Pick the best electronic gifts
This time of year, we are busy trying to come up with ideas for gifts for our own kids, nieces and nephews, and even friends’ kids.
Unfortunately, after a certain age, getting a new sweatshirt isn’t exciting. Instead, kids want something electronic.
Like last year, Disney Infinity — an action-adventure video game — has come out with a new version this year — 3.0. As with Infinity 2.0, the figures and power discs are only forward compatible. You can use the Infinity 2.0 base to play with 3.0 characters if you have the Infinity 3.0 game disc or with the downloaded game. The downloaded game costs about $20 and allows you to play only with the new figures.
Tablets are very popular for children of all ages. Many families have replaced their in-car DVD players with tablets because tablets can be used outside of the car. The most popular tablets are iPads and Google Android-based models. The nice part about these is that they can be used by all ages.
No matter what tablet you purchase, invest in a good case. Since many kids bring them to school, they need the protection from bookbags, lockers and friends. I am a huge fan of Otterbox. I always put on one my cell phone because I’m notorious for dropping my phone in a parking lot during a rainstorm.
If you’re looking for a tablet that’s “kid proof,” you should check out Nabi, which offers various age-appropriate models. The tablets are based on an Android tablet but then have child-proof, parent-approved features added to them. They also come with a “bumper” which is like a case.
I can attest to their durability: Someone I work with has a bunch of children who have broken regular tablets, but the Nabi tablet has survived. Nabi is also the company that makes the Big Tab — in 20- or 24-inch size — that is meant to be used by the entire family to play games. Although this tablet may be too big to travel, it could be a replacement for the board games we played as kids.
There are so many options available for technology gifts for children. The main things you should think about are how much you want to spend, connectivity and parental controls. Happy holidays!
Talk to Stephanie
Stephanie Kreitman is an IT manager, mom to two boys, and a member of Upstate Women in Technology. Follow her @StephKreitman.