How The LG Gizmo Watch Can Help You Watch Your Kid
Strap a gizmo watch around your son or daughter’s wrist, and you’ve got a direct link to your child, no matter how far apart the two of you may be. The line of gizmo watches by Korean tech company LG are more than glorified walkie talkies, though — they straddle the line between children’s smartwatch and easy to use mobile phone. They’re sophisticated devices, but they’re so simple that your child will have no trouble using it properly.
LG has two main offerings in the gizmo watch category, the GizmoPal 2 and the Gizmo Gadget, and between the two they have kids from preschool to middle school covered as far as communication and safety are concerned. The question must be asked, though: do kids really need a device like this wrapped around their tiny wrists? The answer, as you’ll soon see, is a resounding yes, for several reasons.
LG Gizmopal price when reviewed: $127.07
A Matter of Safety
It’s a hard topic to discuss, but the unfortunate truth is that kids aren’t always 100% safe. According to Missing Children Europe, an organisation that exists to prevent children from going missing and support and protect the families of those who do, the numbers are staggering. A quarter of a million children are reported missing every year in the European Union; it amounts to one missing child every two minutes.
Yes, there are many things you can do to keep your children safe. Parent sites, medical journals, and even the respected blog The Huffington Post offer tips for both kids and their parents on how to avoid falling prey to abductors, but not enough of them include wearing a device like a gizmo watch to provide an instant communication link between kids and their parents.
Ultimately, unless you have your eyes on your child every waking moment, you can never be 100% sure if he or she is safe. Placing a Gizmo Watch on your child’s wrist can play a big role in minimising any potential danger.
A Look at the LG GizmoPal2
The LG GizmoPal2 is a gizmo watch that even small kids can use without trouble Intended for ages three to six, it’s a simple device that does a few things and does them well. For example, your kids can call you, and you can call them; the call list is limited to just four contacts, but small children shouldn’t need more than that. Plus, if you try to call and your child doesn’t answer, you can force the GizmoPal2 to auto-answer.
GPS is included on the GizmoPal2 as well, which is helpful for locating your child on a map, though there’s no live tracking ability, and setting up geofences; turning on alerts will let you know when your son or daughter has entered or left a predefined area. All of the variables can be set through the device’s corresponding app, which works for both Android and iOS.
Meanwhile, kids will like wearing the GizmoPal2 because wearing it will make them feel grown up and (ideally) cool. What’s more, it will speak the time when prompted, and it can also make some goofy sounds that little ones are sure to enjoy. It comes in pink or blue, and battery life is nine days of standby or two and a half hours of talk time. Even if you check in with your kids regularly, you can safely figure on getting three or four days at least between charges.
As for price, the GizmoPal2 is mostly affordable. It retails for $79.99 USD (about £61), but that’s not where the charges end. You’ll pay another $40 to activate it, then a few dollars per month for the required Verizon service plan — a lot of little charges that can really add up. Oh, and here’s another important thing to consider: LG does not guarantee any functionality unless you’re in the US, Puerto Rico, or the US Virgin Islands, so customers anywhere else in the world are out of luck.
A Look at the GizmoGadget
While the GizmoPal2 is designed for the toddler and kindergarten set, the GizmoGadget is a gizmo watch that’s meant for older kids, maybe seven through the tween years. It offers all of the qualities that the GizmoPal2 has, with some expanded capability and added features that will appeal to older kids.
Like its baby brother, the GizmoGadget can take and make calls to a pre-set list of numbers, but on this model, the number of contacts maxes out at ten instead of four. Parents can also force the device to auto-answer if the wearer isn’t picking up the call. Plus, the GizmoGadget can also send texts to the pre-set list of contacts, though these texts are also pre-programmed; there’s no keyboard or voice recognition ability to create custom messages. There’s also GPS and geofencing, both of which operate similarly to the GizmoPal2.
Full Colour and Customisable
Unlike the GizmoPal2’s unresponsive face, though, the GizmoGadget has a full colour touchscreen display, so it looks and feels more like a real smartwatch. It also has a built-in fitness tracker, which older kids will like and parents will appreciate (since parents can see their child’s activity on the app). Parents can also add items on the device’s to-do list so kids remember chores or appointments, and there’s a school mode so that kids won’t be distracted by their GizmoGadget during history class.
Kids also have a lot more control over the customisation of their GizmoPal. They can set ringtones, notification sounds, and visual themes so that the device truly feels like it’s their own. Also, and this is a little silly, but kids will probably enjoy the GizmoGadget’s voice recorder that can filter sounds and alter them for funny playback.
Battery life on the GizmoGadget is slightly worse than the GizmoPal2: about eight days of standby and two hours of talk time. Colour choices include bright red and navy blue. It retails for $149.99 USD (about £114), which is double the price of LG’s lesser gizmo watch; all the same activation and monthly fees apply. It’s also not available outside of the US and a few of its territories.
Which Gizmo Watch is Right For You?
We’re looking at two gizmo watches with radically different prices: one is nearly twice the cost of the other. The LG gizmo watch that is right for you and your family is dependent on a number of factors, the most important of which is the age of your child. The functionality of each watch is appropriate to a specific age group, as well as to the needs of their parents. Plus, kids who are three or four, for example, may feel overwhelmed by the GizmoGadget, while kids who are 11 or 12 may find the GizmoPal2 to be a bit babyish for their liking.
It’s also a question of your personal budget, though, and how much you want to spend on such a device. However, if you have a child whose age is in the double digits, he or she may really appreciate the fitness tracking feature, which would make the GizmoGadget well worth the added price.
Ultimately, it’s a good idea to involve your child in purchasing an LG gizmo watch. Beyond the fact that he or she will be wearing the device, making sure your child understands why wearing such a device is important can add to its safety factor.
Some Non-LG Alternatives
In addition to LG’s two gizmo watch options, several other companies offer products that are similar in nature and in purpose. Here are three non-LG alternatives that you may want to consider:
This small children’s smartwatch is a lot like the GizmoPal2. It can make and take calls from five contacts, it can track your child’s location on GPS, and there’s a geofencing feature with notifications.
The FiLIP2 also has an emergency button that automatically calls the main contact (probably you) and provides live audio plus live GPS tracking.
The cost is about the same as the GizmoGadget ($149, or £114), the monthly charge is $10, and it works only in the US and Spain for now.
If you’re looking for a more robust gizmo watch for your child, the dokiWatch may be the one for you. It’s currently available for preorder for $199 USD (about £151), which is more expensive than LG’s offerings, but it does offer some distinct advantages.
You can use it for video calling, thanks to its built-in two megapixel camera. There’s also an SOS button, a fitness tracker, a virtual pet game (think 1990s Tamagotchis), a school mode so kids can’t interact with it, and a way for kids to connect with other dokiWatch wearers via BlueTooth.
This is all in addition to the GPS location details and voice calling features. It’s a true Android-based smartwatch for kids, but the best part is its geographical versatility: as long as you have a prepaid 3G SIM card, the dokiWatch will work anywhere in the world.
This is a gizmo watch that veers in the opposite direction from the beefed up dokiWatch in that there’s no watch face or screen and no advanced features. Instead, it can make and receive calls from a dozen contacts, show the child’s location thanks to GPS, and act as walkie talkies among Tinitell wearers.
It’s simple and stripped down, but it’s been successful in its limited run so far. Tinitell retails for $149 USD (about £114), which is a lot when you compare it to other similarly priced watches that do a lot more.
However, Tinitell does have the advantage of being a true worldwide device; simply slip in a prepaid 2G SIM card, and it’s ready to go in any country.
Stay in Touch, Stay Safe
While it can be upsetting to think about the potential dangers our kids face in this world, it’s a reality that all parents need to face. Fortunately, there are things we can do to keep our kids out of harm’s way, and having them wear a gizmo watch is at the top of that list. LG’s offerings will work well for most kids, and while they’re not exactly cheap devices, they’re mostly affordable and highly effective.
Does your child wear a gizmo smart watch? We’d love to hear about your experience! Please drop us a line in the comments.
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