Today kids want to do what the adults are doing, and sometimes they are even one step ahead. This is the case with Vtech’s Kidizoom Smart Watch which is available now (ahead of Apple’s new iWatch). It features are both analogue and digital watch displays, voice recorder and distortion, photo and video recording and effects, stopwatch and timer, games and an alarm. It includes 128 MB internal memory – storing around 900 photos or 15 minutes of video. Aimed at children ages 5-12 years it is simple enough to use (with its touch screen, camera and home buttons) for the younger audience, but technical enough (with its capabilities) for the older range. We were invited to Go Ape at Black Park for the boys to take the Kidizoom challenge to show off just how smart these watches are.
- Pull a cheeky monkey face with Bob the Ape
- Capture your journey through the Tibetan Bridge.
- Howl like Tarzan as you zoom on the zip wire.
- Cross the noughts and crosses backwards.
- Cross the flying carpet with no hands.
- Hop across the button bridge.
- Chatter like a monkey on the zip wire.
- Take a selfie on the balancing beam.
- Capture the treetop view on the chess crossing.
- Smile for the camera you have completed the smart watch challenge.
One of the problems we did run into was the fact that the boys loved recording, snapping and editing so much that they did run out of room. This means they deleted a lot of the challenge (without thinking) as they were just so keen to record/create new things. For me this is a good sign that it would make a good Christmas present as it definitely has lasting playability. This was the same for all three of my boys (ages 5, 7 and 11) so do believe the Smart Watch fits its target audience well.
When home it was straight forward to plug-in to the laptop to charge and move files. There is also an option to add files (but only ones taken with the Smart Watch) this means you can save favourite photos or add ones of themselves taken by their friends/family on their watches. It was really interesting to see and hear things from a child’s point of view. The recorder on the watch is rather discreet so people many not even release that any recording is going on. Or the child may have pressed record and forgot themselves.
As a parent I also liked how educational it was as children don’t seem to wear watches these days as they can tell the time on their phones! So it was good to hear the younger ones learning the analogue and digital times, as well as watching them having fun setting alarms and programming the stop watch. We did talk about NOT setting an alarm to go off at 1am!!!
I was impressed with the quality of the pictures (well the ones my boys had managed to shoot right) and they already started learning photo techniques (such as it’s impossible to take a good picture without the right light). There was a good variety of editing options for both their photos and videos. The games I have only watched them play but did see that they utilised the photos they had taken. Again they seemed straight forward enough for even my 5 year old to access and use (plus he has special needs).
Not only would I really recommend Vtech’s Kidizoom Smart Watch but it has made me really consider getting myself an iWatch when they are out – or at least looking into whether they are as good!
Available from all good toy stores RRP £39.99. I spot that Boots currently are selling them for £29.99 or 2,999 points.
The boys were each gifted with a Kidizoom Smart Watch and a Go Ape experience in order to test out all it’s capabilities. Transport and food were also provided. All words and opinions are my own.