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Kindle Fire HD for kids

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Initial post: Nov 16, 2012 9:07:24 AM PST
DP Rocket says:
I'm considering buying a Fire HD for my both of my sons for Christmas. They are 8 and 7 years old. I'm not sure if this is a great idea or not, but they are both begging for a Nintendo DS. I think something like a tablet would offer some gaming (I really don't think they need a full on gaming system) and the potential for some other entertainment and (hopefully) some educational value.

A few questions: I like the HD because of what I read about the ability to restrict some time/access. This has obvious importance since my kids will be using it. How exactly does the FreeTime features work and is it really helpful? Is the system too crippled with it?

Also, is it possible to use just one Amazon Prime account went 2 devices? I would likely purchase the tablets with my account and have one Prime account (mine). Would both devices be able to access Prime content? Or, do I need to have two separate Prime accounts?

I'm also considering Nexus tablets but it seems like there are a few more safety controls on the HD that could prove beneficial.

Finally, what thoughts do any of you have about the potential for educational value of a Fire HD. Obviously it's an entertainment powerhouse, but what educational value?

Posted on Nov 16, 2012 9:27:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 16, 2012 9:59:34 AM PST
Actually, Nintendo does offer some good educational games (mostly language learning software, but also cooking, math, etc.), and these games are available for the DS. Nintendo is more focused on kid-friendly games than the other choices. Just throwing that out there. :-)

On the Kindle Fire HD and current-gen Fire, the FreeTime feature allows parents to restrict how much time kids can have playing games or doing other activities, accessing the archives/anything you deem as "too adult", or using the Kindle at all.... there can be a little restriction, a lot, or none. You can set up multiple profiles on one device, all of which can have different restrictions. All of these profiles are linked to the same Amazon account. And to answer your question about multiple tablets on one Prime account, yes, you can have many as long as they are all registered to your account (I think the limit is 7 still.)

The potential for educational applications in tablets is huge, and Amazon is pushing hard on school-oriented programs right now. If you'd like to see what's available, you can browse educational apps here on the site without needing a tablet first.

One thing I want to caution you on, though, is that most tablets are not really toys. They do break, and there have been numerous posts here from angry parents/grandparents who were SHOCKED when their Fire or Kindle reader broke after they let a kid use it. The screens can shatter if dropped or hit hard, which can result in dangerously sharp pieces (as well as an unusable tablet), so it would be very wise to invest in a screen protector and a very good hard case, not just a sleeve. It's up to you to tell how mature your kids are, and if they're able to treat a delicate device with the care that's required.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 16, 2012 9:56:20 AM PST
Free Time is already available for the 2nd Gen (non-HD) Fire.

As for Free Time, I think it will work well if all your content is from Amazon. Some users have been reporting that Harry Potter books (from Pottermore) can not be added to the Free Time profiles. Others have not been able to add public library books. And others have had problems with Free Time controlling app useage, like netflix. SO, there are obviously some drawbacks, but no parental cotrol software can take the place of the actually parent controlling the device's usage with their child.
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  3
Total posts:  3
Initial post:  Nov 16, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 16, 2012

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