Best apps for your child's phone

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Essential child-friendly apps for Monqi and other devices…
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Best apps for your child's phone

5 of the best child-friendly apps


Monqi is a great first smartphone for kids, new and exclusively available from Carphone Warehouse.

One of the great things about it is the control you have over the apps that your child can access. The preloaded Jungle Store is Monqi’s own app store, and it’s got loads of specially approved child-friendly apps. You can also add other apps from Google Play if you think they’re appropriate.

If your kid is lucky enough to be the proud owner of a new Monqi phone, no doubt they’ll be wanting to add every app under the sun - immediately, right now and straight away. That’s not how life should work, so tell them to take it easy - because you’ll be controlling the apps, and adding them carefully, one at a time. To help you get started, here are five that we think are among the very best (also all available on iOS).

YouTube Kids

(Free on Android and iOS)

Kids go crazy for YouTube, but not all its content is suitable. Thankfully, Google has come up with YouTube Kids – a more child-friendly version that works hard to filter out the inappropriate stuff. Parental controls include the ability to set time limits and tailor the video access.

Maily

(Free on Android and iOS)

Maily is a great way of introducing your kids to the world of email. It lets them connect to family and friends in a fun, easy and totally secure way. They can send written messages or create digital drawings, and if they want to add more contacts it’s all done under strict parental supervision.

Namoo

(£2.69 on Android, £3.99 on iOS)

Namoo is a gorgeous looking app that encourages children to explore the life of plants with interactive 3D simulations and interesting explanations. They can experiment with underground root systems, play with parts of plant cells, and discover how leaves make food. And they won’t realise you’ve tricked them into enjoying an educational app until it’s way too late and they’ve actually learned something. Result.

Namoo costs £2.69 from Google Play, but you can try out Namoo Lite for free before you decide to invest in the full game.

Piano Tiles 2

(Free on Android and iOS)

When Piano Tiles is being played on a phone, the most common sound coming from it is relaxing music – a real rarity in the world of kids’ games. The premise is a simple one – you're the pianist, and you hit the piano keys as they appear on-screen to play the song. It’s a good way of keeping young attention spans keen and reflexes sharp, and if it interests your child in learning the real thing, all the better.

Despicable Me: Minion Rush

(Free on Android and iOS)

Last but not least, you should probably try and keep your kid sweet with at least one game that’s just for fun.

Endless running games are massive on mobile, because they’re so easy to pick up and play. Typically, you’ll be swiping your phone screen to control your runner as they duck, jump and dodge all manner of obstacles. The best endless running game for kids? Surely Despicable Me: Minion Rush.

It features all the characters from the Despicable Me movies (including El Macho and fluffy unicorn bonus levels), the graphics are amazing and insanely colourful, and the gameplay is challenging enough to keep kids and adults alike entertained.

If there’s a Monqi phone in your family, we’d love to hear how you’re getting on with The Jungle Store and app control. Do you have any other child-friendly apps you’d like to recommend? Share your comments below.

What are your thoughts? Join the conversation here…

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