The nabi Dreamtab HD8 from Fuhu is a kid-friendly tablet that combines the sophisticated technology of a "grown up" tablet with tons of kid-friendly content and built-in safety features. Out of the box, the Dreamtab comes with a bumper for added protection, a Dream Pen stylus (created by Wacom); power adapter, and USB connector. The tablet features a responsive 8-inch capacitive touchscreen, 2GB of RAM, 16GB of expandable memory, front two megapixel camera, and rear eight megapixel camera with flash. Kids can download new content to the tablet through its Treasure Box app store using nabi Coins, a parent-managed virtual currency created to teach children how to save, earn, and spend money. Or the tablet can also be adapted to a real tablet to add virtually anything you can get from Google Playstore or the Amazon Appstore.
The Dreamtab runs on the Android operating system called Blue Morpho, which run through the Kit Kat operating system and expands to add more than 400 kid-focused programs and features. These include nabi Time Controls, the nabi Utilities Suite, nabi Konnect, the Wings Learning System, nabigator, the Design Pro Studio, and more.
With nabi Time Controls, parents can set limits on daily tablet use, individual app use, as well as rules so kids can earn extra time on the device.
In the nabi Utilities Suite, kids can learn to manage time, calendars, events, and weather.
nabi Konnect, offers kids a safe environment to exchange messages and content through email, instant messaging, and photo-sharing apps.
In the Wings Learning System, kids can test their math, reading, and writing skills with fun and interactive content and activities personalized for each child's skill level and pace. Content covers main learning topics for grades Pre-K-6 to grow with your child.
The nabigator is an iOS and Android app that allows parents to purchase nabi Coins, manage Time Controls, and communicate with their kids straight from their own devices.
And in the Design Pro Studio, kids can draw, animate, and make movies just like the pros at Dreamworks Animation.
What's truly impressive about this tablet are the parental controls that allow parents to allow virtually any program-or not, set time limits on play and specific apps, and give kids a completely safe web environment. Moreover, as the child becomes more mature and able to deal with more sophisticated programs, it can be opened up to do more accordingly.
We were really impressed with the DreamPro Studio suite of apps that lets kids draw and animate and create their own digital works of art. And the included stylus makes that even easier. The controls are intuitive and easy to use, and while our efforts were decidedly mediocre, it's clear that kids who want to invest the time can create some great stuff-and even learn how to draw from Dreamworks artists.
This is a little more expensive than other tablets targeted to kids, but combining the content and sophistication of the hardware, as well as the ability to upgrade and adapt the tablet as the child grows potentially make this an outstanding value for parents and families.
The nabi Dreamtab HD8 is for ages 3 and up.
In some cases, such as the Math Ops program, we felt the rewards could be spaced out a little more to keep the focus more on the drilling of numbers literacy.
The tablet runs on a rechargeable lithium-ion 4500mAh battery. Battery life may vary based on usage and other conditions.
The Dreamtab HD8 weighs about 2 pounds.
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