What's the best smartwatch for kids? Below, you'll find a comprehensive list of wearables designed for tiny wrists, with some smart fitness trackers thrown in for good measure. Despite what some might think, smartwatches aren't just for adults; there is now a range of models that cater to a younger audience, some offering games and learning development.
Because during the summer holidays, you want to make sure your kids are staying active rather than spending every day in bed playing Fortnite. Maybe they could also get creative with the best camera for kids. If your child is a little older, then you may also want to check out the best smartwatches (for adults and teenagers) and best fitness trackers.
Best smartwatches for kids to buy right now
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We loved Fitbit’s Ace 2 fitness tracker for kids, but the new version – the Fitbit Ace 3 - builds upon an already near-perfect tracker by adding lots more battery life. Yes, it’s slightly chunkier and pricier, but the Ace 3 boasts fresh looks and more features thanks to a heart monitor under the hood.
The biggest boost is battery life. While the Fitbit Ace 2 had five days of battery life, the new version has eight, which seems pretty conservative since the watch we’re testing is still going strong on day nine. While it packs a punch feature-wise, the watch also looks great, and because there are no specific character or movie tie-ins, it offers longevity. It may even be acceptable to teenagers (maybe).
Read our full Fitbit Ace 3 review.
Fitbit Ace 2 is designed to help kids ages six and over learn healthy habits at an early age and encourage them to spend more active time with family and friends. Ace 2 has a swim-proof design with a useful bumper to protect the screen during kid-related activities all day long.
The Ace 2 is available in a selection of fun and bold kid-friendly colours. It debuts new animated clock faces, motivating challenges to keep kids moving, and colourful avatars and cover photos to personalise their profiles within the Fitbit app. Additionally, parents can stay on top of their kids’ activities with a Fitbit family account.
Read our full Fitbit Ace 2 review.
The Garmin Vivo Jr 3 isn’t just a fitness tracker for kids. It’s a handy wearable that unlocks games and adventures when paired with a phone app, which should get every miniature couch potato moving and delight constantly on-the-go kids too. As well as being fun for kids, the device allows parents to keep an eye on their kids’ activity levels, counting their steps and sleep, and of course, children can use it as a watch too.
The gadget is packed with features to help parents out too. When it’s connected to an app, they can view their kid’s activity and sleep, as well as see if a child has completed their goals, including ‘chores’. The watch lets parents assign tasks and chores and designate a reward virtual coin value, which can be redeemed by a child for agreed-upon rewards. They can also program the watch with their kid’s emergency contact information, which could be useful, although hopefully never needed!
Read our full Garmin Vivofit Jr 3 review.
The Spacetalk Adventurer packs a lot of punch, from offering a way to stay in touch to taking snapshots of the day. Its array of practical functions is impressive. However, the smartwatch is less fun than the Disney-powered Neo and considerably more expensive than its less feature-packed rivals. Plus, it requires a Nano SIM card and a Spacetalk app subscription.
However, if you’re looking for an Apple Watch-type gadget for kids that’s heavy on productivity and safety features and light on distractions, this is a good option. Yes, it’s a pretty expensive gadget, but for parents or guardians of adventurous kids who like to break a few rules, being able to keep in touch and stay on top of their whereabouts will likely prove priceless.
Read our full Spacetalk Adventurer review.
The Neo manages to do just about everything you could want from a smartwatch while putting Disney characters and safety features at its core. If you want to stay in touch with your child 24/7, then this is the one for you, with voice and messaging functions.
However, the smartwatch is considerably more expensive than its less feature-packed rivals, with a large upfront cost as well as a monthly subscription. The Neo may also lose some of its magic for those that like their gadgets slim and sleek, as well as efficient when it comes to battery life. Children are almost guaranteed to be wowed by the incredible clarity of the screen and fun features such as the animated Disney characters, however.
Read our full Vodafone Neo Smart Kids Watch review.
The Apple Watch SE is a truly excellent smartwatch for adults and children. It looks great, and it's comfortable, making it perfect if you have a style-conscious teen. Where Apple has cut back for the more budget price, your child won't notice (unless they're really into taking ECG readings). It feels like the full-fat Apple Watch experience, with all the advantages that it brings in communication, fitness tracking, and health and safety features.
You'll also want to use Family Setup, which is particularly well suited to younger children, as it gives you more control over what they can do with their Apple Watch. Family Setup turns the device into a GPS tracker that also allows you to talk to them through the smartwatch. That's ideal if you want to communicate with them while they're out, such as by giving them a heads-up that they need to come home soon from visiting a friend.
Read our full Apple Watch SE review (see also: Apple Watch for kids – how to set up an Apple Watch for your child)
This Garmin kid’s smartwatch has a whole range of functions which can make every day a little bit of an adventure. It’s a durable watch that is fine to be bashed around, and you can award points for doing daily tasks and chores. The idea is these can then be traded for treats, so your children are incentivised to brush their teeth or play nicely with their brothers. The colour screen and strap are customisable, and the latter is soft and stretchy, designed to be comfortable to wear both day and night. The VivoFit Jr 2 won’t need charging because the battery lasts for 'up to' a year. It actually seems to be more like 6-7 months, but that's not bad and will vary depending on use.
If you measure this watch simply by its features, the XGO2 is one of the leaders of the pack. It offers more flexibility than the Vodafone Neo when it comes to sending messages and making calls, making it the leader of all the kids' smartwatches and trackers we’ve tried when it comes to this feature. It similarly offers more security features than its competitors.
But the watch overall is a little lacklustre and joyless. It does a lot of things adequately, but little with any pizzazz. Photos are grainy, there’s little animation on the watch face, and the extras are pretty boring, so it feels quite pricey, not forgetting you’ll need to pay for a SIM too. If calls and safety are a priority, this watch is a good bet, but otherwise, there are more fashionable and fun options out there.
Read our full Xplora XGO2 review.
VTech have created the ultimate kid’s smartwatch, which has a lot of cool features but won’t burn too much of a hole in your wallet. This watch has a camera for taking photos and videos, a motion sensor for tracking activities, and a range of games and apps to use. There are over 50 different 3D-effect clock faces- both digital and analogue, depending on your preference and you can download all your favourite games and apps to customise this kid’s smartwatch.
This smartwatch from LeapFrog provides you with a virtual pet, just like the good old Tamogotchis from the 90s. You can feed and power your pet by completing activities or exercises to gain points. This watch is designed to teach your child core skills with a full curriculum that will have them learn how to tell the time and the importance of nutrition. There’s a range of games to play, but parental controls will allow you to limit the time your children spend playing so that they can focus during school time and bedtime.
How we test the best kids' smartwatches
We spend a lot of time reviewing the best smartwatches for children, so when it comes to recommending what kids smartwatch to buy, you can be safe in the knowledge that we'll recommend the best options for you.
For a start, all of the smartwatches we review are reviewed by parents and used with their children. We'll usually spend a week or longer testing new smartwatches, and the review process is fairly straightforward – we strap them to the wrists of our children. This helps us see how reliable they are and whether all of the features work as advertised.
It also lets us test whether the smartwatches actually capture the attention and imagination of the children, as well as how comfortable the children find the devices.
If the smartwatches have any advanced features, such asGPS tracking or calling, we'll try these out to test if they work and if they're worth the extra money they no doubt command.
Once the initial review period is complete we'll publish a full review, give thekids smartwatch a star rating, and add an abridged review to this guide.
How to choose the best smartwatch for kids for your children
There is a range of different features you can look for in a kid's smartwatch; some are purely for entertainment, whereas some have great learning development exercises, such as the LeapFrog LeapBand Activity Tracker or the VTech Kidizoom Smart Watch.
If you're an active family, then the Fitbit Ace 2 and Fitbit Ace are the latest kid's editions from Fitbit which can help motivate your children and track their activity. Finally, some kids' smartwatches are designed with safety in mind, including a GPS tracker which parents can monitor to ensure the whereabouts of their children at all times.