Though smartwatches are becoming increasingly more common, there remains some doubt about whether they really are the next big thing in portable mobile technology or just the 21st century equivalent of the HD DVD.
Well, the numbers speak for themselves— Apple shipped 6.8 million smartwatches worldwide in Q3 2019, a whopping 51 percent increase from 4.5 million in Q3 2018 — smartwatches have indubitably broken into the mainstream.
But the smartwatch is, at its heart, for the inherently notification obsessed, taking them straight from a vibrating phone to an at-a-glance location literally on your body: your wrist. If you don’t need to look at your phone the very moment it lights up with a notification, then a smartwatch probably isn’t for you.
But there are few more notification obsessed than kids. That’s why we’ve put together a list of the nine best smartwatches for kids on the market! Alongside the benefits of owning a smartwatch, I’ve also discussed some of the risks associated with them, so you know exactly what you’re getting yourself into.
Samsung’s been in the smartwatches game since 2013 and it shows – The Galaxy Watch Active 2 is its slickest smartwatch yet, in both 40mm and 44mm sizes. The large, HD OLED screen is a breeze to read outdoors, and there’s no shortage of excellent digital and analogue watch faces, plus plenty of third part offerings if you’re so inclined! Even so, it manages to be easy to navigate and user friendly enough to earn it a spot on our list of the best smartwatches for kids. Though battery life can be inconsistent, there are playback and/or volume control issues with some headphones and Samsung’s voice assistant, Bixby, is a nightmare, this is still one of the best smartwatches for a ten year old out there.
We love that this one looks apple-watch esque — it’s sleek, discreet and waterproof — but its ability to send and make phonecalls directly is what earned it its place on our list of the best smartwatches for kids.
At 10, your child may not need a phone, but they do need to be able to stay in touch with you. The watch’s contact list is controlled by an app on the adult’s phone that two parents can potentially access, so keeping a watchful eye on whomever your child is in contact with is easy. Whilst you can add contacts as you please, your child won’t be able to without having to run them past you first. The call quality’s superb: the watch has an excellent microphone and speaker. You’ll note that there isn’t a headphone jack, so there’ll be no private calls.
The watch’s encrypted GPS tracker will keep you abreast of your child’s location. If they need to, they can hold the button on the watch down for a few seconds and you’ll get an SOS alert. You can even set safety zones — a radius of 500m around school or band practice that can’t be left without the watch sending you an alert. Its stellar battery life, surprisingly good camera and excellent parental controls are what make it one of the best phone watches for kids out there.
Verizon’s GizmoWatch 2 does a lot well — with GPS, fitness tracking and task scheduling, this is the grown-up smartwatch experience your child will love with all the parental-control features you’re looking for. It’s a tall order, but the GizmoWatch 2 nails it: it’s indubitably one of the best smartwatches for 10 year olds on the market.
At $100, it delivers on its promise of a lot for a little: fun, lively texting that’s a far cry from the stilted, scripted style of most other watches, a parent controlled contact list and stunning, square interface make this one of the best smartwatches for kids you’re likely to find.
Will automatically update to an adult account when your child turns 13
Fun fitness challenges
Great for budding athletes
Good choice for children with smartphones
No games or anything of that sort
Three axis accelerometer
Children may begin to find it boring after a while
Often criticized for prompting children to being thinking about their bodies too early
For budding athletes — the FitBit Ace 2 is a more fun, pared down version of the adult FitBit Alba, and a great choice for kids who already have a smartphone! The FitBit has undergone many evolutions to become what is undoubtedly the best interface for tracking core aspects of health, both activity-wise and diet-wise, making the FitBit Ace 2 one of the best smarwatches for kids on the market! Its three-axis accelerometer and vibration motor keep track of advanced metrics like distance and calories burned. The best part? At age 13, children automatically get moved to an adult account for more comprehensive metrics like body fat and menstrual tracking, all while getting to keep their progress!
The watch’s fun animated clock faces that turn into celebrations when a goal is reached (like a rocket ship taking off as they inch toward their step goal) and fitness challenges make it super kid-friendly, and earned it its place on our list of the best smartwatches for kids!
Children will love how stylish and trim this smartwatch is, but it’s also a really solid piece of tech! So long as you’ve got access to a 2G network and you buy the recommended SIM, your child can make 2 way phone calls to a maximum of 5 contacts, though there’s no option to block incoming calls from unknown numbers. There’s no texting, but there are voice messages and thanks to the surprisingly good microphone and speaker, you’ll hear actual words instead of the garbled stream of jumbled nonsense you’d otherwise be expecting at this price point. Revolutionary, right? We thought so too, which is why the MeritSoar is on our list of the best smartwatches for kids out there. Children will love the games, and camera, you’ll love the SOS functions and GPS+LBS trackers and contact control! Definitely one of the best phone watches for kids out there.
Charming detachable straps make sure it stays exciting
Your kids will love the straps!
Makes chores fun!
Lots of different straps so your children won't become bored of it
The Garmin Vivofit makes exercise engaging and offers parents a fun way to incentivize chores! Unlike the FitBit, the Garmin places a premium on fun, rather than fitness and the point is to get kids moving and breaking a sweat, not losing weight. It displays the time, the date, a step counter, an active minutes counter, and counters for chores, reward coins, and rewards, making it one of the best phone watches for kids on Amazon!
The cleverest thing about the Vivofit’s design are its cute, detachable straps! The console in the middle comes right out, so that you can change the strap with 0 fuss, and there are several different designs available based around your children’s favourite Disney characters. Each strap comes with its own distinct storylines on the associated Vívofit Jr app, which plays out in the form of a little boardgame inside the app’s “Adventure” mode. Is it any wonder that it’s on our list of the best smartwatches for 10 year olds?
There’s a lot to like about the Amazfit Bip Smartwatch! It has an always-on display, weeks-long battery life, plus extras like heart rate, GPS and water resistance. For children with smartphones, it features a Bluetooth connection, so they can stay on top of all their notifications. At $65, there’s not a lot to fault with the Bip. That alone would enough to net it a place on our list of the best smartwatches for 10 year olds, but that’s not all the Bip does.
Its transflective color display is a lot like one of those old-school Gameboys: the more direct light is on it, the better. Out and about, in the bright sun, it’s lovely. In dimmer light, it’s a little tougher on the eyes, but there is a backlight that kicks in when you raise the watch up or press the side button. Small but mighty, this is one of the best phone watches for kids.
Amongst the first companies to launch a smartwatch made for children, Vtech knows what they’re doing. The DX2 features a slick waterproof design and a camera on board for shooting stills, though it was primarily designed with your child’s safety in mind. Voice calling, real-time location tracking and the ability for parents to set up safety zones — I bet you didn’t think your child’s first phone could help secure your peace of mind.
But is the DX2 really one of the best smartwatches for kids out there? Its GPS tracking, like that of most smartwatches, to be fair, is objectively terrible. The microphone could use some improvement as well — calls crackled and buzzed and got to be unpleasant after a few minutes. However, when it comes right down to core functionality, the DX2 is pretty solid. It does what you want it to: helps you stay in contact with your kid and allows them a measure of independence by letting them make their own calls (to contacts you’ve selected, of course). It really is one of the best phone watches for kids out there.
This watch’s fresh, inventive design was isn’t what landed it its place on our list of the best smartwatches for ten year olds: that was its unparalleled functionality and the fact that owing to its end to end encryption, none of its data can be compromised!
With 3G connectivity, provided through Tata’s built-in SIM card, tracking the wearer’s location through GPS, Wi-Fi hotspots and cellular networks this is one piece of tech that’s married both form and the ultimate in kid-friendly functionality! Children will love the camera, customizable block straps and all the fun faces. You’ll dig the safety features. At $179, it may be a little steep, but it’s still indubitably one of the best smartwatches for 10 year olds on the market!
Wondering where to start when it comes to buying the best smartwatch for your child? Look no further! I’ve compiled a list of the best smartwatches for 10 year olds on the market to aid you on your search.
Smartwatches: a security threat?
Do Smart Watches Do More Harm Than Good?
In 2017, Germany became the first country in the world to ban children’s smartwatches because their security flaws made them vulnerable to being used as spying devices. The primary concern with the devices is that they could be turned into remote microphones – it’s not the GPS tracking capability that is the main issue.
And fitness trackers for children are often criticised on the grounds that children start calorie counting at a young age. And of course, the accusations that parents make use of smartwatches to keep tabs on their children 24/7.
Why Smart Watches?
Smartwatches have existed in various iterations for more than the last decade. But what are they for? As sales of smartphones dropped dramatically in the early 2010s, owing to the simple fact that pretty much everyone who wanted one already owned one, hardware companies began frantically searching for other gadgets to peddle at tech exhibitions, and unveilings, and big box stores. And lo and behold — the advent of the smartwatch. If they caught on, and we were hooked, they’d be rolling in money again soon enough.
And their appeal continues to exist, given the amount of child-geared watches on the market. And most manufacturers have taken the criticism to heart, and built in measures to assure parents that the watches aren’t putting their children at risk. The smartwatches we’ve selected are carefully designed with both the child and their parents in mind!
When it comes to smart watches, your kids want what you have. In the event that what you have is suitably cool enough, you can all but guarantee it’ll be no time at all before they’re taking yours or asking for their own.
When a $400 apple watch isn’t an option, smart-watches geared towards kids, with their user-friendly design, games and interactive interfaces will do in a pinch.
Hey, I’ve been experimenting with tech, pets & fashion products for more than 10 years now and I must say. It’s a pretty wild ride. Through my experiments, I have managed to become an expert in the art of reviewing different products and rating them & now, I want to share with the world what I have learnt. Possibly saving you a lot of time too!