We all want to keep our children safe and under our watchful eye. But there will come times when they need to go out and do their own thing.
That doesn’t mean you can’t still track where they’re going and where they’ve been.
- Best Kids GPS Watch & Tracker – Detailed Reviews
- 1. TickTalk 3 Universal Kids Smart Watch with GPS Tracker
- 2. Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Watch
- 3. SZBXD Kids Smart Watch, LBS/GPS Tracker For Kids
- 4. Themoemoe Kids Smartwatch
- 5. LDB Direct Kids Smartwatch with GPS/LPS Tracker
Many smartwatches have a feature that functions as a GPS tracker for kids, so you know where they are when they’re not with you. Give yourself some peace of mind with a kids GPS watch for your children. Take a look at the top five watches on the market and decide which one works best for you.
Best Kids GPS Watch & Tracker – Detailed Reviews
1. TickTalk 3 Universal Kids Smart Watch with GPS Tracker
If you want a kids GPS watch that’s packed with features, the TickTalk 3 may be the right option. Not only does it act as a tracker for kids, but this attractive smartwatch has many useful functions to keep in touch with children too young for a cellphone.
One of the best things about this smartwatch is its connectivity capabilities. While other children’s smartwatches run on the old 2G network, TickTalk upgraded their kids smart watch to work on the newer 4G LTE network. That means better connectivity and possibly fewer dead zones when you’re tracking your child. Using the 4G network for GPS tracking also allows a parent to track multiple watches on the same map.
Also, this smart watch allows two-way video calling and supports 800×480 dpi resolution for crisper image quality during calls. Video calling isn’t the only way to connect with your child, though.
The watch also supports two-way text messages. Children can respond to messages with a variety of preset texts like “I’ll call you later” or “Just arrived.” If you aren’t satisfied with the messages that come with the watch, you can always add your own customized responses.
If you want to talk to your children directly, the watch supports two-way voice calling, too. Unlike other watches that limit you to 10 preset contacts, TickTalk allows for up to 53 preset contacts for one watch. Additionally, if you want to limit calling to only those on the contact list, you can turn on the Firewall feature. When this feature is in use, only the phone numbers programmed into the watch can call through to your child.
What We Liked
One of the biggest draws for this kid’s smart watch is its 4G/LTE compatibility. That means that you can locate your children faster and more accurately than other models that rely on older networks. We also like the fact that you can locate multiple watches at once without having to switch maps.
What We Didn’t Like
There is a slight problem with battery drain for the smart watches. It was more prevalent in older models where the watch would drain completely before the school day ended. It doesn’t happen to that degree anymore, but some of the features do drain the battery faster than we like.
- 4G compatible
- Locate multiple watches on the same map
- Wi-Fi connectivity
- Relatively pricey
- Possible battery drain issues
2. Garmin Forerunner 10 GPS Watch
If you have older children who care about their fitness, this watch is a great alternative to using an app on an expensive phone. This runner’s watch can track distance and pace using GPS technology. It’s not a tracker for kids per se, but for older children, this may be an ideal choice for tracking fitness stats.
The Garmin Forerunner 10 makes it easy to track daily runs. You can start tracking with the push of a button without having to worry about time-consuming screen swipes to get to the right app. It also alerts you after completing every mile as well as flashes your time for that mile on the screen.
The watch is a great training tool for children who want to improve their run times, too. It allows you to see a summary of a run, including stats like total distance, time, and pace after you complete one and save it. You even get motivational feedback in the form of your personal “bests” like longest run to date or fastest mile.
Garmin’s Virtual Pacer program also allows you to compare your current pace to target to get a little more out of your training.
And when you’re done?
Connect the watch to a computer!
You can use Garmin Connect software to check out your run route on a map as well as receive more detail about each mile completed.
What We Liked
This is a relatively simple entry-level runners watch that excels in the basics. For runners who want to track their progress, it’s a great choice with quick GPS connection and a large interface for viewing progress while running.
What We Didn’t Like
The Garmin Forerunner 10 is a bit pricey, especially when you take into account that it only relays basic information for runs. Also, battery life is “okay.” Runners that plan on using it under five hours should find this watch adequate for tracking their fitness. However, if you want to run marathons that last over five hours you may need to consider a different watch. Also, keep in mind that this doesn’t have a directional GPS. So, if you needed a watch to locate your child, this isn’t the watch for you.
- Simple interface
- Available in different colors
- Trusted brand
- Poor battery life
- Newer version available
3. SZBXD Kids Smart Watch, LBS/GPS Tracker For Kids
If you want the added security of a double tracker as well as an SOS Alert feature for your child, this watch may be a good choice for you. It also allows for limited two-way calling as well as an alarm clock to help a child manage their time.
The SZBXD kids smart watch offers the basic protection many parents want in a tracker for kids. It features both a GPS receptor as well as an LBS tracker for real-time tracking. The watch also has the added security of an SOS Emergency Call feature for your child. It’s simple to use and calls pre-programmed family phone numbers in the event of an emergency.
Calling is relatively limited on the smart watch, but you can make voice calls for up to 15 seconds. That’s enough time to check in with your child and cultivate a relationship even when they’re away from you.
The watch also contains useful features like an alarm clock to help your child with time management and a camera to capture memories.
What We Liked
The double security of using both GPS and LBS is a bonus as well as the SOS call feature. It can help soothe separation anxiety knowing that your little one has a little extra protection around their wrist.
What We Didn’t Like
Like many smart watches in this category, this one suffers from low battery life syndrome. However, you can probably use the alarm feature to remind a child to charge the watch regularly.
Also, the camera is a little outdated. It does take pictures, though, and children aren’t concerned about megapixels, so it isn’t a deal-breaker. It’s important to note, though, that this watch doesn’t have any type of water resistance. Children may not purposely throw a watch into a pool or bathtub, but accidents do happen.
- Budget friendly
- Easy to use
- Low battery life
- Outdated camera
- Not water-resistant
4. Themoemoe Kids Smartwatch
Are you looking for a vibrant beginner smartwatch for your child? This kids’ tracker watch by Themoemoe may be a good option for you. Track your child’s whereabouts, make calls and messages, and play games with this all-in-one watch.
Have you ever wondered where your child was when they said they were playing with friends? Using this watch with LBS tracking system, you can find out with a few swipes on your smartphone. You can even set a “security zone” for your child. When they venture out of the set zone, you get an alert via the smartphone app.
Keep in touch with your child throughout the day with its two-way calling and messaging feature. You can also save up to 10 phone numbers so that your child can keep in touch with others using the watch.
In a worst-case scenario, there’s also an SOS Emergency button located on the side of the watch. All it takes is a three-second press to dial the three emergency contact numbers stored on the watch.
Your child can even wear the smartwatch in the classroom without disturbing others. Simply set the DND mode to deactivate all watch functions except for the SOS Emergency feature.
What We Liked
This watch has a lot of features that may appeal to young children. Take pictures, use a stopwatch, play a math game or explore with the flashlight. It’s all in good fun while giving parents peace of mind knowing where their little one is with a quick check on their app.
What We Didn’t Like
It’s a little confusing to get this little device online and customer service for this manufacturer isn’t the best. Once you do get it activated properly, it works exactly the way you need it to. But before that, you may need to look online for extra instructions.
- Ability to set a security zone
- Kid friendly interface
- Confusing setup with limited customer service options
5. LDB Direct Kids Smartwatch with GPS/LPS Tracker
There are plenty of smartwatches for kids on the market, but very few with a price point that won’t break the bank. If you’re a budget-conscious shopper looking for a beginner smartwatch for your little one, the LDB smartwatch may be a good option.
Find out where your child is at any time of day with this attractive kids’ smartwatch by LDB. It uses LBS/GPS technology to pinpoint your child’s location with the swipe of your phone app. This watch also features the SOS emergency function that cycles through emergency contacts until someone picks up the phone. Parents can save up to 10 phone numbers on the watch as well as make calls and send messages.
What We Liked
Kids like the easy interface and vibrant look of the smartwatch. It’s also relatively water-resistant, although there’s no IP code listed with the item description. Still, it’s extra added protection against accidental dips and spills.
What We Didn’t Like
There are a couple of things that may bother parents more than children wearing them. The first thing is the Christmas background. There isn’t a way to change the background to a less seasonal alternative. Also, the phone only shows military time or an analog clock so it may be difficult for a child to use it to tell time.
- Vibrant colors
- Large touchscreen interface
- One seasonal background
- Only military time or analog clock options
The Complete Kids GPS Watch Buyer’s Guide For You
Before you go shopping for a kids GPS watch you need to know what to look for. Not all watches offer the same things. Check out the key features that should be on your radar when making your buying decision.
Your children’s safety is your number one concern. Smartwatches that have GPS trackers can help ease your mind when your child is out of sight.
GPS or Global Positioning System is a tracking and navigation system. It uses radio waves and satellite connections to compute the exact geographic coordinates off things or people. GPS can typically track anything on the surface of the planet as long as it has a device that has a receptor for GPS.
GPS tracking was first used by the government for military navigation. Nowadays, though, you can find them in devices you use daily from smartphones and tablets to navigation devices.
You may also see LBS featured on a kid’s tracker watch. LBS is slightly different than GPS technology. LBS or Location-Based Service uses mobile phone signals instead of a GPS receptor. Tracking happens on a relatively local scale using local mobile service providers’ GSM cell towers.
Both LBS and GPS track location, but LBS is a little less precise because it uses a location estimation in relation to a cell tower.
SOS Alerts can help give parents peace of mind if the worst should happen and your children need to contact you right away. The feature may differ slightly depending on the smart watch model and manufacturer, but the premise is the same: It makes emergency calls when a child needs help.
For many models, all a child needs to do is press a specified button for a few seconds to activate the SOS Alert feature. Pressing the button calls up to three pre-programmed SOS family numbers, cycling through each one until somebody picks up the phone. Some smartwatches even come equipped with an alarm that alerts your app when a child presses the SOS button.
Keep in mind, though, that this feature does require an active SIM card to work properly. Some watches come with an unlocked sim card that you can associate with your mobile provider. But other models require that you purchase a SIM card separately.
Some kids smart watch models support two-way calling, but there are some restrictions depending on the manufacturer and model. Generally, you can store up to 10 phone numbers on a watch so that your child can make and receive voice calls. Some models even allow for voice messaging, video calling, and text messaging.
Other Modes of Communication
You may wonder about other popular modes of communication like video calling or messaging. Generally speaking, most kids GPS watch styles offer two-way calling to a certain extent. However, extra communication features like Wi-Fi calling availability can vary depending on the watch you select.
Budding photographers can capture the perfect moment with a camera feature on their kid’s smart watch. Kids can activate the camera feature with the push of a button or tapping on the icon of their smartwatch screen. Most watches allow you to upload photos from a watch to a PC using a micro-USB cable.
Your child leads an active life so protecting a smartwatch against water damage is a good investment. Many watch styles are water-resistant but very few are actually waterproof. You may want to be careful about that distinction when buying a watch.
“Water resistant” generally means that the device can withstand accidental encounters with water. So, if your child gets caught in the rain or washes his hands exuberantly, you don’t have to worry about shortening the life of the watch. Most likely, the watch has a light coating that inhibits a light sprinkling of water from getting into the housing.
Keep in mind that if the watch has a “water-resistant” label, it won’t withstand prolonged dunks in liquid like swimming in a pool or taking a bath.
Waterproof, on the other hand, is self-explanatory. Any device that’s “waterproof” technically means that it’s impermeable to water. If a device is truly waterproof, it doesn’t matter how much time it spends in the water because it can’t enter the housing and damage circuitry. You may find some kids smart watch styles that say that they’re “waterproof.” Since there’s no industry standard for that classification, it’s still up in the air just how much water the watch can withstand. If the watch has an Ingress Protection Rating or IP Code, you may have a better idea of its ability to resist water.
Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs About Kids GPS Watch
How Does a GPS Kid Tracker Smart Wrist Watch Work?
A kids GPS watch works the same way that your car’s GPS navigations system does. The watch has a GPS receptor that you can activate via a downloadable app on your mobile device. When you activate the app, the GPS feature can pinpoint your child’s location.
The actual accuracy of the coordinates depends on the type of tracking the watch features. For GPS watches, it’s accurate from 10-100ft of your child’s location. Using Wi-Fi or LBS tracking is a little less precise. Wi-Fi tracking can be between 100-500 ft., while LBS tracking is between 100 ft. and 20 miles.
Tracking is entirely dependent on an active SIM card and using a 2G network. Also, you’ll have to download the smartwatch app to activate your child’s tracker capabilities.
Is a Kids GPS Watch Waterproof?
Some kids GPS watch styles say they’re waterproof with an IP code in the description. You can look up what the specific code means if it’s listed. But if you’re looking for an exclusively waterproof watch, be careful about reading the item description.
Some watch descriptions say, “water resistant,” yet they don’t list an IP code. So, the actual resistance may vary depending on the manufacturer.
Can Kids Watches Have GPS Without Phone Access
Any kids’ tracker watch style requires an activated SIM card inserted into the device to use the phone features. However, the GPS receptor isn’t dependent on having an active card in the watch.
Of course, if you prefer that your child not have access to the phone features, most watches have parental controls to varying degrees. Some watches allow you to turn off the keypad to make outgoing calls except to the ones pre-programmed into the watch.
Another useful feature may be the Do Not Disturb feature. This allows parents to stop all calls, messages and alerts from making noise during certain times of the day.
How Do I Activate GPS on Kids Tracker Watch?
Watch activation is relatively simple.
First, you need an active SIM card. Some watches include an unlocked SIM card compatible with GSM carriers in your area. They also work with prepaid carriers, too, as long as it’s a GSM network.
After you insert an active SIM card, it’s time to download the smartwatch application. Apps vary depending on the watch you buy, but you can find the name and where to download it in the device’s paperwork. Follow the instructions to register your watch and log into the app.
On your smartphone device, you should see a menu of features for your child’s smartphone. Tap on the GPS feature and follow any on-screen instructions to start the GPS.
If you’re in the market for a great kids GPS watch to help keep your kids safe, the TickTalk 3 is one of the best options on the market. Not only does it operate on the 4G/LTE network, but it also has more calling and parental control capabilities than its competitors.
However, the price tag for the TickTalk 3 may be a bit out of reach for some shoppers.
Budget-conscious shoppers may appreciate the lower price point of the SZBXD kids smart watch. It does everything you expect a tracking device for kids to do with calling capabilities to keep you connected. It may lack some of the bells and whistles that the TickTalk 3 model offers, but it can help give you peace of mind at a price that won’t break the bank.