Fuhu is a company that kind of appeared out of nowhere and blew me away with the nabi 2. Its two subsequent tablets – the nabi Jr. and nabi XD – cover age groups on either side of the nabi 2, so the whole family can get in on the fun. While I've already reviewed the 2 and Jr., I've been waiting to cover the XD for one reason: the Play Store.
If you picked up Fuhu's nabi XD tablet for tweens, then it's time to grab it and hit the update button. An OTA recently began rolling out that brings some intriguing new features to the device, including an all-new launcher.
The XD Launcher isn't a typical launcher, however – it's more of a complete overhaul to the way the XD works and feels. It actually slightly reminds me of Chameleon Launcher, as it has time- and location-aware options that will display certain homescreens based on specific attributes.
Back in December of last year, Fuhu announced two new members of the nabi family: the jr. and XD. While the latter is designed for tweens and sports a larger form factor, the former is an itty-bitty device designed for the itty-bitty hands of a pre-schooler. At the time, two versions were announced: a 4GB variant for $99 and 16GB for $129. A lot has changed since that announcement, including the specifications of the unit with the larger storage capacity.
Back in early-to-mid December, Fuhu announced a pair of new tablets: the nabi Jr. for small children, and the nabi XD for tweens. While release details were scant for the nabi Jr., the XD was penciled in for a mid-January release date. That time frame has come and gone, but it looks like both device are now available through BestBuy.com, though it's possibly the company pulled the trigger a little bit early since there's been nary a word from Fuhu since the initial announcement.
Fuhu - the creator of the nabi and nabi 2 tablets - is on fire. Just a little over one week ago, they announced the nabi Jr., a new 5" tablet designed for small children, and today they're back at it with a tablet designed just for tweens: the nabi XD.
Now, I know what you're thinking: Seriously? A tablet just for tweens? I'm not going to lie - I, too, was skeptical of the usefulness of another specialty tablet for kids.
It's no secret that I'm a big fan of the Nabi 2 tablet for kids. As a father, I was extremely impressed with its vast suite of educational software, ease of use, and overall solid build quality when I reviewed it. The one major drawback of the Nabi 2 is that it's not really meant for pre-school-age children. Sure, it could help give your little little one a headstart, but $200 is a bit much to shell out when they may not even start using the device until the ripe-old age of five.
There's no doubt that the Nabi 2 is the absolute best tablet on the market designed just for kids. When I reviewed it back in June, I came away impressed with everything that Fuhu was able to pack into this device, all while keeping the price around $200 (that was, of course, before the Nexus 7 was announced, so a $200 tablet that didn't suck was impressive in itself). The build is solid, it's packed to the brim with educational software, and the Monarch UI is a fantastic and intuitive interface for kids.
We've talked quite a bit about Fuhu's Nabi 2 tablet, which was designed specifically for children. Given its $200 price tag and powerful Tegra 3 processor, 1GB RAM, and Android 4.0, this device is not only great for the kids, but it packs a punch for parents, as well. (To get a better idea of everything the Nabi has to offer, check out my full review.)
The one downside of the Nabi 2, however, is its lack of Google Apps.
Typically, when we think about gadgets like this designed for children, Leapfrog comes to mind. Then there are the junk devices that use two-year old tech marketed as "for kids." The Nabi 2 shatters that mold, however, by using the quad-core Tegra 3 processor to power the device. That, combined with an array of fantastic and educational software, puts this tiny powerhouse in a league of its own. Best of all: it does all that for only $199.
If you read this site, there's a good chance that you consider yourself a geek on one level or another. If you're also a parent, you undoubtedly want to share your geekdom with your children. Sometimes this means sharing your digital devices with the little one(s), which is something that I don't normally condone (it's just a disaster waiting to happen, in my opinion). But what if you could give your children a tablet of their own?