Garmin has launched a kid's GPS smartwatch – as the race for wearables for children kicks off.
We’ve been waiting a long time, but the kid’s smartwatch is upon us. And the Garmin Bounce is one of a new line of trackers from big wearable brands.
The Garmin Bounce uses an LTE connection, so parents can locate and communicate with their children.
Kids can also send messages to pre-approved numbers, and to other Bounce smartwatches.
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As well as LTE, the Garmin Bounce features GPS – so parents can check in on the location of their child. What’s more, they can set geofenced boundaries, so if their child leaves a certain location, such as school, home, or other areas, they can be immediately notified.
Garmin has a long history with kid’s fitness trackers, thanks to its Vivofit Jnr range. And many of those features are coming across here, too.
First off, there’s fitness tracking on board. Health metrics such as sleep, steps, and active minutes are all tracked – as well as walking, running, biking, and pool swimming.
And there’s also a whole gamification aspect, which enables kids to unlock rewards for activity goals and household chores.
All of this can be controlled and set by parents, and chores to complete can be sent directly to the Bounce. This can help kids manage their time, and a reminder can be set for things like doing homework or cleaning their room.
The LTE connection is a little tough on battery life, and it will last around two days between charges.
The price of the Garmin Bounce is pretty low at $149 – but you will need a subscription to use the connected features, such as messaging and geolocation. Without these, the Bounce is pretty overkill, so you’ll need to factor in the $9.99. You don’t need to go out there and buy a data plan, and it’s all managed by Garmin.
The kids tracker race has officially kicked off.
There has been plenty of options for parents from the likes of the Xplora X3GO and Vtech Kidizoom DX2 – but there’s been a lack of movement from the biggest name in tech.
Kids smartwatches have been a huge success in China, but it’s been a slow process to see interest in the West.
That’s changed quickly. Fitbit and Google are heavily tipped to be working on a kid’s smartwatch, and now Garmin has thrown its hat in the ring.
Apple already offers the option to turn an existing Apple Watch into a kid’s tracker using the Family Sharing. Surely it’s a matter of time until it makes an Apple Watch designed for children.
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