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on November 20, 2012
Just got this in the mail a couple of days ago and wanted to try it out before I put it under the tree for my son.

First, the packaging was awesome and the experience of opening it will be great on Christmas morning.

Second, the start up was easy. I wanted to make sure it was totally set up for my son because he's going to be anxious to get going on the games. It was only a few steps and I set it up with a Google account.

Third, I'm really impressed with the spending card. My son is 9 and while he's been good about asking before using my credit card for games on my iPhone, I like that he'll have his own card that I can pre-load and have him learn how to think before buying his games. I have a feeling he'll be choosier about now that he's spending his own money :)

The only downside is that since this is run on wifi, some games won't work unless without a connection. Other than that, the MG feels sturdy without being hulking or heavy. The screen says it is made of gorilla glass so I'm hoping it withstands the abuse my son will give it. It feels stronger than my iPhone though and he's put that thing through tough times!
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on January 1, 2013
I bought five of these for my kids for Christmas and originally it did not work well (see first review below). I sent them back for a refund. I will say that one of the best things about MG is the customer service team. I was contacted almost immediately and informed there was a fix in place that solved the freezing issues. I was offered a chance to try the MG again and sent a complimentary MG. My kids played on it non-stop for hours and NO FREEZING at all! The fix worked great... this is definitely a wonderful game for kids. Thank you MG team for the update and the chance to test it out.

I bought five of these for my kids for Christmas. I was excited when I opened them to set them up prior to Christmas - even downloaded a couple of Android games. Set up Google accounts, etc. and repackaged. Kids thought I was the best - youngest even called it her "phone". Shortly thereafter, the units started to freeze and shutoff randomly. You'd touch the screen and a totally different app would open. I did the pinch multiple times, but who wants to wait between playing over and over again to restart the unit! Very disappointing - shipping them back and now need to figure out what to get them as a replacement. smh
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on December 14, 2012
Moms and Dads it's time to get our freedom back! That is the freedom of having your smartphone back in your own hands where it belongs!

The MG Game System is a totally awesome NEW portable game system that runs off of the Google Play via Wi-Fi, which means your child has access to thousands of FREE apps and allows your children the freedom to download the apps they want with a prepaid allowance that their parents set.

It's super slim so your child will have no problem toting it around in their pocket just like a smart phone. It has a sleek design so your child will want to pull it out in front of their friends and show it off. But best of all? Us parents get our devices back! Woohoo!

With the $149.99 price tag it's totally affordable considering how much I paid for my iPhone. I am purchasing a second unit because my children and I loved the first one so much!

This portable game system is definitely a MUST BUY for older children, tweens and teens!
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on November 24, 2012
I bought 2 of these for my children for Christmas, but I had to play with one (secretly) when they arrived. It is a good size for their little hands and I think they will have a lot of fun with them.
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on February 3, 2013
If you're looking for a really cheap way to get into Android gaming this is a great product, just get what you pay for.

They claim that since this is built specifically for gaming that it's a faster gaming experience than playing on a phone but that has proven false for me. I have a 2 year old Droid phone and all the games on it run much faster and smoother than on the PlayMG. The PlayMG loads games slower and features way more stutter than I've ever seen on the phone.

The touch screen is pretty poor. One side is very unresponsive. Games where you need to "pop" things to earn points very quickly end up being harder than they need to be or impossible because when things pop on the unresponsive side you have to tap them 5 or 6 times or push really hard and you still miss them most of the time. Other games end up being hard or impossible because they have things you need to touch around the edges of the screen and on the PlayMG it's very difficult to touch anything along the edges. Even Angry Birds is difficult because as you try to pull your slingshot thingie back, the PlayMG will stop recognizing your touch and fire before you want to, leading your bird to just dribble forward 2 feet.

Battery life is terrible. Once again the 2 year old Droid phone I have will play games for hours without needing a charge. The PlayMG lasts an hour to 90 minutes at most. My unit spends more time on the charger or laying dead on the table than it does playing games.

The built in Wifi is by far the most annoying thing. It loses connection every 5-10 minutes. Every single time it goes to sleep, the connection goes off. Play a game, exit the game, you no longer have connection. Set the thing down to download updates from the app store, you'll only end up with half them. I am constantly having to go into settings and turn WiFi off and back on to get it to work.

If you're poor like me and can deal with these nagging issues, it's a decent product. For a kid that doesn't know any better, it's a nice buy. But if you can buy a decent Droid smartphone instead, that's still the way to go.
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on January 25, 2014
My only complaint is power management: this device doesn't seem to have any. Even with the WiFi turned off, it will lose 7% of a full charge overnight. What is it doing? And playing a resource-intensive game drains the battery it what seems like no time. If you buy this to keep your child entertained in the car, be sure to bring along a charger and a cord long enough to have it plugged in while they play.

It did freeze up once, but applying the “pinch of death” (by holding down the ‘Vol –’ and ‘Brightness’ buttons at the same time) two times in a row got it going again. Every device I have that's this complicated requires the occasional reboot, so I mention the lone freeze-up as a compliment, not a complaint.

On the whole, I really like the thing. I don't want an actual smart phone because I don't want to have to pay the monthly data charges. This thing does everything that an Android smartphone will do, except for connect to a cell phone network for data, messaging, etc. It's an Android phone without the phone.

It runs the Chrome web browser, and the Google Maps app. Yes, you need a WiFi connection for those to work, but in an urban environment, it's not that hard to find one—most McDonalds and all Starbucks offer free WiFi. As do all public libraries, many hospitals, etc.

Offline, there are other mapping apps you can use, plus you can play games (obviously), or listen to music or watch videos which you have previously stored on the micro-SD card. Oh, and there's a number of PDF viewers that work, too. Indeed, I have yet to have an app in the Android Market not work on the MG.

Improve the battery and the power management, and this would be a serious competitor for the iPod Touch, IMO.
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on November 22, 2012
A wrapped package sat there waiting to be unwrapped by my now 11 year old Birthday boy...he kept saying "HMMMMM, wonder what is in that box"...Mostly because he had no idea, as it was not the size or shape of any gift he had it was a SURPRISE about to be opened.

A Surprise it was - he opened it and laid his eyes on the newest hand help gaming device no child had ever seen ( at least in his neighborhood) yes, he had just received his New MG Portable Android Wi-Fi Game System an item he had not requested but one he was about to become addicted to.

The MG Portable Android Wi-Fi Game System has been non-stop play over the past 2 weeks playing favorite games such as SA Hero, MBA Jam and A Need For Speed. The device travels with us during our everyday errands or on road trips to our cabin.

If you are looking for a SURPRISE Fun gift to give I highly recommend the MG Portable Android Wi-Fi Game System - it comes pre-loaded with great games which means no more high priced games to be purchased. There are plenty of free downloadable App games as well as inexpensive ones as low as 99 cents each.

For us moms the best part is the "Remote Trust" a feature that allows parents to view their kid's activity from a distance. Add your email to the system at set-up and then you can receive updates on your computer or smartphone about your child's MG activity and the SpendSmart(TM) Prepaid MasterCard(R) a reloadable debit account allowing you to create "game allowances" that the teen can use for App purchases.

Enjoy the Surprise Fun!
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on January 2, 2013
This was a gift for my 7 year old son for Christmas. Before Christmas, I checked it out, charge it up and played some games. I wanted to make sure this would work well for my son. He was so excited Christmas morning when he got this. And he was even more excited about showing it to relatives that evening. Before we left home, we charged it. (we could tell it needed to be charged.) It worked fine all morning, then when we arrived at our relatives house, it stopped working. We tried charging it for awhile. My husband, son and I were very disappointed. Then my husband pushed all the buttons at once and it started working. The next day the screen went all white. It didn't respond to anything we did for about an hour. My husband pushed all the buttons at once again, then it worked. Two days later it did the same thing. I pushed all the buttons and it started working again. I'm giving it 4 stars, cause it's been over a week since my son got it and he enjoys playing the games. He loves it! But I don't like that it stop working all of a sudden and it needs to be charge so much.
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on January 19, 2013
My 9 year old son has very much enjoyed the MG -- it certainly has frozen a few times, and the online support at the manufacturer's site was very helpful in showing how to deal with it. Unlike other machines, this works more like a phone and so requires certain behaviors (using back key to stop apps, for instance) in order to keep it from crashing. My son can now unfreeze it on his own, has learned how to keep it charged, and is getting a handle on dealing with updates and such. Having the whole Android app universe open to him has been a blast. He received a google play card from his uncle, so was able to add $25 for those apps he wanted to pay for. He does not seem frustrated by any of the idiosyncrasies involved -- just accepts them as part of using this device.

As for me, I will happily let him pay for apps he wants by using google play cards (he is accustomed to having to pay for his virtual purchases -- I still cannot quite wrap my mind around paying real money for non-real items:-))! But I just canceled the BillMyParents gig. First, "registering" was not nearly as straightforward as the fancy advert that came with the game made it sound. The card that comes with is NOT pre-equipped for fast loading; it is a dummy credit card to add pizzazz. Parents will have to go to the billmyparents site, register, use their own credit card to open an account, then wait for the real card to be MAILED to the house -- you have to get the real item for any of the electronic services associated with it to work. It is just a prepaid debit card -- not dedicated to the machine, which for some reason (the ads perhaps?) was the impression I had. So, I went through the registration process, activated the card when it arrived, and tried several times to actually get it the account really set up, all to no avail. Billmyparents had no problem taking my $$ (it is being refunded), but couldn't manage to get the account up and running. This is not Amazon's fault, but it does make me wonder about the MG manufacturers. The real problem for me, though, were all the hidden fees associated with the card! $3.95 a month just to have the thing -- doesn't matter whether it's being used or not. Then, there are fees associated with loading the card, unless you directly debit from a checking account. All in all, I find the name "Bill my Parents" to be quite accurate. I canceled the account and cut up the card.
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on December 27, 2012
Instructions need to clearly spell out the software update in the setup instructions. MGplayer customer service was quick and helpful but we had spent several hours with the player locking up and had to reset the system and add the apps back on.
The billmyparents card is a ripoff since they take 0.50 on every transaction...Buy a gift card and be done with it.
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