Home 9 Apps & Devices 9 Best Smartwatches For Kids in 2024

Best Smartwatches For Kids in 2024

by | Dec 12, 2023

Is your child ready for a phone? If not, a smartwatch could be a good alternative. Smartwatches for kids are a safe and helpful way for families to dip their toes into the digital world. They allow you to stay connected with your child and ensure their safety even when you’re not together. With GPS features, you can track your child’s location and make sure they arrived home safely after school. Texting functions enable kids to message their parents and ask for permission for spontaneous playdates. When choosing a smartwatch for your child, consider their age, maturity level, your budget, and the parental controls and features that will be most beneficial for your family. It’s important to have a conversation about internet safety and set expectations around technology use when introducing any smart device. Based on our testing and insights, we have listed some of the best smartwatches for kids.

What to Consider When Choosing a Smartwatch for Kids

When looking for a smartwatch for kids, it’s important to find one that matches their age and meets both the parent’s and child’s needs. Some smartwatches have advanced features, while others are more basic and suitable for younger children. Dr. Pearlman suggests that parents often introduce smartwatches as a step towards owning a smartphone. 

Here are some factors to consider:

  • Target Age: Kid-friendly smartwatches are designed for specific age groups. They may have themes or features that are either too complex for younger children or too childish for older kids. Choose a smartwatch that your child will be excited to wear and use.
  • Battery Life: Activity trackers usually have a rechargeable battery that lasts several weeks. However, full-featured smartwatches that connect to cellular networks typically need to be charged daily. The type of screen, built-in speaker, and camera can impact battery life.
  • Cellular Connectivity: Smartwatches for kids can function independently without needing a smartphone. They have their own cellular connection, which may require a monthly fee. Some watches work with any cellular service, while others are limited to specific providers.
  • Parental Controls: Kid-friendly smartwatches offer various parental control features. Parents can use a smartphone app to adjust settings, limit functionality, and control who can contact their child through the watch. Also read How to Set Parental Controls on iPhone (or iPad).
  • Built-In Games and Activities: Many smartwatches for kids offer themed games and interactive activities. Consider the available options and ensure they are age-appropriate.
  • Available Apps: Some kid-friendly smartwatches have app stores where parents can add optional apps. However, the capabilities of the watch are often determined by the preinstalled apps. For example, the Apple Watch SE has access to the Apple Watch App Store with thousands of apps.

Best Smartwatches For Kids

1. TickTalk 4

TickTalk 4
Specifications
Communication FeaturesVideo, voice, and Wi-Fi calls, Talk-To-Text functionality with preset text responses, voice messaging, photos, emojis, and GIFs
Safety MechanismsAdvanced GPS tracker for real-time location tracking, emergency SOS feature, over 20 customizable parental controls
Health and DisciplineIntegrated activity tracker, daily step targets, Do Not Disturb mode, customizable reminders for essential tasks
Entertainment and CreativityUnlimited music streaming with iHeartRadio Family (exclusive to U.S. users), dual 5-megapixel video cameras for photos/videos
Durability and Battery LifeIP67 water resistance rating, drop and shock-proof technology, 100+ hours of standby time
Suitable as a GiftPerfect for boys, offers fun and peace of mind for years to come

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The TickTalk 4 is the best smartwatch for kids overall. This smartwatch stands out because it has a wide range of impressive features. It has two built-in cameras and can connect to the AT&T or T-Mobile cellular network. This means kids can make video calls, voice calls, and send text messages. It also has emergency and SOS features, as well as the ability to stream music through iHeartRadio Family Access.

Parents have control over the watch through 20-plus parental controls. They can decide which features their child can access using their smartphone. The watch has a pre-approved list of contacts, limiting who the child can communicate with. It also blocks access to social media, games, and unrestricted internet browsing. Parents can track the watch in real-time, see where their child has been, and view the routes they took. This provides peace of mind regarding their child’s location.

Pros:

  • Impressive features: video calling, voice calling, and text messaging
  • 20-plus parental controls
  • Streams kid-friendly music while blocking games, social media, and web browsing

Cons:

  • Cellular service is pay-as-you-go, so a contract plan is not required
  • The watch may be a bit bulky on a child’s wrist.

2. Gabb Watch 3

Gabb Watch 3
SpecificationDetails
Communication FeaturesVoice calls, text messaging (voice, pre-programmed, emoji, custom messages), managed by parent on MyGabb app
Parental ControlsManaged on MyGabb app (Quiet Times, Safe Zones, Volume Control, 100 parent-approved contacts, and more)
Pairing and Gabb IDUse the same MyGabb app login as Gabb Watch 2 to pair Gabb Watch 3 and create/login to Child Gabb ID for secure user profile and settings backup in Gabb Cloud
Safe ZonesParents can create designated areas and receive notifications when the child leaves or enters those zones
Refer a Friend ProgramExisting customers can refer new customers using their account number or phone number for a discount, earning a free month of service for the existing customer and a free accessory for the new customer
Calling CapabilitiesGabb watches can call each other if they are in each other’s approved contacts; emergency contact can be set; cannot call 911, but local police station can be added as an approved contact
Suitable Age RangeNo age restrictions; depends on parent and child’s needs for calling, texting, basic digital skills, GPS tracking, and Safe Zones
Watch BandsColorful silicone, sport, and Star Wars watch bands available; Gabb Watch 2 bands are compatible with Gabb Watch 3
Screen ProtectorIncluded to protect against scratches and cracks
Step CounterGabb Watch 3 has a step counter; steps can be tracked in the MyGabb app under “Gabb Go”
CameraGabb Watch 3 does not have a camera; only Gabb Phone and Gabb Phone Plus have cameras
Contacts ManagementParent-managed on MyGabb app; up to 100 parent-approved contacts
SOS Emergency NotificationTriggered by holding the SOS button (back button) for 4 seconds; alerts the child’s primary contact
Bluetooth CapabilityGabb Watch 3 and all Gabb phones have Bluetooth capabilities
Water ResistanceWater-resistant (not waterproof); can handle drops of water without damage; has an IP68 water resistance rating
Battery LifeUp to 12-48 hours depending on usage; certain features like Gabb Go and GPS tracking may deplete the battery faster
Standalone DeviceGabb Watch 3 is meant to be its own source of communication with its own phone number; works independently from any cell phone
Timer, Stopwatch, and Alarm FeaturesIncluded in the watch
Gabb Move and Mimic by GabbFitness tracking app for kids and memory game for kids, respectively
Gabb CloudFree digital backup service that securely stores data from the Gabb device; backs up settings and Gabb Go progress; data can be restored when upgrading, replacing, factory resetting, or SIM swapping the device
Software UpdatesTwo types of updates: “Update Apps” on Gabb ID app and update app in Settings Page; Wi-Fi connection required
Gabb IDSecure user account for child’s Gabb Watch 3; enables Gabb Cloud and Speech-to-Text functionality

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The Gabb Watch 3 is an improvement over its predecessor, the Gabb Watch 2. It still provides unlimited calling and text messaging, along with the ability to send pre-composed text messages. However, it now includes a software keyboard, speech-to-text feature, and other communication methods suitable for all ages. The watch has a stronger top glass and improved dust and water resistance. It offers voice calling, but not video calling. It allows up to 100 pre-approved contacts, which is more than most kids’ smartwatches. Additional features include custom wallpapers, a calculator, a step and activity tracker, and a virtual pet that kids can take care of, similar to a Tamagotchi.

The Gabb Watch 3 is a solid choice for younger kids or families who prefer to limit access to games, the internet, or a camera. While some tweens may be disappointed by the lack of a camera and games, parents appreciate the watch’s simplicity, extended contact list, multiple quiet time modes (for school and overnight), and alerts when the child leaves school or home. It’s also less distracting in the classroom.

Pros:

  • Built-in SOS/emergency notification feature
  • Safe Zones to alert parents when a child arrives or departs specific locations
  • Various texting options, not just preset messages

Cons:

  • No photo capabilities
  • Full savings are dependent on longer contracts.

3. Apple Watch SE

Apple Watch SE
FeaturesDescription
Cellular ConnectivityStay connected even without your iPhone. Send texts, make calls, and stream music with cellular connectivity, even when traveling internationally. No need to have your iPhone nearby.
Health and Safety FeaturesGet assistance when needed with features like Crash Detection, Fall Detection, and Emergency SOS. Gain insights into your health, including notifications for irregular rhythm, high or low heart rate.
Simply CompatibleSeamlessly works with your Apple devices and services. Automatically unlock your Mac, locate your devices, and make payments with Apple Pay. Requires iPhone 8 or later with the latest iOS version.
Swimproof and StylishWater-resistant up to 50 meters. Available in three finishes and features a redesigned, color-matched back case that reduces carbon emissions by over 80% using a new production process.
Apps on Your WristAccess tens of thousands of apps from the App Store directly on your wrist. Apple Watch is a versatile personal device for various activities.
Easily CustomizableChoose from different sizes, colors, and bands to customize your Apple Watch. Enjoy watch faces with complications tailored to your interests.
Powerful Fitness PartnerThe enhanced Workout app offers new training options and advanced metrics to track your performance. Apple Watch includes three months of free Apple Fitness+.
Family SetupUse Family Setup to manage Apple Watch for family members who do not have an iPhone.

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The Apple Watch SE (2nd Generation) GPS + Cellular is a great smartwatch for kids aged 10 and up. It has features like parental controls, texting, music, and GPS tracking. It doesn’t have a camera or video calling.

With the new iOS 17 and watchOS 10 updates, parents can control their child’s Apple Watch through the Family Setup feature. The GPS + Cellular version of the watch has its own phone number, and parents can decide who the child can communicate with and track their location. If you’re getting an Apple Watch SE for your kid, it’s recommended to choose the GPS + Cellular version for full functionality.

The smartwatch offers voice calling, texting, music streaming, social media access, and internet browsing. Parents can activate optional parental controls to limit certain features. It can also be used with ApplePay for convenient payments.

The Apple Watch SE with cellular is perfect for coordinating after-school activities. It has an interface that connects with their existing devices, is easy to use, reliable, and has excellent parental controls. Her child enjoys the activity tracker and asking Siri questions.

Advantages:

  • It’s a smartwatch with lots of features.
  • It works well with iMessages, so you can easily send and receive messages.
  • You can listen to music, podcasts, and use many different apps.

Disadvantages:

  • It’s quite expensive.
  • It doesn’t have a camera or the ability to make video calls.

4. Fitbit Ace 3 Activity Tracker For Kids

Fitbit Ace 3 Activity Tracker For Kids
FeaturesDescription
Battery LifeKids can spend more time moving and less time charging with up to 8 days of battery life (varies with use and other factors).
Animated Clock FacesThe watch’s animated clock faces grow and develop as kids move more throughout the day, providing visual feedback and motivation.
All-Day Activity TrackingThe watch tracks kids’ activity throughout the day, showing how healthy habits contribute to a healthier life.
Sleep Tracking and Bedtime RemindersKids can form healthy sleep habits with sleep tracking, bedtime reminders, and silent alarms to establish a consistent sleep routine.
Water ResistanceFitbit Ace 3 is water-resistant up to 50 meters, making it suitable for pool parties and resistant to spills during lunchtime.
Virtual Badges and On-Screen CelebrationsKids earn virtual badges and enjoy on-screen celebrations when they achieve their goals, providing a sense of achievement and motivation.
Family Account ManagementA family account allows parents to manage their child’s Ace 3 and their own Fitbit watch or tracker from one convenient place, simplifying management and oversight.

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The Fitbit Ace 3 is an activity tracker designed for kids. It has parental controls and displays the time like a regular watch. Unlike adult fitness trackers, it doesn’t track things like calories, heart rate, or weight loss. Instead, its main purpose is to encourage kids to stay active by reminding them to move and stretch throughout the day. The watch presents daily activity challenges and also offers features like bedtime reminders, animated watch faces, and sleep tracking. It’s a great choice for introducing kids to wearing a watch and teaching them about time management.

Advantages:

  • It’s a simple first watch for kids that helps keep them on track.
  • It motivates kids to be active with badges and other incentives.
  • The battery lasts a long time (up to 8 days) and it’s water-resistant up to 50 meters.

Disadvantages:

  • It doesn’t have communication options, so kids can’t text or make calls.
  • It doesn’t have GPS tracking capabilities.

5. Garmin Vívofit Jr. 3

Garmin Vívofit Jr. 3
FeaturesDescription
Durable and Swim-FriendlyThe fitness tracker is durable and swim-friendly, making it suitable for everyday wear and water activities. It features a color display with multiple watch face options and has a battery life of up to 1 year. The battery is parent replaceable.
Motivates Kids to Achieve Active Minute GoalsKids are motivated to achieve their active minute goals, unlocking app adventures, games, and icons featuring their favorite characters and the most exciting moments from the Infinity Saga.
Chore ManagementParents can easily manage chores using the Garmin Jr. app. They can assign tasks, schedule alerts and alarms, and reward kids for good behavior through the app.
Comprehensive TrackingThe fitness tracker tracks estimated steps, sleep, and 60 minutes of daily recommended activity, allowing parents to see the full picture of their kid’s activity levels.

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The Garmin Vívofit Jr. 3 is a combination of a smartwatch and an activity tracker. It comes in different themes like Star Wars, Disney princess, and Marvel, or you can choose a non-character-based theme. It has a colorful display and is waterproof. The watch features a clock, alarm, timer, and stopwatch. It also tracks steps and measures distance traveled. It provides reminders for chores, has a task timer, and a to-do list manager. Instead of needing to recharge, it uses a replaceable watch battery that can last up to one year. The watch has an ICE widget that stores a child’s name and contact info for emergencies. However, it doesn’t have communication features like texting or calling, and it doesn’t have GPS tracking capabilities.

Advantages:

  • The battery lasts for one year, so no frequent charging is required.
  • It features popular character themes that kids may enjoy.
  • The watch is waterproof, making it suitable for various activities.

Disadvantages:

  • It doesn’t have communication options like texting or calling.
  • It doesn’t have GPS tracking capabilities.

6. Little Tikes Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch

Little Tikes Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch
FeaturesDescription
Interactive RobotThe Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch is interactive and full of personality. It speaks gibberish, giggles, and cycles through more than 100 expressions. It features a calculator, stopwatch, timer, alarm clock, calendar, reminders, and over 50 watch faces.
Awesome GamesThe smartwatch contains a variety of brain, arcade, and fitness games to keep kids entertained, active, and learning. Kids can earn rewards to unlock additional features for more playtime.
Photos and VideosThe Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch has two built-in cameras that can capture videos and take selfies. Kids can customize their photos with decorative stickers and borders during editing. The watch can store up to 3,000 photos with a resolution of 640 x 480 pixels or 30 minutes of video with a resolution of 320 x 240 pixels.
Track StepsThe built-in pedometer, dance activity game, and augmented reality Walk n’ Wonder game encourage kids to stay active and keep track of their steps.
Parental ControlsParents can set limits on screen time and approve wireless connectivity connections, allowing them to have control and oversight of their child’s usage.
Easy to UseThe splashproof Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch features a kid-friendly touchscreen, an adjustable wristband, a built-in rechargeable battery, and a micro-USB cable for charging and transferring photos and videos to a computer.
Age RecommendationThe Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch is suitable for kids aged 6 years and above.

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The Little Tikes Tobi 2 Robot Smartwatch is a fun and educational toy for kids. It can tell the time, play games, and offer various activities. However, it doesn’t have the ability to make calls or send text messages. It’s more focused on providing entertainment and learning experiences rather than communication features. The smartwatch has two cameras for taking digital pictures and can store a large number of images or up to 30 minutes of video. It also has a step counter, alarm clock, and calculator. The watch features an AI with a playful personality that displays over 100 expressions. It includes several brain, fitness, and arcade-style games for single-player challenges. If two Tobi 2 watches are nearby, kids can compete against each other in head-to-head games. This makes it a good choice for siblings. Parents have the ability to set screen time limits, as well as reminders and more.

Advantages:

  • It offers built-in games and activities for entertainment and learning.
  • The two cameras allow kids to take and store many digital images.
  • The watch is waterproof, making it suitable for everyday use.

Disadvantages:

  • It doesn’t have cellular or Wi-Fi connectivity.
  • It doesn’t support text messaging or voice calling capabilities.

7. Xplora XGO3

Xplora XGO3
FeatureDescription
Camera2-megapixel camera
MessagingPre-written messages, audio messages, and photos can be sent through the Xplora app
SetupEasy setup with quick start guide, SIM card included
PlansXplora offers plans starting at $10 per month
InstructionsInsufficient instructions; required internet and customer service assistance to fully use the watch
ConnectivityWorks on 2G, 3G, or 4G networks; may need to disconnect from Wi-Fi for messages
Audio QualityDecent audio quality for phone calls
Location TrackingAccurate live location tracking with frequent updates, timestamps, and 72-hour history
School ModeRestricts functionality to displaying the time during school hours
Additional FeaturesAlarms, calculator, step counter that rewards with virtual coins for every 1,000 steps
DurabilityDurable design for kids’ activities; screen protector not included
Screen Protector CostScreen protector can be purchased separately for $17
Band OptionsAvailable in various colors for personalization
Key SpecificationsBattery Life: Up to 72 hours on standby

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The Xplora XGO3 is a smartwatch for kids that stands out because it has a 2-megapixel camera. Kids can take pictures and send them to their approved contacts, which is a great way to stay connected with family. Setting up the watch is easy with the quick start guide, and it already comes with a SIM card installed. You just need to choose one of Xplora’s plans, starting at $10 per month. However, the instructions provided were not sufficient, so we had to use the internet and customer service to figure out how to use the watch completely.

When it comes to messaging, kids can only send pre-written messages. They can also send audio messages and photos, which contacts receive through the Xplora app on Apple and Android devices. Sometimes, you may need to disconnect the watch from Wi-Fi for the messages to go through, but it works on 2G, 3G, or 4G networks, so this isn’t a big problem. The phone call audio quality is decent.

The live location tracking is impressively accurate, even in busy areas like New York City. It updates frequently, provides timestamps, and keeps a location history for 72 hours. Parents will appreciate the school mode, which allows kids to only see the time during school hours to avoid distractions. The smartwatch also has alarms, a calculator, and a step counter that rewards kids with virtual coins for every 1,000 steps. They can use these coins to play games or change the watch face.

The watch is durable and can withstand kids’ activities, but it would be better if it came with a screen protector for extra protection. You can purchase one separately for $17. The band comes in various colors, so your child can choose their favorite.

In conclusion, while the instructions could have been more detailed, we love this watch for its camera, location tracking, and the ability to add more contacts compared to other options. It’s also a budget-friendly choice.

Pros:

  • The location tracking is very accurate.
  • You can take pictures and send them to others.
  • School mode makes sure you only use essential features during school hours.
  • The step counter gives rewards for reaching certain goals.

Cons:

  • The instructions could be better.

Conclusion

In conclusion, smartwatches can be a great alternative if your child isn’t ready for a phone. They are safe and helpful tools that allow families to explore the digital world together. With these smart watches we introduced in this article,, you can stay connected with your child and ensure their safety, even when you’re not with them.

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