When it comes to anything mobile and electronic, Gabriel is an absolute nightmare. Sensory processing issues lead him to put too much pressure on things, and he has killed an iPad & an iPad mini by pressing the home button too hard. Because of this he is not allowed electronics unsupervised and NEVER allowed them in the garden. He knows this very well, hence his reaction (below in pictures) when he was caught having taken the V-tech Innotab 3 Baby out into the garden.
He needn’t of worried. The Innotab 3 Baby comes in a sturdy case that allows for outdoor play as well as plenty of dropping, throwing and general toddler type behaviour. This was the very reason I was happy to review one – to see if something could finally stand up to heavy duty Gabriel usage! The Innotab passed the Gabriel test with flying colours.
It was repeatedly dropped from approximately 3 feet. It was splashed with juice (it is NOT waterproof – these were little splashes) and it wipes clean very easily – no more trying to get the sticky juice caked in dirt off. It was trodden on, accidentally kicked down three steps, sat on, slept on (yes really!) and survived Gabe’s constant hammering at it. All in all, I would say that it built to stand up to most things a child can throw at it.
So it’s sturdy and resilient – but it is fun? Don’t let the name fool you – Innotab 3 Baby gives the impression that this is just for the 3 and under set – but that is not the case. It is recommended for children up to nine years old, and the hundreds of available apps reflect this. You can problem solve with Sophia the First or Monsters University, discover your inner scientist with the “Brilliant Scientists” bundle, exercise you artistic muscles with “Movie Maker” & “Photo Studio Deluxe” or try a little bit of everything with one of the special “Mix n Match” bundles. From “Baby Musician” for the 1-3-year-old to “Music Master” for the 4-9-year-old – there is something in every age category for every subject – I challenge you to become bored with this one!
Straight out of the box; the Innotab 3 is ready to play with. Four AA batteries are included, and the tablet is pre-loaded with 16 Apps, but it is not all about the apps, not at all. There is an 180-degree rotating camera which allows you to take photos & video. An e-reader and dictionary to help your child learn new words. An MP3 player – which is very popular in our house – & the usual calendar, notes, etc. that you would expect from any tablet.
The 4.3-inch colour touch screen is big enough to be fun – no squinting at the screen trying to read the little words – hoary! Your child can customise the welcome screen, take a photo of themselves and use it on their profile and make a friends list. You can also have some profiles on the tablet, so multiple children can play, without you having to listen to cries of “Mum – he messed up my game” all day.
Within the case, the Innotab 3 Baby looks like this:
The stylus is connected to the casing and is, therefore, more difficult to loose (I won’t say you can’t loose it, if your kids are anything like ours, they could loose something if it was superglued to their hand!). The power button is easily accessible, and there is also volume control – which always makes me happy. The camera can be rotated while it is within the case and displays the picture it will take, on the screen. The welcome screen is bright and clear, and game cartridges can be inserted while the case is on.
The case is very easy for an adult to remove – with no need for screwdrivers or other tools, but quite difficult for a child. Gabe is a deconstruction expert, and it took him several hours to work out how to get it open.
Once out of the case, the tablet is just as user-friendly. It has the same functionality as it does when it is inside the case, and V-Tech even thought to include a second stylus for “Out of the Case” use.
Now for the big questions – did we like it? Would we buy it? – Yes & Yes!
Both of the little ones have enjoyed the Innotab 3 Baby. I like the fact that it can be used for things other than games & that the games are educational. It stands up to heavy abuse and still comes out smiling, and Evey & Gabe fight over it – which to me says it is popular!
You can buy the Innotab 3 Baby from most major retailers and many places online – including the VTech Toys Store in both Canada & the US. It is available in blue – the colour we had – or pink and retails for around $60