Anyone looking for a children’s smartwatch will sooner or later come across the name Xplora. The company, which was founded in Norway in 2016, now has more than 400,000 active users and is one of Europe’s leading providers in this segment, with its own locations in six cities, including Seoul, Hamburg and Toronto. The core of the portfolio is formed by the two Smartwartches XGO 2 (99 euros) and X5 Play (149 euros); this test is about the entry-level model.
XGO2 at a glance
In contrast to some China models for 50 euros, the XGO2 is a rock-solid product with extensive functionality and a good app. More on that later. First the technical framework data.
- Price: 99 euros
- Size and weight (body): 53 x 42 x 16 mm, 60 grams
- Display: 1,4 Zoll, 240 x 240 Pixel
- SoC: Spreadtrum SC9820E, Quadcore mit 1,2 GHz
- Connectivity: 4G, 3G, 2G, WiFi 4
- Location: GPS
- Memory: 512 MB / 4 GB
- Battery: 700 mAh
Brick on the wrist
All children’s smartwatches have a fundamental contradiction in common: Although they are intended for particularly narrow wrists, they are larger and heavier than most smartwatches for adults. An Apple Watch of the latest generation, for example, is only 10.7 millimeters thick and weighs either 31 grams or 37 grams, depending on the case size. This is primarily a question of cost: You could also make an XGO 2 more compact, but then it would at least be It costs 300 euros – and how many parents buy such an expensive smartwatch for their child?
Children’s smartwatches are thick, but the XGO 2 looks particularly powerful compared to other models. This is primarily due to the simple plastic design with the wide display bezels, which is not a revelation. We therefore recommend trying the watch on before buying it to see whether the child can handle the 16 millimeter protruding block on the arm. The large plastic housing also has advantages: It is robust and also waterproof, which means that a shower or brief immersion in fresh water are unproblematic.
Children are less interested in design and prefer to see what is happening on the display. The XGO 2 offers solid fare here, the 1.4 inch LCD is viewing angle stable and bright enough to be able to display content well outdoors, the resolution of 240 x 240 pixels is sufficient for the purposes. Important: In contrast to the X5, the XGO 2 does not have a protective film attached to the glass.
System and software features of the watch
SoC and memory provide sufficient power reserves to map the system (a modified Android 4.4) without delay. Operation with swiping gestures is intuitive and children understand immediately. With a swipe to the left you get to the main menu with access to the four basic functions phone, chat, camera, photo, if you scroll a page further (swipe to the left), then come alarm, stopwatch, pedometer and flashlight, follow on the last page then the calendar, voice recorder, settings menu – and a calculator.
Unfortunately, the calculator cannot be deactivated because there is no tiered app management. Children who are currently learning the basic arithmetic operations are constantly tempted to simply use the calculator. We think this is problematic.
The manageable number of watch faces is also to be criticized. There are only 7 installed and only 3 of them have an analog dial. That is far too little!
The chat function can also be used to send voice messages, but the maximum length is limited to 15 seconds. That’s quite short, especially for children who sometimes need a little longer to get to the point. We cannot understand why Xplora implements this limitation. Although the camera takes useful snapshots for children, it cannot be used for video chats. Again, more would have been better.
App: surface, location and features
The app looks well thought out and clearly displays all the important functions of a children’s smart watch. The location function, which can be reached with a tap on the address line, is central here. Xplora uses the maps from Google Maps, with one tap you have access to your current position, you can display the course of movement and define a safety zone. If the child leaves this zone, you will be notified on the smartphone.
Particularly important: GPS tracking works quickly and smoothly. As a rule, a few seconds are sufficient for the current position to be displayed on the map.
We also liked the fact that you can activate a school mode that mutes the clock for a defined period of time.
As an administrator of the Xplora app, you can define contacts that the child can call with the smartwatch. Only these contacts can be called via the smartwatch and – very important – only these contacts are put through to the smartwatch. So you have full control over communication and telephone spam is practically impossible
Pedometer with reward system
Xplora also shows why it is one of the leading providers of children’s smartwatches in Europe with the reward system. Because the integrated step counter not only shows the steps taken. These are also converted into so-called Xplora Coins (1000 steps = 1 Xplora Coin), which can be exchanged for screen time, mini-games, learning content and even real products on the specially developed GoPlay platform. This encourages the children to exercise more.
The battery life is designed so that the watch can be worn for a day – with moderate use, the smartwatch is 10 percent in the evening, with intensive use and multiple tracking it will be scarce until the evening. We would have liked a little more here.
The Xplora XGO 2 scores with a strong technical equipment for a reasonable price, the price-performance ratio is very good. The software base is also pleasing, both the user interface on the watch and the management via the app are successful, with a few exceptions (calculator). You have to cut back on battery life, but above all on looks. The chunky design doesn’t fit every child’s arm.
Source: RSS Feed: Connect – Tests by www.connect.de.
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