As the math development expert on LeapFrog’s Learning Team, Jody works on products across all…
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When LeapFrog launched in 1999 using its first LeapPad, the idea was simple – founder Mike Wood had wished to create ways to help his child figure out how to read. Now, the brand hasn’t only updated the LeapPad many times to a tablet that’s almost unrecognisable from its start, but added products like the Tag and LeapReader reading systems and cuddly learning toy MY MATE Scout.
Described as “an ideal first tablet for kids” by LeapFrog, the LeapPad 3 is in a crowded market, filled with rivals including the VTech InnoTab Max (£99.99), and InnoTab3 (£74.99), along with the more costly – but higher spec – Kindle Fire HD Kids (£109.99).
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It’s a completely different experience from by using a tablet as an iPad, however the price reflects that. At £89.99, that is a tablet you don’t mind your children getting their practical.
MFM mum Magda Ibrahim
Is it simple to create the LeapFrog LeapPad 3?
Yes, it’s simple to set up though it did require a few information regarding my child, such as for example name, date of birth, etc, which some parents may not wish to share.
The paper instructions with the LeapPad3 are very minimal you need to include one diagram of the tablet’s various buttons and slots, and some paragraphs on settings.
However, once fired up and create – which takes about 20 minutes – using the LeapPad3 is rather self-explanatory.
How does the LeapPad 3 work?
It’s very easy – after turning on using a tiny silver button privately, the LeapPad 3 involves life with a user screen.
Once you opt for the user, that can be personalised, the house screen arises with a selection of programs and games. Using the attached stylus your son or daughter can select what they would like to play with – and you will buy extra programs or cartridges from a selection of hundreds.
It’s quite intuitive using arrows, ticks and crosses to go forwards, select or not. Gleam home button on leading of the tablet this means your child will get back to the house page anytime.
Could it be as responsive as an iPad or adult tablet?
No. Although you need to use your finger to play games, it doesn’t have the fluidity of an iPad or adult tablet.
I even found it somewhat glitchy using the stylus as occasionally game features wouldn’t continue with out a few taps.
Reveal about the peer-to-peer feature, how does it work, what do you consider of it?
With the peer-to-peer feature your son or daughter can play games or ‘chat’ with another child who includes a wifi-supported LeapPad device nevertheless they should be in the same room.
Among the pre-loaded apps, Pet Chat allows kids to utilize the feature by by using a group of ready-to-go phrases like ‘I’m great!’ or ‘See you later, alligator’, in addition to emoticons.
YOUR PET Pad Party software also allows children to play with each other’s pets using the function.
Other games with this feature include Arturo’s Bug Adventures, although I struggled to find other available software with the peer-to-peer option.
For all of us, it wasn’t that great an attribute as none of my son’s friends have a LeapPad3 and his cousin comes with an older version, which doesn’t have the choice.
What do you consider of the screen size?
The LeapPad3 includes a 5in screen which means 11cm width by 6.5cm height. It can seem to be quite small and I particularly noticed when my son was playing on a Jake the Pirates game how teeny the characters looked. Considering just how much I loved my Nintendo Game Boy as a kid using its 2.6in diagonal screen, I don’t think my son cared.
What‘s the resolution like?
The resolution is 480×272 pixels which is pretty low resolution plus some of the graphics can on occasion appear a lttle bit pixelated.
The actual size of the complete LeapPad3 is 19cm x 13cm x 2.5cm. Its curved edges and the thoughtful keeping the house button, directional movement button and the on/off switch and volume meant it had been possible for my son to take care of the tablet.
What’s the audio tracks like?
I found it simple to hear the accompanying audio tracks which is mounted on each portion of an iphone app or game and there’s a helpful volume control button on underneath right hand side of the LeapPad 3.
Could it be heavy for little hands?
No, the weight of the LeapPad3 is 385 g which is just about exactly like a Kindle HD Fire Kids tablet, which weighs 360g using its kid-proof case.
It is chunky so that it certainly doesn’t feel light – but my three-year-old was correctly comfortable holding it.
What age would you recommend it for?
Although LeapFrog recommends the LeapPad for a long time three to nine, the truth is that it’s probably better suitable for the younger end of this scale.
My son, who’s three, absolutely loves it, but his cousin – who has just turned seven and had a mature model LeapPad a couple of years ago – has all but grown out of using it.
Could it be easy and safe to hook up to the internet?
Yes, among the first prompts on setup was to hook up to wifi and it worked right away.
It linked using our home access code in order far as I possibly could tell, it had been as safe as using some of our other devices.
The limited internet capability was both a negative and positive. I felt totally happy letting my son see the LeapSearch application since it is filled with pre-screened pictures and videos befitting children such as for example craft tutorials, animal videos and music.
However, there’s no chance to get online for an instant Google browse yourself, even in parent safe mode.
What exactly are the included software like?
Well, let’s put it in this manner, you will certainly have to buy extra software and games. It includes several software pre-loaded but this consists of basic features for instance a calendar, clock, notepad and calculator.
The more exciting software are a very good music player, photography editor, art studio, voice memo, very good music player, and video camera.
For my son, the very best pre-loaded application was unquestionably your pet Pad Party – that allows children to create their own cute monkey, dog, cat, penguin, unicorn or other pet, give it a name, colour and play a number of games with their new pal.
What do you consider about different types of software?
The number of software available is enormous and prices begin from around £2 with age brackets from three up to 12, so there’s certainly a lot of choice.
If anything, I came across trying to select quite overwhelming but LeapFrog has helpfully created bundles and categories such as for example learning games, eBooks, foreign languages and more to consider easier.
What’s the battery real life?
The battery is meant to last six hours and it will be met the claim. It lasted well and we only had a need to charge it once throughout a long weekend in Madrid, despite my son using it for the airport, the flight and through the break.
Older LeapPads needed four AA batteries however the LeapPad 3 includes a built-in lithium ion battery, plus a USB cable and charger that i found convenient.
How long does it try recharge?
The LeapPad doesn’t provide a percentage charge figure as an iPad or smartphone does, so it’s tricky to state precisely how long it requires but I found it had been fully charged in a hour of plugging it in.
Does it include enough storage space?
The LeapPad 3 has 4GB of space so it’s not huge but much like other tablets just like the VTech InnoTab Max.
Reveal about the camera and video recorder
There’s a 2 MP camera at the front end and back of the camera, in addition to the tablet has 480 pixel video recording. It’s not the very best quality ever but satisfactory for kids to use for fun snaps and videos.
Is it durable?
Definitely. LeapFrog says it really is “kid-tough and thoroughly drop-tested” and I could attest to this as my son dropped it on a difficult floor once or twice! The casing is a thick, robust plastic and the screen is shatter-safe.
May be the LeapPad 3 more of an educational tool or could it be an all-round entertainment tool?
So far as I was concerned, the LeapPad3 was an excellent all-round entertainment tool which includes some educational value.
I believe it’s stretching it a lttle bit to labour the educational factor too much as though my main aim was education then I’m uncertain my first port of call would necessarily be considered a kids’ tablet.
However, the LeapPad 3 and its own parent company LeapFrog has won a barrage of awards because of its educational value.
There are a huge selection of reading, writing and maths games available in fact it is a good thought that your son or daughter is learning alongside being entertained. I’d like to test the language programs particularly as my son begins