When parents talk about buying a tablet computer for their children there is always two options; an adult tablet or a tablet for the under 9's. There is though another way and this way comes from Oregon Scientific called the MEEP! Tablet. This tablet is complete independence for your child, you never need to touch it, because you can control it remotely from anywhere in the world!
We are not going to tell your children that though. They don't need to know that you can add and remove controls on their tablet at the touch of a button ready for when they next use it, nor do they need to know that if you have to; you actually can snoop in on their conversations and friends lists. Maybe this is what makes the Meep! Tablet so appealing to parents.
A Quick Spec Rundown
When you think of the specification for the Meep! then you would compare it to some of the budget to mid-range tablet computers already on the market. The tablet comes with a reasonable specification including:
- 1Ghz cortex A8 Processor
- 512MB RAM & 4GB Storage & A SD card slot
- HDMI Output - should you want to view the tablet screen on a TV
- 7-inch screen (800x480)
- Built-in camera
I have also reviewed other children's tablets including the VTech InnoTab2 and the LeapFrog LeapPad2 and in comparison these are already falling behind when compared to the device from Oregon Scientific (pictured left) on just the basic features for any tablet computer.
The jewel in the Meep! crown though is the fact that unlike most of the other children specific tablets, the wireless networking means that updating the software or viewing the progress of your child does not need plugging it into a PC at home.
This is one of the big factors that sets the Meep! Tablet aside from other devices that I have researched recently. We have already mentioned how you need to connect the VTech InnoPad2 and the LeapFrog LeapPad2 devices to a computer by tethering them with a USB cable; this device does not need to do that though because unlike these other tablets it has the leisure of the Wi-Fi adapter built in.
This means that once you have set up your child's new Meep! Tablet then to get access to it all you need to do is log in to the company's website and you then have secure web access. If you do buy one of these as a Christmas (or other celebration) gift then I would suggest setting up the "Boss Account" first. This will allow you to start setting up the tablet's family friendly and security features as well as set up an account for your child; giving you control over much of what they can and can not do on their new computer.
Setting up the Meep! Boss Account and child accounts means that as a parent, you can control access to the dedicated Meep! Store, Communicator chat room and even the built-in YouTube player. You can also choose to control what your child can (and can not) install from the Meep! Store as well as give credits for them to use.
If you do not know your child is getting a Meep! Tablet from someone this Christmas, or you do not get a chance to set up parental controls then there is a very safe offline default to start things off. This will let your child play with the pre-installed features but prevents them from going on the Internet or downloading from the Meep! Store until you have set-up your accounts. This comes with a range of games, apps, an e-book reader and a video player; so there is plenty to entertain on Christmas Day until the redundant turkey is in the refrigerator and the children are in bed.
The Meep! Store
Your child is going to want to explore the Meep! Store and this is an animated interactive store front. It allows for tight security if you need it and you can set a number of levels of permission; controlling free and paid apps separately. These are split into free, paid with Meep! Coins and paid with cash (from Google Play Store).
The Meep! Store does take elements of the Google Play Store because this tablet is built on the Android 4.0 OS; offering categories such as Movies, Music, Apps, Games and E-books. This means that the tablet is much as about education and play as you want to let it from your MeepTablet.com account.
As part of the set up process you need to verify that as the "Boss Account" holder you are over 18 Years Old. This is done by using credit card authorisation. If you are going to give access to the Meep! Store then you must also sign up for a Google Play account; some of the content is promoted and filtered from the Google Play Store and promoted under the Meep! brand.
If you are going to allow your child to make purchases through the device then you can add Meep! Coins to the account by purchasing them on your "Boss Account" and transferring them to your child. This is all done on any computer and you do not need any physical access to the tablet device itself.
Great Tablet with Tight Control
If you are buying a children's tablet this Christmas then you are going to want something that is fun to play with as well as safe to use. Kids will forget that you have complete control over what they do with the Oregon Scientific Meep! Tablet , they won't need to give you the tablet to tether it to your computer and upload new content.
For parents you have complete control over the tablet, even down to the chat software and pre-approving which friends they can talk to on their built-in communicator software. You can even get updates on their learning progress and change the difficulty of educational apps as they play.
Of the tablets I have reviewed I would suggest this one over the others; it even comes with a mains charger and you can get a huge number of accessories to compliment the device.
Do You have a Oregon Scientific Meep! Tablet? Are you going to Buy Something Else? Tell us Below!