Disney, Vodafone and Fuseproject create a smartwatch that safely connects your child to the digital world

How many of you have younger siblings that you feel have access to technology and a digital world that didn’t exist when you were growing up? The opportunity for the younger generation these days is endless but the general feeling is they don’t quite grasp the responsibility that goes along with interacting with it. For instance, the smartphone provided (for emergencies) but gets ‘lost’ regularly, because they don’t understand how valuable/expensive that device is. They didn’t pay for it, after all. They also spend most of their free time on Social Media, which, like all internet communities, has its “good” and “bad” qualities. this generation is growing up in a completely different landscape, one that is too vast and overwhelming to guide them through.

Neo smartwatch might be the tool they need. The product offers a safe way for kids to interact with smart-technology, with some parental supervision. The Neo watch has similar features to our smart-watches (snapping pictures, sending text messages, calling family members, etc.), but in a product that is easy for children to use. The watch’s display is a 1.2-inch touch screen, which is large enough for their not-quite-nimble fingers. Most functions can be controlled with the push of one button (located in the top corner), making it even easier for your child to use. The watch is also angled at 45-degrees, which provides a more comfortable viewing angle and reduces wrist strain. “The smartwatch’s durable and ergonomic design is coupled with an angled watch face that improves the viewing angle for the user, reducing strain on the wrist. The angle also provides a comfortable and natural way to use the front-facing camera. By tilting the screen at a 20-degree angle, we remove the need for problematic over-articulation of the arm, offering a more comfortable movement for viewing and interacting.”

To amplify the workings and how it helps the children, the studio explains, “An easily-accessible and tactile elastomeric button is strategically positioned at the top corner of the screen and serves as the primary action button for all of Neo’s basic functions: taking pictures, answering calls, gaming, and more. A child is also able to hold this button down for 5-seconds to trigger the “quick call” function, contacting family members from a circle of trusted contacts. A built-in speaker and microphone enables communication with family members using VoIP for calls, and chats, both one-to-one and in a group.” During my childhood, I played with quite a few toy versions of real products: an Easy-Bake oven, Barbie-branded flip-phone, you get the idea. The Neo smartwatch serves the same purpose, but for a new generation – one that would benefit from a supervised introduction to digital technology.

Designer: Fuseproject for Vodafone

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