigued by the idea of being able to download some apps for my grandson.
I got the idea for downloading some kids apps after watching my other 2 year grand-daughter playing with her apps on her dads Android smart phone. She was having so much fun playing games on the phone and learning so much that I decided some kids apps were definitely in order for my new smart phone too.
I realized just how technology savvy our younger generation is getting when the 2 year old asked her dad, "Is my app finished downloading?". I think we may be on our way to creating some little geniuses with all these new technologies available!
Do you trust your child with a smart phone?
Although the idea of handing over a $200 - $400 phone to a toddler would have once seemed ridiculous, recent surveys have found that parents are becoming more willing to trust and share phones with their toddlers and kids.
In July of this year, Disney commissioned a survey of 2,000 British parents who owned an app-capable device and found that 75% share them with their children; 56% said they had downloaded an app at the request of their kids; and 37% considered apps to be an "integral" part of their family life.
As I told my grandson though, "The phone belongs to grandma so when it rings you have to let me use my phone." At first this didn't go over well with him because he insisted that because the app was for kids, he should have first dibs when using it. Once I explained that we would "share" the phone, he finally understands. Now I don't have a screaming kid when I have to interrupt his game.
Interesting times indeed!
Recommended Smart Phone Apps for kids and children (kid tested and Grandma approved)
Finding apps for your kids and children on smart phones is very easy - and there a lot of free ones that can be downloaded. I use the Google Play app on my Android to search for apps on my phone.
My 2 year old grand-daughters favorite app on her dads phone is Stack ‘N Puzzles for Kids made by 77SPARX Studio, Inc. I often see her playing these apps between rides in the car, downtime with mom or dad and even at church (a good way to keep a 2 year old busy while sitting through a long service, just turn the volume down!)
She also likes a drawing app called Kids Paint Free made by Virtual GS.
So far, my grandsons favorite app is the Kids Preschool Puzzle Lite by IntelliJoy. We tried the free version first which had limited puzzles. In the beginning he was timid to play the puzzle game and wanted me to slide the puzzle pieces, but after about 5 minutes he got the idea of navigating and he was off and running.
Once I saw that he was having a blast with the puzzles, I paid a one-time charge of $1.49 by credit card for the full version which includes all the letters of the alphabet, numbers, professions, shapes, colors, vegetables, fruit, animals and fun puzzles like birthdays cakes, ships and boats. It was quite worth my $1.49!
The wonderful thing about learning apps for children is not just the fact that it keeps them busy, but more importantly they are learning things and developing their fine motor skills at the same time. My grandson has been learning about professions in his puzzle app and he now knows that a detective "helps find lost dogs and people". Pretty impressive for a 3 year old!