Mobile phone for 11 yo DS

(12 Posts)
ohforfoxsake Tue 11-Jun-13 11:31:58

DS is starting secondary school in Sept and I'm thinking of getting him a phone before he leaves his junior school as his friends are off to different schools.

Does anyone have any recommendations? Anything to avoid or be aware of?

This article in the weekend Guardian set me off on it - I'm tempted to get the cheap smartphone.

www.guardian.co.uk/money/2013/jun/06/mobile-phones-children-buyers-guide#start-of-comments

Madmog Tue 11-Jun-13 14:11:51

My daughter is in Year 7 and we had to work this one out last year. In the end she just had my husbands old phone, and still has £2 of the £10 credit we put on it. All areas are different, but those that do have them on a contract tend to be with Tescos - you can get a Samsung or HTC phone for £7.50 per month and it's capped, so if they use up texts, they can't go over.

She has an ipod and her closest friends have an ipad, so tent to keep in touch a lot that way

Sunnymeg Tue 11-Jun-13 17:02:31

I would check the mobile coverage in your area before you make your choice. We live in a rural area and T-Mobile is the only provider that covers our home and school 12 miles away with anything like a reasonable signal.

I have also taken out a subscription with Alphablue. This means I can block DS phone at certain times of day. He can still ring emergency numbers, including us, but he can't mess around with it, when he should be doing other stuff.

ohforfoxsake Tue 11-Jun-13 17:33:07

Thanks Madmog. That's really helpful - I'll have a look at Tesco. smile

ohforfoxsake Tue 11-Jun-13 18:03:09

That's really helpful Sunnymeg, thank you. I have never heard of that. smile

BodrumBodrum Wed 12-Jun-13 12:10:25

Thank you Sunnymeg. I also didn't know about Alphablue too. I will look into it as we are planning to buy a mobile for our 11 years old son too..

Pickle131 Mon 17-Jun-13 04:20:03

Things to be aware of - my husband works for a large mobile phone company and won't let our 12 yr old have a phone yet. His reason is the government independent report that recommended they not be used by under 16s because their skulls haven't developed to adult thickness and the effects of the radiation are unknown. That's why you don't see phones designed for kids- they're not allowed to market to them. I only say this because it's a good idea to limit call time. Texting is fine. My DS also wouldn't be capable of looking after a phone so that's the other reason!

jennifersofia Sat 22-Jun-13 00:45:53

We started out with an old smart phone that was dh's, but found that she was basically using it as another computer, and accessing internet/ games on phone for far too much of her life - was affecting her relationship with us and other family members. Happily she lost that one, so I got her a very basic cheapie that has extremely limited games and no internet access. She was upset about it for about 1 day and then got over it. I don't think there has been any teasing re: having a basic phone.
I think it does depend a lot on the child, but I would always recommend starting with a basic phone and then go from there. Also not so traumatic when it gets dropped/lost/stolen. A monthly cap on spending is also good.
Top tip, don't allow it in the bedroom at night from the outset. It quickly becomes norm and avoids problems.

CatsAndTheirPizza Wed 26-Jun-13 21:18:57

Blimey Pickle . Does your DH say if there is a particular manufacturer that makes a safer phone (presumably they are all much the same)?

exexpat Wed 26-Jun-13 21:21:44

Really, Pickle? But in any case, teens/preteens hardly ever make calls on their phones, it's all texts and games. DS is 14, has had a contract phone for nearly 3 years, and has never used up his monthly talk minutes allowance.

exexpat Wed 26-Jun-13 21:26:31

I presume this is the report you are talking about - 'Still no evidence of harm to health' - which says that children should avoid 'excessive' use of mobiles, just in case, although there is no evidence that it causes any problems. I think DS talks on his phone for about 30-60 minutes over the course of a month, so that's probably not excessive.

Kaza80 Wed 26-Jun-13 21:59:11

I gave my daughter got a mobile phone when she started middle school in year 5 just so she could ring me on the way home so I no she was ok (live a minute from the school lol) she didn't really use it much at the time but now she's in year 6 she lives on it texting mates, Facebook etc, I went with the three network cause they give you 2000 free three to three phone calls every month

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