There used to be a reasonably heated debate amongst parents and teachers about whether teenagers and children needed to have mobile phones. At Tele2, we have always seen technology as a great enabler, a way to stay in contact, stay safe and improve your communications.
It’s all well and good to say that children don’t need phones, but the practical aspects of the argument far outweigh this. For example, having access to a simple phone means that kids who are held up by a delayed bus can contact mum or dad so they don’t stress unnecessarily. Similarly, if a wild storm hits, as is common in Queensland and the Sunshine Coast this time of year, parents and carers can text their child letting them know they will be late and let them know to go somewhere safe until it passes, rather than waiting at the bus stop or the local shops.
But having a phone brings all sorts of considerations with it, including safety online and affordability, so what is available on the market?
Firefly’s phone is a simple, cheap, bubble-like creation designed especially for young children. Named the Firefly glowPhone, any child over 12 would likely shun the toy-like device, but with four simple buttons and a luminescent screen is a great, simple option. One button calls mum, another calls dad, and one hangs up the call.
It also has a function where parents can monitor calls and comes pre-loaded with some child friendly games. Other important specifications are the 210 hours of battery life, built in torch and the ability to receive texts, but not send them. It is also a very budget conscious phone, retailing for around $50.
Not a phone on it’s own, Kytephone is an app for Android mobile devices like the Google Nexus, HTC or LG Smartphones. It essentially puts a gate on the phone, which can be customised by the parent.
This means that parents can choose who can be texted or called from the phone, which apps are accessible from the phone and even how long those apps are used for (no more playing Angry Birds for 2 hours straight!).
It’s a great option if the household has a “hand me down” phone that is no longer being used that can be pressed back into service as a kids phone.
Another phone in the mould of the Firefly, the LG Migo is a bright green 6-button phone with no screen to speak of and cute “ears” that will appear to small children since we think that it makes the phone resemble the popular Dreamworks character, Shrek!
It holds four parent programmed numbers but cannot receive or send text messages. Because of the fact it’s screen is the same length and width of a double-A battery, the standby battery is a huge 200 plus hours and has three hours of talk time.
The Samsung phone for kids is unsurprisingly one of the phones that is more suited to older kids and young teenagers, in keeping with Samsung’s more stylish designs. It is a flip phone, which does all the basics including receiving and sending text messages, making calls.
It also is the first of the phones on this list to include a camera and a speech to text feature which allows speech to be converted to words in a message.
Nokia Lumia 710
This is the most advanced and “grown up” looking of the phones on this list, and as such is a good phone for older children and teenagers. It is particularly suited for older users, as it has automatic sync features with Microsoft Office. This means, for example, a year 11 English speech can be read easily on the bus after being saved on a PC or tablet, so that the student can learn the content from their phone before their final presentation.
While this is not a comprehensive list of all of the phones that are suitable for children and young teenagers, it is a great starting point for your research.
If we can help with choosing a phone for your kids this Christmas or any of your other communications needs, please get in contact by clicking here, our friendly and knowledgeable team is at your service.