4 things to look for before buying a phone for your Kid

LG Migo Verizon VX1000 Mobile Child Phone with battery and wall charger
An example of Kid-friendly CellPhone: 
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My father had his first cellphone when he was 55, I got mine when I was 20, my nephew has his first cellphone when he was 10 years old.

What does this prove?

That through years cellphones have become extremely popular; and the "age for the first phone" is going down, quickly. In no time, one can even see pendant phones hanging around six months olds’ necks.

But no matter how popular cellphones may become, buying yor kid a cellphone is still a very tough decision for most parents. The enormity of the decision becomes more sizeable; when one considers the facts that today’s kids usually bug their parents to get the newest models available on the market.

As a parent not buying a cellphone for your kid may be difficult for you, for practical reasons too, but with some simple awareness, you can buy your kid a phone and still remain stress free.

Here are 6 things you should look for before buying a new cellphone for your child:

1) Ask for a phone made especially for kids. A lot of cell phone manufacturers are now offering products that are specially designed for the use of your children. Most service providers offer plans that they offer for kids.

2) Look for the parental control features that parents can choose from in the new cellphone. Parental controls are features that allow you to restrict the features available on the phone. Some features that could be restricted from the phone are internet access and text messaging.

If not sure how to know what the phone provides, ask the store’s sales personnel to show you the options. If you are not very tech savvy, feel free to ask him/her give you a demo. And make sure you got the demo clearly.

3) If possible purchase a phone that allows you to restrict access of other people from your kid’s phone and would allow you to choose people who could call them. If the phone doesn’t have the said option, as it can’t have all the features, then ask for the operating system the phone uses (a popular and expensive phones are equivalent to computers, so they use operating systems too. Some mobile operating systems are: Symbian in Nokia, iOS in iPhone, Android in droid etc. ) and based on that chose some Parental control application. An example of some Parental control apps for android phones is here.

4) Choose among phones that have children locators and GPS trackers so that you will know where your kids are all the time. This feature uses satellite uplinks to give you detailed information on the exact location of you children.

It’ll look retrograde to some parents, but not buying your kids, those phones with internet access and video capabilities will be a good idea; as currently, Parental controls on mobile doesn’t allow filtering on web surfing. Parental controls on cellphones has just started evolving so, the controls have not reached to the PC level.

Conclusion: Purchasing mobile phones for your kids is a very tough decision to make. Parents should consider the risks involved and educate their children regarding its proper use before purchasing a mobile phone for their kids. Although some kids are hard to make them act responsibly; still educating a kid from time to time and remaining vigilant is the best policy rather than spying.

Although, right now, the trend of highly enabled phones called smartphones is increasing, but as more and more kids will lay their hands on these phones, manufacturers and regulators will have to come up with a specific policy for cellphones designed especially for kids. The devices that will take into account their age. --------

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