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Customer Review

The manufacturer commented on the review belowSee comments
255 of 270 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not super impressed., November 18, 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:5.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: LeapFrog LeapPad2 Explorer Disney Princess Bundle, Purple (Toy)
This is a nice toy, and they've made some improvements since LeapPad 1. The front and back camera option is especially nice. I was very excited to see that this bundle came with a Disney theme. But now that I've gone through setting it up and testing it out, I'm really not that impressed. With it's price tag being what it is ... in hindsight I wish I'd just bought a regular tablet for my daughter - like the Kindle fire.

First, a note ...

STICKERS: Like someone else mentioned, I also thought the stickers were missing and was disappointed. THE STICKERS ARE THERE! Just as I was taking all the packaging out to the recycling bin, I found them. MAN! They are hidden WELL, but they're there. There are two problems. First, the sticker "sheets" are probably much smaller than what you think you're looking for (they're only about 2"x3"-ish), and second ... they're HIDDEN! They're inside one of the many, many folded cardboard compartments and sealed up with tape. Honestly, it's a terrible place to put them - I'll bet half of parents will throw them away not knowing where to find them. But if you read this -- keep looking! They're there.

Now, some issues ...

1) TOUCH SCREEN: It's not all that receptive/reactive to touch. You're better off using the stylus, but for the younger crowd, that could get a little frustrating. I was buying this for the touch-screen aspect, so this is disappointing.

2) THE CASE: Yes, the case could use a redesign. It's CUTE, but ... there's no strap or elastic for the pad, so when this thing is unzipped by little hands, the LeapPad is undoubtedly going to fall out. The other side of the case is designed for a spare stylus and cartridges. If you, like me, are going to download the apps from the app store and have no intention of using cartridges, this will be useless for you. I'd rather they included a place for headphones. Also, if you have a younger child (3), note ... the case is not super easy to zip/unzip. It's not impossible, but ... the stiff zipper might be a little tricky for tiny hands.

3) BE PREPARED - THE APPS ARE EXPENSIVE: If you're expecting $1.99 apps (like on iTunes), don't. The cheapest app I've seen was $5 and the "good" games are about $25 each. It's going to cost you some cheddar to fill this thing up. After selecting just a few apps to get started, I viewed my cart and saw I was already over $100 ... which made me wonder if I should've just sprung for an iPad mini. Also, note, with this bundle when it says you get to pick an app, you don't get to choose any app you want out of the app store. You must pick one of four specific apps.

4) LACKLUSTER VIDEO QUALITY: For $7.50 each I downloaded some video apps of Nickelodeon shows (Fresh Beat Band, Dora, etc.) I just tried them out ... ugh! I'm not pleased with the resolution / screen quality. I mean, it's okay - but ... not great. I was hoping the LeapPad 2 would be a little nicer in this area. Not so much.

5) NON-REMOVABLE ADS!?!? Okay, I bought this thing, I paid through the nose for apps ... why is there still a "Leap Frog Sneak Peaks" ADVERTISEMENT permanently on the screen for my daughter to click on??? Seems wrong. I'm annoyed by that.

6) ON THE HEAVY SIDE: I put the four AA batteries in this and ... it's pretty heavy. Not terrible, but - I have a feeling little three year old hands are going to get tired out from this.

7) CREEPY MP3 ERRORS: I got the MP3 player app so that I could load my daughter's favorite songs onto the pad. I loaded a batch of perfectly fine MP3s - all encoded the same - all of which work properly on the computer or on my own mp3 player. HOWEVER - once they got onto the LeapPad, some of them (randomly) only play SUPER slow with low low voices - like CREEPY low. Scary! Doesn't seem to be much rhyme or reason to which ones aren't playing properly. I loaded 63 songs - 22 worked okay, the other 41 have this playing slow issue. :( Also, the player leaves much to be desired. It's not graphical at all, so if your child doesn't read yet, they'll have no visual identifiers to help them find the songs they want. And even if they DO read - the screen only shows about 20 characters, so if the song title is long or shows the artist's name first, it may become impossible to identify the songs (if you've got several songs by the same artist with more than 20 characters in their name, the song titles will be pushed off the screen and you can't see them.)

8) CAN'T LOAD VIDEO? The computer interface allows you to upload mp3s (not that they actually work on the other end ... see above), but it doesn't seem to allow you to upload videos into the LeapPad. I'm guessing this is because they want to make sure you're purchasing videos from the app store.

9) SCREEN REARRANGES? I took the time to move all the tiles around so that the apps I think my daughter will like best appear on the first screen. By the way, you can't do this on the computer interface, you must move each app icon on the LeapPad itself. At any rate, I took a few minutes and did that, and about 10 minutes later (after I'd explored a few of the new apps) I noticed that some of the app tiles had rearranged themselves and moved to different screens. ? Not sure if that was a fluke. I hope it's not an ongoing thing. It's going to really confuse my daughter if the apps are moving around all the time. :(

Hope that helps! Don't get me wrong, it's a nice little toy - these are just a few observations. If I had known all of this before I purchased it ... honestly, I probably would've gone with a Kindle Fire or an iPad mini instead. I think it would've been worth it in the long run, especially considering how much the leappad apps cost. C'est la vie!
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The manufacturer commented on this review(What's this?)
Posted on Nov 26, 2012 5:07:49 PM PST
Hello!

Thanks for all the great feedback, we saw a few points of confusion that we wanted to clear up for you to help your LeapPad experience and hopefully others reading as well.

The Sneak Peeks can be taken off the device by accessing the Parent Settings, press the "Volume Up" and "Home" key at the same time and at the bottom of the menu you can toggle to take them off.

For the MP3 songs playing slow or fast, we have an FAQ from LeapFrog.com on how why this occurs here: http://bit.ly/UdcaFe
The issue with fast or slow playing MP3 songs is due to the way the MP3 file was originally encoded. If your MP3 file was encoded with a different sample rate, the playback of the song will be distorted. Several free media players such as iTunes allow a user to re-encode MP3 files to standard sample rates. Once an MP3 file has been re-encoded to a standard sample rate, it can be re-synced to the LeapPad/LeapPad2 and it will now play back correctly.

Thanks for taking the time to provide this review, we are always happy to pass feedback like this along for future consideration.
 
 
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Comments

Tracked by 4 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 12 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 25, 2012 5:50:00 AM PST
[Deleted by the author on Nov 25, 2012 5:51:40 AM PST]

Posted on Nov 25, 2012 5:50:50 AM PST
M. Miller says:
a lot of good points here -- I agree the apps are SUPER expensive and really you also have to get the battery case (another $35) otherwise you're buying AA all the time. Having said all that and we've had it about 2 months more, my daughter plays with this MUCH more than my iPad or her kindle fire. For certain age group, despite the shortfalls above (which I agree with), it is a more age-appropriate learning tablet. The reading and language, and math and science, apps from leapfrog are far superior than the apps on iTunes, and fit better with what they do in preschool.

A comment by the manufacturer   (What's this?)
Posted on Nov 26, 2012 5:07:49 PM PST
Hello!

Thanks for all the great feedback, we saw a few points of confusion that we wanted to clear up for you to help your LeapPad experience and hopefully others reading as well.

The Sneak Peeks can be taken off the device by accessing the Parent Settings, press the "Volume Up" and "Home" key at the same time and at the bottom of the menu you can toggle to take them off.

For the MP3 songs playing slow or fast, we have an FAQ from LeapFrog.com on how why this occurs here: http://bit.ly/UdcaFe
The issue with fast or slow playing MP3 songs is due to the way the MP3 file was originally encoded. If your MP3 file was encoded with a different sample rate, the playback of the song will be distorted. Several free media players such as iTunes allow a user to re-encode MP3 files to standard sample rates. Once an MP3 file has been re-encoded to a standard sample rate, it can be re-synced to the LeapPad/LeapPad2 and it will now play back correctly.

Thanks for taking the time to provide this review, we are always happy to pass feedback like this along for future consideration.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 8:50:51 PM PST
D. Hogan says:
Thank you for your tip about the parent settings - I'll try that.

For the MP3s, though ... all of the MP3s were encoded at the same time, in the same way - standard sample rate. In fact, songs from the exact same album - all ripped the same, all encoded the same - play differently. Some have the slow play, others are fine. ?

Posted on Dec 12, 2012 12:01:24 PM PST
TrainDad says:
This review is more in line with my kids' experience with their Leapsters... questionable durability, sub-par screens... etc. Lots of break downs and we've had multiple units because of the game investments. We've found the Nintendo DS line to be much more durable. I have a Leappad 2 in my Amazon cart right now but am really hesitant to buy because of past experiences.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 12, 2012 12:08:07 PM PST
D. Hogan says:
My daughter has had the LeapPad for over a week now. She sort of likes it, but loses interest pretty quickly. I think mostly she just likes the idea of it being "hers". M. Miller (above) mentions the apps available on LeapPad being better for her age group and holding his daughter's interest more than the iPad apps. But I've actually found the opposite to be true for my daughter. Honestly the apps on my iPad hold her interest better and seem to be easier to figure out for her. Also, the LeapPad has had a few more quirks ... when she has the headphones on the sound has just randomly cut out and gone silent several times - in games, music and videos. I'm using the "official" Leap Frog headphones, too. If you unplug the headphones then plug them back in it seems to fix it, but it's a little annoying. She's gotten pretty frustrated with a few apps because she can't figure them out. And on a couple she's asked for my help and I can't figure them out either. All in all, I'll just say this ... my iPad and the kids' apps there hold her interest FAR FAR longer than anything on the LeapPad. That's probably not true for every child, but mine still wants my iPad over the LeapPad.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 12, 2012 5:47:38 PM PST
[Deleted by the author on Dec 12, 2012 5:48:13 PM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 25, 2013 10:46:54 AM PST
Rlcasper says:
I tried the home / volume up key on several different screens and cannot get any type of "Parent Settings" option to show up. Was this true or is there a trick to it??

Posted on Nov 28, 2013 1:26:04 PM PST
JOHN FROM NJ says:
How old is the child? The Leap Frog appears to be a device for kids just starting out. An Amazon Kindle appears to be at least for pre teens or teenagers who know what they are into. You pay for the product. For under a hundred bucks today, what do you expect?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 28, 2013 2:32:22 PM PST
D. Hogan says:
She was three, now four. And for that price I expect it to work as it claims to. :)
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