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on 23 August 2012
For someone who has never purchased a LeapPad before i truly believe it is a great product, especially for those kids who are interested in technology, like my 4 year old son who nevers gives my phone back. I brought the new LeapPad 2 from a local shop, as it was sold out from amazon, for my son as a birthday present. As he just turned four and would be starting reception i thought this would make a nice present for him to play with and learn something at the same time.

The LeapPad 2 itself comes in a box which you have to rip open as its glued down all sides, not so much of a big deal really, but it would have been nice to have been able to set it up with apps and repack it as a present. Upon opening it there is the LeapPad itself a small USB wire to conenct to the computer and some leaflet and that pretty much was it. Batteries are required to run it or for just under a tenner you can get a adapter or even better the much sought after recharger pack which inc specially made batteries with charger at £15 from amazon, but they are sold out and cost double the price direct from Leapfrog, if you are going to buy this product it makes sense to purchase the recharger pack too ! The product literally took me 5 minutes to set up, im not kidding, just make sure you have setup a profile on the pad for the child first before connecting to the computer. To get setup simply visit the leap pad website mentioned on the leaflet and download the software and plug in the pad when instructed and fill in some personal details and then let the update do the rest. It really was that simple, which i was quite surprised about. You also fill in your email details and can access reports to see progress and how the child has been doing which is a really nice touch.

The product when you hold it feels like its of good quality, sturdy and has some weight to it as you expect. Its got a stylus already attatched to it with a string in the same colour (green in this case) and has a camera at the back and front which is a real nice feature. The front is more of a matt green finish and the back is plain white but with a shiny finish with dots embedded into the plastic. The buttons are all on the front, powere on/off is the same button at the top left and a volume up and down button each on the right, the d pad at the bottom (the middle circle part of the d pad is not a button)and there is a home key at the bottome too. The microphone is on the left hand side and next to this is also where you can plug in the adapter too (purchased seperatley). The headphones socket i believe is at the top (sorry cant remember) you can purchase these seperatley but i didnt bother with them right now. The screen is nice and bright and the touch sensitivty is good but definitley not as responsive as my Galaxy S3 for example, i noticed my son had to press quite firmly for it to respond and i feel this is partly due to the fact that he was used to the sensitivty of my S3 that he expected it to pick up very light touches but he is used to it now and does not experience this problem anymore. It has a tilt function which is fun and is used to move stuff around with games and apps, this seems responsive as expected. You will find most apps require you to hold the pad landscape, which he manages to do with one hand while holding the stylus in the other. Oh and you can also blow into the microphone when neccessary and this works but be aware that you need to blow into the mic which is not at the screen, but depending on how you are holding the pad, this tends to be on top if held landscape. Overall the build looks really smart and made for kids, it doesnt seem cheap and i am very happy with how it looks.

Apps wise this is what made me purchase this instead of the Innotab2 which again similar as in what it has to offer but LeapPad 2 wins hands down with the amount of software available for it. This is compatible with all leap pad/explorer/leapster games which is great for people who have previous software, just make sure you doucble check it says leappad compatible and you should be good to go. On the LeapPad appstore the games are full price, you can get them much cheaper online for example i brought Toy Story 3 for 12.97 when RRP is 20.00. You also find offers on instore like buy one get one 1/2 price as well now and then, does deserve to shop around. The actual content on the pad itself is enough to entertain for a while but you only get to choose one free app from a selected few and then there is a creatvitiy app and pet app to name a few, these apps are rally good and if you google free apps for LeapPad you can get a couple for free ! The apps on the store are growing all the time, they vary in price from a few pounds to £20. There are different types from ultra e books to songs and videos. It would have been nice to have the ability to add your own videos and music (mp3 should be added in the near future from what i remember on the leappad forums). My son found the pet app the best as he really enjoyed the idea of looking after a pet, you end up washing him, feeding him and learning to write letters with him. The child earns stars which can be rewarded with ingame items when connected to the LeapPad.

Sorry if im boring you with so much details, i dont noramlly write reviews but i thought that this product deserved it. Overall he is still very happy with the product and enjoys playing with it which is a good sign, i will update the review if there is anythign else i can think of adding later on.

Thanks for reading !

*** UPDATE *** 24/08/12 Last night i noticed a update for the pad which now means that you can add your own mp3 files to the pad, it does cost £3.50 to do so but its a one off cost so i think its worth it, would have been better if it was free tho !

*** UPDATE *** 30/08/12 Just a heads up really about the recharger pack i ordered from Amazon, they are currently advertising a 3-5 week wait and its taken exactly three weeks before dispatch, thought i would give you guys idea on timescale based on my order. Here is the link but you will need to go to buying options to select Amazon for 14.99 at time of writing LeapFrog LeapPad Recharger Pack

Also some helpful information i have found out, the pad is left handed friendly. By that you can choose to move the stylus attatchment from the right to the bottom so it works well if your child is left handed, also for some apps i have noticed that it offers you the option to select left handed and then flips the screen so the writing is on the left for example. Thought that was a really nice feature for those who need it.

Another app that my son did not use as much til now is a creative story maker, this is a free app and is really funny actually. You get to create a story and use your own voice and faces on preset characters, there is alot of options and it does seem a little complex but with some help my four year old son was soon able to create some really good stories on his own, He was very proud when he was showing them to me of what he had done, all in all he is still very happy with the pad and he is not bored of it yet which was something i was worried about initally.

***UPDATE*** 11/09/12 Ok so its been a month since i purchased the pad now, few things to point out that may be of interest. The price of the recharger pack has gone up to 24.99, i was initally surprised at 14.99 price mark earlier especially if the charger itself is retailing at 10.00, another accessory that is a must buy is the Leappad 2 gel skin for 2.00, yes you read that right, well currently it is unless they increase that up as well. But you cant go wrong with this especially at this priceLeapFrog LeapPad Explorer Tablet Gel Skin (Green)

***UPDATE*** 24/10/12 Thanks for all the comments and helpful votes. Jus wanted to add that when purchasing this product please also purchase a protective screen sticker and also if you can (because you will) add a replacement stylus as you only get one and with kids being kids they either chew or break it especially if there is more than one child sharing ! Also the official leappad recharge kit is proving very worthwhile as it lasts a long time without charge. It lights up the on button to a yellow and then when charged the colour goes away. I have since also increased the age setting to make it more challenging and it feels like the software is brand new again, as for example there are new shapes and sounds that make it feel different and avoids the repititiveness of the software. All in all still chuffed and the price is coming down to just under £70 which is great, hopefully even less as xmas is around the corner ! These will be in demand as they were hard to get hold of when first released, also sorry for any spelling mistakes have done all this via my mobile.

***UPDATE*** 19/11/12 Something i had to mention that i encountered today, i noticed that the touch screen was not working at all today and i tried all i could and it definitley was not damaged or broken. I googled for ages til i came across a feature with the Leappad software on my laptop that i had pre installed at the start, there is a feature from settings that you can select repair and it fixes any issues without deleting any personal data or if need be you can opt for a full reinstall which does delete data if you ever needed to. This took a while, 10m approx, and now its working absolutley fine. So if in doubt if you have any issues with it not functioning like normal then please give this a go as it worked for me, i was about to call up Leapfrog about it and am relieved to find this function to say the least as i was having a little panic attack thinking my son had broken it.

A massive thanks again for comments and all the positive likes that you have all given, if you do have any questions then please let me know in the comments and i will get back to you.
Many Thanks
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on 15 March 2013
Bought this for my 2 year old son as he is always trying to use my ipad. Great range of learning apps, games and e-books to keep him entertained and to introduce learning. It's recommended for ages 3 and up but he manages fine and I can see him using this for a couple of years to come so despite being a relatively expensive 'toy' I can see it offering good value for money in the long run.
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on 23 October 2013
If your child is age 3-5 then I would highly recommend this toy. The educational games are brilliant, whether its for maths, english, spelling, creativity and geography. However this toy has one fatal floor. It does not grow with them. The games available are for an age maximum of 7. So my daughter has spent £100 pounds on the toy and more on the games but now at age 7 she has outgrown it because leapfrog only do educational games for KS1 and below. Which is a shame because they could continue to do much more.
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on 25 September 2012
Great bit of kit. My 3 (nearly 4) year old loves the leapPad2 and it was great on a recent holiday with a long flight. I was quite amazed at how quickly he got to grips with the functions and I have to say that I am impressed with the educational aspect of the LeapPad although I wouldn't want him to have unrestricted LeapPad time - we use it as an occassional toy and he seems happy with that.

He loves the fact that he has a grown up looking bit of kit to look after. The games that came with the Pad and a couple of extras that I downloaded do all have a learning element and you can select different learning levels so that the pad "grows" with your child. It has been fun to watch him learn how to use the camara and drawing tools to include us in some of the stories and games. Setting it all up is very simple, took me 20mins or so on the PC, and very easy to download extra games from the LeapPad online shop(and easy to get carried away). My son seems more than happy with the five or so games / functions that come with the Pad, a couple of freebies I found on line and a couple of extras (Thomas and Cars).

A great advantage of the LeapPad2 (and the reason that I went for the new model rather than the discounted LeapPad1)is that you can buy a mains cable with rechargable batteries that just live in the pad. So, to recharge you just plug it in and you can still play while it charges and there is no need to fiddle around taking batteries in and out. Would be nice if the cable came with the pad, but it is an extra....

All in, great fun, you can just about justify it as educational, but it is expensive, particularly once you add in all of the extras, certainly not an essential but if you are after a treat to keep little minds and fingers occupied then this may just fit the bill.
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on 9 September 2013
Oh my word, a relative asked to receive this for their child as a gift and I thought, just another game. But to my surprise all the applications are educational, interactive with games, which stimulate learning senses, reading, writing, counting, just fabulous.
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VINE VOICEon 26 September 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The Leapfrog Leappad2 is the newest incarnation of the popular leapfrog system of interactive toys for the little `uns. It is the top of the range model, retailing at just under £90.00.

The unit is based on a tablet computer, the screen is touch screen and is modelled in an attractive froggy green. There is a stylus which comes attached to prevent little fingers losing the stylus. Nice touch.

There are apps available to download from the website which are accessed via a USB cable. This is a classy did of kit, it feels very strong and durable able to withstand bumps and tumbles from little hands.

Now for the quibbles. And there are some. It took me ages to get the darned thing out if the box, I had no scissors to hand and was getting really narked until I had to just rip the cardboard packaging, what if I have to return it? Little `uns are not supposed to run or play with scissors so I have no idea how they are supposed to manage.

Second quibble, and frankly ridiculous, is that the £90 leap pad dies NOT comes with batteries. Come on leap frog don't be so cheap. I had to pootle out to the shops and buy batteries. Now imagine if you had bought this for a little un at Christmas. No shops... boot-faced hellion. Really felt Leapfrog were going cheap on that one.

Another quibble is the length of the USB cord, it is tiny, hardly stretches at all. I had to use another one I had hanging around to get the darn thing to stretch. Plus downloading the apps took ages. They were crazy expensive, some costing over £7. That's a lot if you had forked out the cost of the leap pad plus the kids would probably want all of them.

So overall? Not bad but there are quibbles which brought down the score for the leap pad.
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on 29 December 2013
Batteries run down quickly, so purchase re-chargables along with it. My son loves this product, especially the cyber pet app, but the additional apps are expensive so won't be buying a lot in one go. There are bundles you can buy, so I might try to buy a couple of them. I like the fact you can add your own MP3s to it and my little one has been taking lots of selfies using the camera function. It required a bit of setting up by me before I gave it to him but it only took an hour or so. Glad I bought it but it could be improved by more efficient battery usage and cheaper apps.
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on 28 November 2015
As a first tablet / computer for a child, it is decent. It is easy to use and the range of games are good for keeping children (mine were 3/4 & 5/6) entertained for long periods, particularly on long car journeys.

The major drawback is that you can end up spending a small fortune on games (although 1 purchase can be uploaded to 3 devices) as there aren't (m)any free games for the children to download.

I'm not sure if it is a common fault but one of the two devices stopped working after about 8 months. The touch screen simply stopped responding. By the time this happened, my child had lost interest in the device.

All-in-all, it is a decent buy that young children will enjoy but a lack of free games lets it down and I have question marks over their endurance.
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Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
The LeapFrog LeapPad 2 Explorer Tablet is a learning tablet that is aimed at children from three years old all the way up to nine years old. The tablet itself is reasonably small (about 7" x 9"), but is still quite chunky, with a good old weight to it (especially for very small hands). The tablet is constructed utilising a hard plastic casing which feels like it could easily become scratched, chipped or cracked in the hands on children. I therefore firstly strongly recommend purchasing a silicone LeapPad Explorer Tablet Gel Skin protective casing in order to protect the tablet against any accidental knocks and scrapes.

After inserting (and charging up) 4xAA batteries, the LeapPad is ready to have its four free Apps downloaded and installed, as well as all of the other setup procedures completed. To be fair, this was an absolute doddle to do. Just go online to the official LeapPad website, follow the online procedures to link up a PC/laptop to the tablet, and after following all the steps which will take about 10-15mins, you'll be ready to go.

Once my wife and I had chosen our four freebie Apps, we then perused the numerous other apps that are available to buy for the LeapPad. Flicking through the various pages of Apps available shows just how big of a choice there is. But wow!!! Some of them are a little on the pricey side. I strongly recommend that you go onto the Leapfrog website, go to the App Centre, and have a look at the various Apps and prices BEFORE purchasing the LeapPad. Some of the games and 'Ultra eBooks' are the equivalent to modern console game prices - especially if they involve popular cartoon characters.

Anyway, once you're all set up, with your first Apps downloaded and ready to use, you'll find that the LeapPad 2 is incredibly easy to get familiar with and learn how to use. Each menu screen tells you what you can do, directing you through the App with a twee American voiceover that helps the child learn what to do at each stage.

Another thing I should point out is that the touchpad screen seems a little on the delicate side for kids below about five years old. So I'd also highly recommend purchasing a set of LeapPad Clear LCD Screen Protectors so that your child doesn't ruin the touch screen when accidentally pressing too hard.

The LeapPad 2 also has a two built in cameras / video records, positioned on the front and back, allowing your little ones to snap off pictures of themselves as well as whatever's in front of them. With the various art and creative Apps available, your child can then play around with these pictures, incorporating their face into video settings and artwork.

The LeapPad 2 really is geared towards being educational and creative in a fun way. With the games on offer there's always a learning element attached to it, such as with spelling, counting, questions etc. Furthermore, the parents can also monitor their child's development with these games, with their online parent monitoring page which is installed onto your PC/laptop at the beginning.

To be honest, we expected the LeapPad 2 to be pretty good considering the various reviews and write-ups you can see across the net. Apart from the cost of the Apps, everyone seems to absolutely love the tablet. And both my wife and I 100% agree (as do our two kids). And what's really good about the tablet is that it can be enjoyed from three years old all the way up to nine years old - just by downloading more advanced Apps as your child gets older.
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VINE VOICEon 15 October 2012
Vine Customer Review of Free Product( What's this? )
I got this for my son for his main xmas present. He already had the original Leapfrog LeapPad ut compared to the LeapPad2 it's not very good. Leapfrog have made their version of a kids tablet much Much better. I found this out when I was setting up his account on the LeapPad2. Being a gamer myself, I couln't help but have a tinker with the games. For me and I'm sure my son, this was fun, and immpressive. Firstly it has an 4GB memory this time and holds twice as much accounts than the LeapPad1. It has TWO cameras which my son will love using as he feels himself as a photographer. Touchpad on the LeapPad2 is better as well, I didn't find myself as frustrated as i did trying to use the touchscreen as sometimes it didn't respond. LeapPad2's screen works first time. the mini games is comes installed with are surprisingly fun and addictive. The graphics I found were much better on the LeapPad2 than the original. Also with this one you don't have to have sit plugged into the wall. It's rechargable. So while he's away at school, I can leave it charging ready for him when he returns.

Is it worth investing in the LeapPad2 if you already have the original?- Yes! and worth every penny.
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