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The Best Tablet For Kids

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Don't trust your little one with your new iPad? Luckily, there are plenty of tablets designed especially for them

A tablet for kids can be a great way of introducing your little one to technology. It’s not just another source of entertainment: a tablet can expand your child’s world, giving them access to thousands of apps designed to make education both fun and enriching. From language learning and science quizzes to spelling puzzles and “edutainment” games, the app market is awash with programs designed to delight and educate your child – and give you some peace and quiet.

But which tablet is the best? There are all sorts of child-centric devices on the market and it can be a daunting task to choose the best one. Don't worry, though: we've done the hard work so you don't have to. Below, you'll find our list of the best tablets for kids you can buy, followed by a guide to what you should look out for. 

    The best tablets for kids

    1. Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) Kids Edition

    Amazon’s latest big-screened tablet for kids is its best yet. The screen is 2in larger than the Fire HD 8 Kids Edition, it's thinner and lighter than the previous model and the 1,200p resolution display is 10% brighter too. It also comes with a bit more RAM (3GB) and supports Dolby Atmos Audio.

    You're paying a bit more for the kids' version of the Fire HD 10, but that extra cash comes with a child-proof case (with kickstand), a two-year worry-free guarantee that covers accidental damage and a 12-month Fire for Kids Unlimited subscription, which offers thousands of hours worth of entertaining and educational content across videos, games, apps and ebooks. It also comes with 32GB of storage, although it also supports microSD cards up to 512GB if you need more space. 

    Key specs - Screen size: 10.1in; Operating system: Fire OS; RAM: 3GB; Storage: 32GB (expandable up to 512GB via microSD); Camera: 2MP; Weight: 716g

    2. Apple iPad mini 5 (2019)

    This is Apple’s fifth-gen iPad mini, and the definitive mini-tablet. It’s got a gorgeous anti-reflection IPS display with a stunning 1,536 x 2,048 resolution for crystal-clear images. Its design, style and build quality are, as always, impeccable. That said, you’ll probably want to protect it with a case if a child is using it.

    The small screen size makes it ideal for little hands, and at a mere 300g it’s ultra-portable. The ultimate companion for children on long car journeys, it can be packed full of games, learning apps and ebooks. If you’ve got a Netflix or Amazon Prime Video account, you’ll have 64GB worth of storage to download your child’s favourite programmes and movies for offline viewing. A 256GB version is also available.

    Key specs - Screen size: 7.9in; Operating system: iPadOS 13; RAM: 3GB; Storage: 64GB; Camera: 8MP; Weight: 300g

    3. Amazon Fire 7 Kids Edition

    If you're put off by the price of the Amazon Fire HD 10 (2021) Kids Edition, there's a much cheaper solution. The cheapest, and still usable, tablet you can buy these days is Amazon's 7in Fire tablet. It's not the prettiest device, but you can't do much better for the price.

    The Fire 7 Kids Edition comes with a bumper case, two-year guarantee, added parental controls and one year of Fire for Kids Unlimited with a selection of apps, games and videos for your little ones.

    Key specs - Screen size: 7in; Operating system: Fire OS; RAM: 1GB; Storage: 16GB; Camera: 2MP; Weight: 295g

    4. Amazon Fire HD 8 Kids Edition

    The Fire HD 8 is a well-rounded tablet. With a faster processor, more RAM, an extended battery life and quicker USB-C charging, the Fire HD 8 was a remarkable step-up from its predecessor.
    If your child is after a tablet with an 8in screen, decent internals and software that's simple to use, the Fire HD 8 is still a remarkable choice.

    Key specs - Screen size: 8in; Operating system: Fire OS; RAM: 2GB; Storage: 32GB or 64GB; Camera: 2MP; Weight: 355g

    How to choose the best tablet for your child

    What can my child use their tablet for?

    Just like regular tablets, children’s tablets come with a wide selection of apps, games and educational resources. The exact choice of apps available will depend on the operating system but can include everything from music-making programs and creative skill-builders to digital painting and language learning, and new apps are becoming available all the time.

    When should I buy my child a tablet?

    There are tablets suitable for children as young as primary school age, but only you can judge when your child is ready to handle a tablet - and, most importantly, when you feel comfortable giving them one. Some tablets are designed to grow with your child as they get older, adapting to their changing wants and needs. The latter will set you back more but will be worth the investment if it saves you buying a brand-new tablet a year or two down the line.

    Is it safe to give my child a tablet?

    As technology keeps advancing, cyber threats have never been more common. The good news is that tablets are generally much safer than mobile phones or laptops, so they’re the best first piece of technology for small hands.

    The tablets we’ve chosen all include features designed to keep little ones safe and include parental controls for added peace of mind. Even the least tech-savvy parents can be confident that their child won’t get into trouble online.

    What else do I need to look out for?

    Tablets aren’t cheap, and durability is crucial. The best tablets for kids are designed to withstand any drops, bumps and falls, so you don’t need to worry too much about damage, but if you’re still worried, a specially designed case will protect your child’s tablet even more.

    Consider storage too: a bigger capacity will add to the price, but it means you can install more apps without having to constantly clear out old ones to free up space – and may even extend the lifetime of the tablet.

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