Carphone Warehouse's best smartphones for kids
If you’re thinking of buying a first phone for your child, we’ve come up with five that we think are well worth considering.
Before we start though, let’s just make one thing clear - none of our choices are top-of-the-range premium handsets. We think it makes more sense to get something a little more modest as someone’s first phone. If the young owner can take care of it and treat it with respect, you can reward them with something even better in a year or two.
The Nokia 1 is a super-budget phone, and the cheapest on this list. Despite its rock bottom price it’s still a capable Android smartphone, and it would make a great first phone for a child. It’s got a chunky plastic design that feels really durable, and the back can be replaced - there are currently a few fun and funky patterns available.
There’s a 5MP main camera with a LED flash on the rear, and a 2MP selfie snapper on the front. Both take decent quality photographs.
The Nokia 1’s operating system is Android Oreo (Go edition). This is a new version of Android designed for budget smartphones with less storage and processing power. Google’s most popular apps (including Gmail, Google Maps and YouTube) are all present and correct, but they’ve been redesigned and trimmed down. This makes the phone perform brilliantly, without any lag or loss of performance.
You can buy the Nokia 1 from Carhpone Warehouse.
Monqi may just be the perfect first phone for your child. Why? Well, because it’s a smartphone specifically designed for kids, that parents can control. Its unique operating system lets you monitor everything your child does through a parental app. You can control which apps they download, who they add as contacts, and even decide when the phone is active – if you want to lock it down during homework, yes, you have that power.
The phone itself isn’t childish in any way. It looks and feels like a proper ‘grown up’ device, with a 5-inch HD display, 13MP camera with a LED flash, and 32GB of internal storage.
Monqi has been awarded 'Mumsnet Rated'. This means it’s been fully tested by a panel of real parents and children, who then recommended it to other mums.
Essential reading: Monqi: The first smartphone for your kids
You can buy the Monqi ‘smartphone for kids’ from Carphone Warehouse.
Samsung Galaxy J3 (2017)
Some slightly older phone models represent great value. Just because they haven’t got the current year in brackets after their name, the cost can drop right down.
The Samsung Galaxy J3 (2017) is a great example of this, with loads of impressive features for a very reasonable price. For starters, it looks incredibly stylish, with a minimalist design that really makes it standout from others in this low price category. It’s tough and durable too, with 2.5D glass shielding its 5-inch HD display. The 13MP main camera is good in low light, and the front-facing 5MP camera has a LED flash for bright and accurate selfies. There's also space for a microSD card of up to 256GB, if you need extra storage on top of the inbuilt 16GB.
You can buy the Samsung Galaxy J3 (2017) from Carphone Warehouse.
The Moto C is packed with all the essentials. It might not have all the bells and whistles of the top-end smartphones, but its great value makes it a perfect first phone for kids.
The 5-inch display is bright and vivid, and the textured rear cover has a nice grip to it. There’s a 5MP main camera that can also film video in HD resolution, and the front-facing 2MP selfie camera has a flash. So selfies will always come out bright and clear.
You can buy the Moto C from Carphone Warehouse.
Huawei P8 lite (2017)
The Huawei P8 Lite has the largest screen on this list - a 5.2-inch display with Full HD resolution. It also comes with a quick-launching 12MP camera, so your child can easily capture great photographs with a quick sweep up from the bottom of the screen.
There’s also a big battery under the hood. At a whopping 3,000mAh, it’ll keep the P8 Lite powered up all day, right up to bedtime.
You can buy the Huawei P8 Lite (2017) from Carphone Warehouse.
If you need a little more information on the kind of phone that might suit your child, check out this article: A great phone for every kind of child.
Got any questions? Drop us a comment below and we’ll do our best to give you an answer.