Finding the best phones for kids is something many parents struggle with.
Your kids might want the latest and greatest mobile phone but many parents wonder if it is age-appropriate? Is it in the budget?
Thankfully, there are phones for young kids, phones for pre-teens, and phones for teens all within a reasonable family budget.
Here are the best suggestions on what phone might be best for your children.
What is the “right” age for kids to have a phone?
There is no “right” age to get your child a phone. It really is dependent on your child and their situation.
Some parents start their kids early with hand-me-down phones to use as entertainment devices (no data, no plan, and with parental controls enabled). Other families wait until the child has reached a “milestone” (examples: walking home from school independently, a specific birthday, changing schools).
Some might even introduce their kids to a phone when there is a change in a family situation like separation and divorce. A dedicated phone for a child can be helpful in keeping in contact between parent/child when they are with the other parent.
Mobile Phone Usage Discussion Topics to Have as a Family
Prior to giving your child a phone you might want to have a discussion about what a phone entails. These are some great talking points to think about and discuss with your kids.
- The responsibility of having a phone (not losing it, breaking it, loaning it to someone else)
- The expense of the phone and plan (should they chip in their allowance money?)
- The rules on usage (text parent when you are home, don’t give out your number to strangers, it doesn’t go to bed with child)
- What will be the consequences if it is broken or they go over the data plan?
The Best Phones for Kids
Ready to find the best phones for kids. Here is a great list to get you started finding the best phone for your kids.
Mobile Phones for Young Kids
The Jethro 3G phone is a solid no-frills first phone for young kids. It has an SOS Button Call function where you can program up to 6 Emergency contacts.
It’s very easy to use for kids. If you want a “phone” only type of mobile phone where there will be no lure of games, music, or the Internet this is the basic phone for your needs.
The Relay Kids Phone Alternative is a simple walkie-talkie type of device. It is very kid-friendly and also special needs friendly.
Kids only need to press and hold the middle button to talk. There is a voice assistant to choose contacts and you have up to 10 Relays on one account.
It also has an app functionality where you can use the Relay as a GPS tracker which might be the peace of mind you are looking for if your child is walking alone. There are also accessories available to make this a wearable phone alternative (attach to pants, wear around the neck, strap to arm). And the price point is reasonable.
If you are looking for a basic phone with a long battery life, look no further than the Nokia 3310 3G. It comes in a variety of vibrant colors (Azure, Yellow, Warm Red, and Charcoal).
This Nokia phone also has Bluetooth capabilities so it can connect to portable speakers. There is also a headphone jack and Bluetooth FM radio so kids can listen to music during their downtime.
Mobile Phones for pre-teens
The CircuitMess Ringo 4G Kit would be a great gift for pre-teens who love STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) learning!
STEM-loving teens would love it too. This kit has everything you need to build your own functioning mobile phone. It’s a great learning experience for investigating what goes into building a cell phone.
This DIY phone has capabilities for phone, text, games, music, videos, and more. Lego builders and puzzle solvers will love this phone.
The LG K30 is a budget-friendly student phone option. It runs on android which allows your student to access the Google Play store. It has a dual camera for pictures. And a 5.45” HD display. Plus, there are fun functions like a photo booth and a portrait mode which will take photos and selfies to the next level of kid fun.
The Jitterbug Smart2 is a basic phone with a touch-screen interface! The Jitterbug Smart2 has a 5.5” screen with a simple organized menu. The menu also provides icons for go-to functions like phone, maps, email, text, photos and more.
This is a great phone choice for visual kids. Keep things trouble-free by using speech-to-text to send messages. Also, this phone has a 13.0 Megapixel built-in camera with flash.
Best mobile phones for teens
The Samsung Galaxy A30S is a great phone for kids who love to take pictures. It has a Triple Rear Camera with LED Flash, Panorama, HDR & 16MP Front Facing Camera. That’s FOUR cameras in one mobile phone, making this phone one of the best phones for kids.
Video-calls and photos cannot get better than this. It’s sleek and stylish with a boost of fast charging battery life. This is a powerful yet functional phone!
The LG V35 ThinQ V35 is a great choice for students because it has 6 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage with the option to add a microSD expandable memory. It has the usual teen requirements kids want in a phone, camera, apps, games, and more. Plus, it’s light-weight and pocket friendly!
For a teen who loves to take photos the Google Pixel 3a camera is hard to beat.
The camera has functions like: night sight, portrait mode, and HDR+. Also, Google apps are all built-in!
This camera has an impressive battery life of 7 hours of use with just a 15-minute charge. Definitely a great choice when looking into phones for kids.
If you are looking for a compact design, but with all the functionality your student needs, it can be found in the Motorola Moto E6 Plus. The ultra-wide screen allows for a substantial field of vision for reading emails, web browsing, and entertainment like watching their favorite YouTube star. It has a crazy-long battery life of up to 24 hours too.
If your teen is dying for an iPhone, then the iPhone 7 is the perfect starter phone for them. It offers the performance and battery life of iPhones at a reduced price compared to the top tier iPhone products available. It is Water-resistant and dust resistant. Great size for fitting in pockets, purses, and backpacks.
Other things to consider when buying a phone for your child:
- What phone alternatives might be appropriate (GPS tracker, phone features on a tablet)
- Upcycle an old phone (ask family & friends if they have an old phone collecting dust)
- Budget (feasibility and affordability are important)
- Battery life (longer life is always better)
- Durability (will it stand up to bumps, drops, and spills)
- Phone plans (can you add them to a family plan and save money?)
- What’s best for you? (Pre-paid plans, monthly plans, pay-as-you-go)
- Do you want to purchase a data plan or just have a call and text plan?
What do you think are the best phones for kids? What was the first phone you got your child? Share in the comments.
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