Tuesday, February 3, 2009

BabyBerry: The BlackBerry for Your Toddler

The invention and development of the cellular phone has forever changed the way the communicating world operates. From the seemingly prehistoric "car phone" (appearing to be closer in size to a human arm rather than a "hand held" device) to the recently booming BlackBerry, cell phones have become more and more significant in the daily life of the consuming public. As they became more common around the household, children naturally began mimicking their cell phone using parents and siblings. It used to be that a mere plastic replica of a cell phone was a sufficient toy for a young child, but the growing popularity had to push that to the limit. In 2003, the Firefly was introduced to provide parents and their children a simple model of the cell phone designed with parental controls that would keep them connected. The Firefly is designed to hold only a few phone numbers of family members and friends, based on the parents' discretion. However, as the cell phone began to include the ability to surf the Internet, the child counterpart too had to be adjusted, granting the same ability. That's where the BabyBerry comes into play. Currently, children's toy maker LeapFrog is creating a device similar in appearance and partially similar in ability to the BlackBerry. Officially called the Text and Learn kid’s PDA, LeapFrog's version has a full keyboard, five tools for navigation, and designated tools for messaging, baseball, and a tool for managing wireless connectivity. Has the evolution of the plastic cell phone replica really advanced this rapidly to a connection managing BabyBerry? Not so fast. The BabyBerry, although appearing to include all of these abilities, does not actually maintain the technology for this--it cannot connect to the Internet or any cellular network. Essentially it is more of an educational device. The applications it does have, like the calendar application, is designed to help children learn numbers and dates. It also includes applications for phonics and numeric games. So, for about 30 U.S dollars parents will soon be able to provide another means for their children to be more like mommy and daddy. And although the BabyBerry doesn't fully match up to the adult BlackBerry, it is only a matter of time before devices like this will include the full ability to connect to the Internet as well as cellular networks.



1 comment:

  1. It is not unlikely that this new child model of the Blackberry will hit stores and do well in the market considering the drastic decrease in age in which kids are getting cell-a-phones since this new millennium has begun.