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Tablets for child??

(10 Posts)
technotstarnotechstar Sat 15-Dec-18 23:08:37

I have decided, after much agonising, to get my child a tablet for xmas. Child is 8. I am far from rich so this is a big decision and I want to be sure to spend my money wisely.

We currently own a laptop and I have a smart phone that is on its last legs and so child can't access apps on it.

So...dilemma is, do I go for an Amazon Fire 7 (£60) or a Lenovo Tablet 4.8 (£100). Wish I;d been organised enough to benefit from the Black Friday deals!

Ideally I'd like something that has access to educational apps - something to encourage doing maths, in particular. Child is also interested in languages and would like to encourage this via an app .

I really hate seeing kids glued to mindless games. I accept it will be used for that but if I can sneak some good stuff on too, it will balance out the brain rot. Any recommnedations?

We have Amazon Prime (I get it half price because I am studying) so we can access all the Amazon stuff.. I've had a look at the apps available there and they look a bit rubbish.Will it be advert filled and full of ways to make you spend money?

Is it worth paying a bit extra so we can get access to Google Play?

Can anyone advise me?

Thanks!

OP’s posts: |
HexagonalBattenburg Sun 16-Dec-18 07:40:53

Can jailbreak an amazon fire tablet to get the google play store on it very easily anyway saintlad.com/install-google-play-store-on-kindle-fire/ (I've done this multiple times with various fire tablets).

We've had a fair few Fire tablets - they've withstood a hell of a battering in terms of being dropped, covered in smears you don't want to ask the origin of, and generally being abused by 5 and 6 year olds - but the technology isn't the greatest and the camera on them is shite if you're going to be using them. I have to say the charge port on one of ours failed recently, one week before the warranty was up, and Amazon had a replacement device with us within a day. The games on them are variable - there's some decent apps in their kids offering in terms of things like the squeebles stuff and teach your monster to read but half of the time the kids just install "fluffy bunny hair and nail salon 3" regardless.

Lenovo - I have an old yogabook (fab fab design device I wish they'd done more with) - and it's bloody indestructible - it's been dropped lots and lots and generally abused - but Lenovo are shit with software updates and updates to Android versions and abandon their devices fairly quickly... so check the version of Android it's shipping with - personally I'd swerve anything Marshmallow and older (we're up to Pie at the most recent but that's only just rolling out now). My Lenovo runs perfectly OK on Nougat (Android 7) but any older and I wouldn't be buying a new device running it.

I was just looking for a cheap tablet for the kids a few weeks ago - like I say they have Fire ones but there's an app my dyspraxic daughter uses to photograph and type on worksheets that was really struggling with the camera on there and the android version was the thing I was really keeping an eye on. In the end I caved in and just bought myself an iPad instead.

Amazon reduce the Fires fairly regularly - it's possibly worth hanging on and seeing if they do again - if nothing else you can get the higher storage model then.

technotstarnotechstar Sun 16-Dec-18 12:21:06

Hexagonal - thank you. This is so useful! I am a total tech dinosaur and it's like trying to choose reading a foreign language. All that marshmallow and nougat stuff had me confused but you make it much clearer. Your advice is brilliant!

No doubt the educational apps will be completely ignored over the fluffy bunny stuff anyway smile

OP’s posts: |
HexagonalBattenburg Sun 16-Dec-18 16:13:53

Android basically goes in alphabetical order with their versions with desert names (it amuses me probably more than it should) - version 9 is Pie (won't find much stuff actually running it yet), version 8 is Oreo, version 7 is Nougat, version 6 is Marshmallow - anything before that and you're getting a really old operating system basically. Fire 7s are showing as starting from £35 for the lower memory version at the moment when I've just looked on Amazon by the way - they seem to have another pre-Xmas price drop. Ours hasn't half taken some abuse and dropping though (DD2 has dyspraxia - £40 tablets bounce off the floor so much less painfully than £400 tablets!)

NGC2017 Mon 17-Dec-18 00:27:24

My DS has been using my Samsung galaxy a tablet since he was 3. Before anyone tells me how bad that is, it's always monitored and they used them in nursery and now school and we are encouraged to download apps on to assist with their phonics, reading, maths etc.
I can only go on ours, it's an android and very easy to navigate and download apps on to. My phone is android so it helped knowing the setup and screens. My mom and dad have the lenovo but mom also has a smaller fire tablet. It really depends on what you want it to do.
All have done very well with a now 4 year old boy using them

GreenTulips Mon 17-Dec-18 00:30:20

They have accessibility feature and can only play in X game for Y time and it switches off so you can control some of the use

Let me know which you decide and I'll show you how

technotstarnotechstar Mon 17-Dec-18 23:28:27

Hexagonal - you predicted the future? The Amazon fire 16gb is reduced to £44.99. £59 if you get it without special offers. They sound pretty unspecial! Is it worth paying the extra to get rid of the ads etc?

That said, I am still struggling to make a final decision. Leaning towards the cheap and cheerful. But NGC and Greenfingers, which educational apps do you use on android?

AM I right in thinking apps on android are better? My daughter used to lay the Dumping Ground on my phone before it got temperemental - and loved it. Guessing she can't access that via Amazon?

Are there higher quality educational apps on android or is it much of a likeness? Child is 8 and I'd like to help her with her times tables. Can anyone recommend me any apps?

p.s. I agree with you Hex about the amusement and pleasure from the sweetie alphabetical naming thing.

OP’s posts: |
NGC2017 Tue 18-Dec-18 06:20:12

When my son was younger it is was abc's, numbers, Colouring, puzzles, and matching pairs. The teacher hs given us 15 to download which as fantastic all around his age and learning level. Just ask the school as they can recommend some good ones. They recently asked us to download a reading app which they tailor to your child. My DS absolutely loves it.
We don't tend to go with ad free but apps are relatively cheap on android if you want to. I only have experience with android to know what apps are available but there will for sure be many offering fun ways of learning the times table. In terms of what are better school have helped us there

technotstarnotechstar Tue 05-Feb-19 12:21:49

Just a quick update to say thanks for the advice from posters above! NGC2017, HexagonalBattenburg (great name!) and GreenTulips .

I ended up buying an Amazon Fire 7. You were right about the price dropping again!I figured if I couldn't decide, I should go for the cheapest option. My daughter was over the moon! I still hate the bloody thing and she spends far too long on the crap apps over the ones to help with times tables. However, for the joy it brings it is worth it. (it's also v good for threatening to take away for bad behaviour !)

Thanks all!

OP’s posts: |
User544788275748282947 Tue 05-Feb-19 22:44:28

The fire is really good. We paid for some kind of kid package, so it comes loaded with heaps of child friendly, age appropriate apps! There are parental controls too. There is a games area, books area, videos area and other stuff. You can set different times for different areas and the are a few different parental control options! We love the fire smile

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