It was only a decade or two ago that the idea of buying your kid a cell phone — much less a smartphone — was a hotly-debated topic. But the times have changed dramatically, and these days that’s practically a necessity for staying in contact with your children and ensuring that they stay safe. That said, there are a lot of reasons you might not want to get young kids something like an iPhone. Cost is a major factor, of course, but so is protecting their privacy and keeping them safe online. Novus is a brand new 3-in-1 smartphone, smartwatch, and AI assistant that is different because it’s designed specifically for children’s needs.
Abardeen’s Novus just recently launched on Kickstarter, and was completely funded within four hours. Now it has reach more than three and half times that original funding goal. It’s designed to provide all of the features parents want their kids to have, while omitting the conventional smartphone features that could be problematic. Novus works on 4G LTE through all of the major cell phone carriers, so connectivity should never be an issue. It can make calls, handle video chats, texting, GPS location sharing, exercise tracking, and even has Google Assistant built-in. Most importantly for parents, there is an SOS feature and parental controls. But, notably, it doesn’t have access to the internet or the usual app store, so your kids are protected from harmful content.
The most interesting feature Novus offers is its modularity. Most of Novus’ components are built into a tiny “Core,” which can then be used with different add-ons to change its functionality. Snap it into the Novus Phone module to use it as a smartphone with a three day battery life. Or place it on the Novus Watch module to use it as a smartwatch, which lasts a full day on battery. There is even a Novus Home module that turns Novus into a smart home AI assistant, similar to a Google Home. Novus Core has a 1.28GHz quad-core processor, 4GB of RAM, and runs Android 8.1, so it should perform quite well.
If you want to buy Novus for your child, the Kickstarter campaign will be running until June 23rd. Early Birds can get a package with the Novus Core, Phone Module, and Watch Module for $149. Rewards are expected to be delivered in August.