Friday, 13 December 2013

VTech Innotab 3S - our thoughts

So as most of you know, Chester is a tech loving 5 year old. He just loves his technology! This Christmas the Vtech Innotab 3S is set to be one of the top toys. We have been testing it out over the last few weeks, as Christmas is getting closer and closer I thought I should share our thoughts of it with you....


The Vtech Innotab 3S is a wifi enabled learning tablet, with kidsafe web browsing. It has a 180 degree rotating camera and video recorder and a rechargeable power pack.


For Chester the big attraction for him was the internet access. Although in reality this turned out not to be such a great feature for him. This is because it is kidsafe web browsing. Now as a parent, this appeals to me a lot and I really like the idea that the innotab has got a few pre selected websites, and then if I as a parent want to add anymore for him I can go in through the password protected parent area. A great way of controlling and limiting your children's internet access. However for Chester, a child who has his own tablet and regularly goes onto youtube to watch videos of toy unveilings and video game demos, it was a disappointment. I did add youtube to the innotab, however when you go onto the website it will not let you play the videos. We have added a couple more of his favourite sites, Cartoon network and Moshi Monsters but they are either very slow loading or do not work at all. Perhaps Chester is ahead of his years I am not sure? So if you are buying the Innotab 3S specifically for the internet access then I would rethink your choices.

But lets not dwell on the negative, Chester has found lots of positives and has even asked for an Innotab game for Christmas!

The Innotab has go some inbuilt apps, others you have have to download/purchase from the learning lodge. The apps that are built in have proved to be very popular with Chester. He absolutely loves the My Magic Beanstalk game. Its a game where you have to grow and look after your own beanstalk over time. Kind of like the tamagotchi of our childhood. He is actually a little obsessed with that game, as soon as he comes home from School he has to 'check on his beanstalk'!


There is an e-reader too, that has a built in book (What's That Noise). Chester is at the stage where he is learning his phonics and learning to read so this is another hit with him. The narrator tells the story, the words he is saying are highlighted. Then if you wanted to learn the word again you can touch on it and it will be repeated. Chester and I have been playing a little game with it, where I have been asking him to find the word and he has to touch it on the screen to see if he is correct! Others are available to download too.

There are various other features too, a camera and video camera. Chester loves to use these, he must get his love for taking photos from me haha! There are some painting and drawing games/apps. What Chester loves about these is that their are loads of different ways to get creative, his favourite one is letting a frog jump paint all over the page!


There is one other feature, which we are yet to use and that is the ability to be able to send picture messages to an Iphone or android. I own a windows phone so have missed out on this one! I think that is a fun feature and if Chester knew about it he would love to give it a go!

Chester has found the Innotab 3S really easy to use and navigate, it has kept him entertained for longer than a day which is a big achievement for a 5 year old! I think its safe to say that Chester is a fan of the Innotab and I can see him getting lots of use out of it.

Chester and I discussed how much we would give out of 10, and in the end we both agreed on 8. If the internet was not so slow and worked on the websites we tried to use it on we would of given it a 10.

The Innotab 3S has an RRP of £99 and as I mentioned before is set to be one of the top toys this Christmas, I have even seen it listed on the Dream toys here at Argos. Aside from the one and only problem we have with it, I can totally see why. It is sure to be an instant hit with lots of 4-8 year olds all over the country!

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