Buying your kid a cell phone

August 11, 2008

Jacque Wilson wrote an interesting piece for CNN highlighting some things to know about getting your kid a cell phone. This is one of those topics that will never really go away – a new crop of parents faces this question every year. Why get your kid a cell phone, and at what age? Based on feedback at kajeet, safety and convenience seem to be the key drivers.

Our customers are often first time phone users heading to their first sleepovers, going to movies at the mall, taking class ski trips on Friday nights, and traveling with sports teams on the weekend. We see phone purchases peak during the life-stage events – graduation and back to school – and at Christmas when parents often give a gift reflective of their kid’s growing maturity. Regardless of age, and whether for security or a ride home, phones have clearly become essential for many families. And while the drivers for getting a phone may vary broadly, what is constant is the desire for the controls and limits that allow families to tailor the cell phone service for their kids.

The most popular tools are those that support budgeting and allowances, and those that allow parents to monitor calls and text messages for safety purposes. Close behind are the calendar function that makes sure the phone can’t be used during school, and access control to shut off services that don’t make sense for a particular family or kid. Kids often like these tools just as much as parents – what kid does not want to block text messages coming from a bully?

What tools are the most essential for your family? We would love to hear your feedback – it will help us make sure the kajeet service is right for even more kids.

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