Smartwatch for kids purchasing advice: how to choose the right product

  • The most important facts in a nutshell
  • This makes it easy for children to learn the multimedia possibilities of modern technology.
  • Parents can get a better overview of their child’s online activity via an app.
  • Smartwatches for kids give their offspring safety options such as an SOS button and automatic alarm functions.
  • With a GPS tracker, parents always keep an eye on their child’s position.
  • The various models have diverse functions, such as geofencing, a school mode and a whitelist.

Progress in the nursery

Smartphones, tablets and smartwatches have become an integral part of most adults’ everyday lives. Therefore, children inevitably come into contact with these technical achievements of the 21st century. The multimedia offer is always present, whether in one’s own household or outside. In addition, there is the almost unstoppable curiosity of children. But parents should not blindly expose their children to global networking. Instead, they should gently introduce children to the possibilities and dangers. They can do this, for example, by giving them devices specially developed for young, tech-savvy people – in the truest sense of the word, because smartwatches for kids are not just wrist ornaments, but also educational objects.

Toy manufacturers who jumped on the bandwagon of the times were inspired by the current state of technology and developed smartwatches for kids that are a precursor to their own first smartphone. They not only promote your child’s technical independence, but also social-media freedom. In addition, the watches are equipped with various safety functions so that you can always be in contact with your child. The watches are recommended for children aged 4 to 14 years.


  • Permanent communication possible
  • More freedom can be granted thanks to tracking
  • Overview of the child’s social-media activities
  • Child-friendly design
  • Cautious introduction to modern technology


  • Children may feel patronised
  • Constant surveillance breaks the basis of trust

How does a smartwatch for kids work?

A smartwatch for kids hardly differs from a normal smartwatch in the way it works – with one exception: the devices for kids are connected to a so-called parent app on your smartphone. Every manufacturer offers its own app for both Android and iOS, with which parents can control their children’s activities. At any time, you can use the smartphone app to make settings on the watch, restrict the functions or switch the device off completely. The app also informs you as soon as the child presses the SOS button or takes the watch off the wrist. If you are indisposed for the moment, you can specify several trusted persons in the app, who will all be notified in the event of an SOS alarm. The settings and operation of the children’s watch are also possible via a web client.

The devices are available both with and without a touch function and are literally child’s play to operate. Usually, no more than 10 to 18 contact numbers can be stored on it. In addition, the watches offer various functions that on the one hand allow parents to track their child’s steps and on the other hand teach their offspring to use technology and social media responsibly.

Functionality in kids’ smartwatches

All smartwatches for kids have certain basic functions, including the eponymous watch. A phone function, on the other hand, is not included in every model. You should make sure that your smartwatch for kids has at least the following features:

smartwatch for kids gps
Global Positioning System

Smartwatches for kids are equipped with GPS trackers. Tracking is done via satellite so that parents can always see their child’s location via the app. In the settings, certain time intervals can be set in which the parents are notified of the location via GPS on their smartphone. The positioning is usually accurate between 20 and 70 metres, but varies depending on the quality of the GPS signal.

smartwatch for kids geofencing

“Fencing” means “fencing in”. Geofencing, both an artificial word and a principle, is the geographically conceived fencing of an object or a person. With the help of this function, parents define a safety zone that the child is not allowed to leave. If the child violates the limits, the parents receive a notification. Geofencing works with GPS and is therefore only available on smartwatches with GPS function.

smartwatch for kids sos
SOS button

In an emergency, the child can press the SOS button to inform their parents as soon as possible that something is wrong. Some models will then contact up to three preset numbers. To prevent the child from accidentally pressing the SOS button, it must be held down for several seconds.

smartwatch for kids microphone

Smartwatches for kids have a microphone that children can use to make phone calls and record voice messages. However, not every model is capable of sending voice messages. Be careful with the microphone: some models offer you the option of listening to the child’s surroundings via it. This function is not legal in Germany, however, as it can be used to listen in on bystanders.

Section 90 of the TKG

When listening to the surrounding sounds, this is also called “voice monitoring”. Listening in, however, quickly tempts people to eavesdrop: There have already been incidents of parents spying on their children’s teachers during class time. In 2017, the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) therefore banned devices with a listening function for data protection reasons. Section 90 of the Telecommunications Act (TKG) also covers watches with a baby monitor function.

Playful gimmicks

Many functions make the devices additionally attractive for children: Some watches have integrated games, a music player or a camera. The option to send and receive text messages not only gives you the opportunity to communicate with your child, but also introduces your protégé to the technology of common smartphones. School mode allows you to mute your child’s smartwatch during school hours: For example, text messages are blocked in school mode and only incoming calls from predefined numbers are allowed. Whether functions such as a pedometer, stopwatch, weather display, torch, calendar and alarm clock are necessary for your child is up to you as a parent to decide. On the other hand, a calorie consumption display and a health parameter app for 4- to 14-year-olds are rather superfluous.

Some watch models have an alarm function that informs you as soon as the child takes the watch off the wrist or the child’s movement speed increases drastically. In addition, some models give you the option of creating a whitelist. This allows you to determine which contacts your child is allowed to call or which incoming calls are trustworthy.

What should be considered when buying a smartwatch for kids?

To be able to use a smartwatch for kids, you need a SIM card. So you either have to sign a mobile phone contract or buy a prepaid card. Memory and battery should be adapted to the use. Also make sure that the watch is the right size for your child’s wrist and not too heavy. Since children spend a lot of time outdoors, a splash-proof or even waterproof model is recommended. When it comes to the range of functions, you as a parent must decide for yourself which options you want to entrust to your child and to what extent monitoring on your part is necessary.

smartwatch for kids sim card

SIM card

A SIM card is required to use the telephone and Internet functions of a smartwatch for kids. This must have the right fit, usually micro-SIM, and be purchased either as a prepaid model or with a contract. A data volume of a few hundred megabytes per month is sufficient for a smartwatch for kids. Some mobile phone providers offer special children’s rates at special prices. Make sure that the PIN lock of the device is deactivated before inserting the SIM card, otherwise it will not be recognised.

smartwatch for kids memory


Memory capacity varies greatly between different models. Inexpensive devices with basic functions have a few megabytes, usually a few hundred, rarely less than a hundred. However, there are also smartwatches for kids with about 2 gigabytes, in some exceptions even 4 to 8 gigabytes. Some models have a microSD card slot. So if necessary, the internal memory of the watch can be expanded.

smartwatch for kids battery


The battery of a smartwatch for kids should be very long-lasting. In standby mode, most watches last several days; 2 to 7 days are also common thanks to the power-saving mode. In continuous operation, however, a smartwatch for kids is hardly any different from full-fledged devices for adults: the battery will have reached its limit after several hours. To make children aware of a low battery level, many models indicate this with a notification.

smartwatch for kids size and weight

Size and weight

The weight of a smartwatch for kids should not be too high and should be adapted to the age of the child. A lighter watch is recommended for a 4-year-old than for a 14-year-old. Many children’s watches weigh very little, around 50 grams. However, some models weigh more than 100 grams. The size of a smartwatch for kids refers to the diagonal of the display. Most models are smaller than 2 centimetres; on average, 1.2 to 1.5 inches are common.

smartwatch for kids waterproof

Water resistance

When children play, things often get wild and boisterous. Therefore, a robust and waterproof smartwatch for kids is recommended. You can tell how dustproof and waterproof a smartwatch for kids is by the protection class, which is indicated by the letters “IP” followed by two digits. The IP67 (protection against temporary submersion) and IP68 (protection against permanent submersion) protection classes are recommended.

smartwatch for kids certificate

Safety precautions

Ideally, look for test seals and certificates. In addition, you should always keep in mind the notice of the Federal Network Agency and pay attention to whether the device has a listening function. Compare the terms of use and data protection statements of the products to find out about any grey areas or prohibited functions. Sometimes models are advertised specifically with points such as “no bugging function”.

Caution, security gap!

Products from no-name manufacturers are not recommended because they often pose a security risk. With such models, there is a high probability that data will be collected and passed on to unauthorised persons. For example, unauthorised persons can pretend to be a parent and contact your child. So always go for products from brand-name manufacturers, as these are characterised by high security standards.

How does a smartwatch for kids differ from a normal smartwatch?

In contrast to a normal smartwatch for adults, smartwatches for kids have a reduced range of functions. They are limited to the essentials and serve primarily to ensure the child’s safety. The products are colourful and designed with children in mind: The display is clear and the buttons are large as well as easy to reach. The watch case and wristband are made of resistant materials such as silicone or plastic so that they do not get scratched or broken. Due to the use of comparatively inexpensive material and the limited functionality, smartwatches for kids are also significantly lower in price.

Which smartwatch for kids is suitable for children under the age of 4?

There are no smartwatches for kids under the age of 4. However, there are learning watches that take a step in this direction: Watches for toddlers usually include learning games and various sounds and melodies for entertainment. Menu navigation is done via buttons on the sides of the case.

Being smart for more confidence

If you decide to buy a smartwatch, you should buy it together with your child and also set it up. Let your offspring participate and make the handling of the device more transparent. Your child will be grateful to you in later years. In addition, you create a common basis of trust in this way. Seamless surveillance is harmful to the relationship between parents and child. The freedom you give your offspring should be accompanied by the corresponding trust. Last but not least, it is your responsibility to inform yourself in advance about the terms of use and data protection declarations so that you do not give your child a data-collecting surveillance device. The following tips will make using a smartwatch for kids as comfortable as possible for you and your child:

  • Tell your child which functions you will be using.
  • Allow your child some freedom without monitoring him or her.
  • Find out about the terms of use of the smartwatch for kids.