Kids get their own tablets, with parents in control

Jan 08, 2014
Children play with digital tablets on October 19, 2013, during the "Kidexpo" show at the Porte de Versailes exhibition centre in Paris

Kid-safe tablets and smartphones are hitting the market, giving parents more control over how the mobile devices are used.

Hollywood studio DreamWorks has joined the move, introducing its DreamTab at this week's Consumer Electronics Show in partnership with California-based manufacturer Fuhu.

The new device will be up against competition—including from French-based Kurio, which has its own tablets on display at the huge Las Vegas show, and is also introducing a kid-safe .

Fuhu already makes a tablet designed for kids called Nabi, but will expand its footprint with DreamWorks, teaming up with the animators behind films like Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and How to Train Your Dragon.

The tablet will include programs to teach kids how to draw their favorite characters.

It will comply with the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), a US law that limits how much data can be collected from young children.

DreamTab will be sold later this year in eight- and 12-inch versions, running the Android operating system with Fuhu's modifications.

Tablet owners will have a kid-friendly App Zone that allows parents and children to buy apps, games, music, movies, videos, e-books and other goods.

"Fuhu grabbed our attention when they came on the market because they single-handedly made a quantum leap forward in revolutionizing the kids tech space," said DreamWorks Animation's Jim Mainard.

"The DreamTab posed a compelling challenge not only to our filmmakers and artists to create content for this new medium, but also for our engineers and innovators who worked hand-in-hand with the Fuhu team to develop the consumer-facing side of this groundbreaking technology."

Like the DreamTab, Kurio's seven- and 10-inch tablets allow for parental filtering, and parents can set preset limits for the device or various applications.

"You can choose any of the apps and restrict them," said Kurio spokesman Eric Levin. "So you can decide your child can't use Facebook after 9 pm."

Kurio is also launching a smartphone based on the same technology, which will include "geo-fencing" to allow parents to know when the child leaves a designated area.

"You have younger and younger kids getting smartphones, and this allows parents to have some control," Levin said.

The phone is being sold unlocked in the US market, for $100.

The Consumer Electronics Association, which runs CES, said this week that smartphones are expected to maintain their position as the sales leader of the industry in 2014, with US unit shipments projected to reach 152 million this year while sales of tablets are due to hit 89.3 million units.

Explore further: Global tech spending seen slipping one pct in 2014

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Global tech spending seen slipping one pct in 2014

Jan 06, 2014

The Consumer Electronics Association estimates that global spending on technology will slip 1 percent in 2014 to $1.06 trillion as the lower average selling price of smartphones and tablets offsets unit growth in markets ...

Toddlers getting more tablet use, study finds

Oct 28, 2013

The craze for tablets and smartphones is spreading to ever younger users. A new study of American households found 38 percent of toddlers and infants under the age of two have used a mobile device such as ...

Tablet computer sales losing steam

Dec 03, 2013

Tablet computers have been one of the hottest items in tech in recent years, but sizzling growth is likely to slow in the coming years, a market tracker said Tuesday.

'Internet of Things' to take CES center stage

Jan 04, 2014

From drones and smart cars to remote-controlled door locks and eyewear, the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show promises to showcase the "Internet of Things," along with gadgets like smartphones and tablets.

Recommended for you

Tech review: Another year, another iPad

18 hours ago

Some years, Apple introduces a new version of a product and the world rejoices. Other years, the updates are more under the hood, but they still sell a ton.

Gift Guide: Lots of tablet choices, oh my!

Nov 25, 2014

Time for a tablet? People tend to hold onto tablets longer than smartphones, so take time to weigh your options. A major consideration is what phone you or your gift recipient already has. Although it's possible ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.