Top critical review
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Good, but not as good as Mummy's phone
on 29 September 2013
This is a frustrating product to review. First let me highlight the positives. It's well built (especially compared to an iPad) and will cope reasonably well with being dropped. Sound is good, image is clear, games are varied, and it's safe to use (ie. stays offline). The "power pack" as far as I can tell is simply 4 well specified rechargeable AA batteries so owners of previous versions may be able to make do (admittedly you will need to swap out batteries I suspect). It has a stylus as well so the young user can learn different ways of interacting with a screen.
I particularly like the fact that it means Mummy's iPhone (and Daddy's for that matter) will not become the most sought after device in the world, as my daughter (aged 3) now has her own tablet to play with. Sadly that's not been the case... iPhone wins. Despite the smaller screen, and my wife and I continuously making sure she is being careful, she wants the iPhone more. From a child's perspective the LeapFrog is better in nearly every way (colourful, bigger screen, nice sounds, talks to you), but there is one fundamental limitation... the apps!
The reality is that the Apple AppStore with countless free and very cheap games (and the equivalent from Google Play) arguably makes the need for the LeapFrog obsolete. The way for this product to succeed is to make it compatible with existing app stores, otherwise I have to admit I can see this product doing similar to Blackberry at the moment. The games and apps it comes with are okay, but the additional ones are just too expensive and compared to the free ones on AppStore, they are just not as good.