Kids/Babies
Octopus smartwatch teaches kids time and good habits

Kids’ smartwatches tend to merely be stripped-down versions of standard smartwatches, with fewer features but more colorful designs.

Octopus is a twist on kids’ smartwatches, featuring a simple, icon-based user interface designed to teach children good habits and the concept of time, while fostering independence, responsibility and self-esteem. The watch works in conjunction with Android and iOS mobile devices that allow parents to manage Octopus from their own smartphones and tablets. Octopus ships in March at $79, but Kickstarter backers can order one for a pledge starting at $49 for early birds. Its makers hope to raise $50,000 by July 22.

The design of Octopus sets it apart from many other kids smartwatches, such as Miiya. That it’s water resistant is a plus, but being waterproof would be preferable for any kids’ smartwatch considering how likely it is that the device will get wet at some point. More importantly, Octopus doesn’t –- at least for now –- have the ability to alert parents as soon as their child is about to be out of range. That’s a feature that its makers are working on and want to make available by the time it ships … or at least as a free software update later on.

 

Jeff Berman is a Long Island-based freelance reporter, who has also contributed stories to publications including TheStreet and the consumer electronics magazines Dealerscope and TWICE. He previously worked as a senior editor and deputy managing editor of the trade newsletter Consumer Electronics Daily, published by Warren Communications News.