nabi Kid-Friendly Tablets & Camera

Okay guys. Finally something I can be useful with.

We debated for a long time whether to get my son (7) and daughter (5) a tablet of their own to share. I had looked into several options, including Kindle FreeTime, but at the time I couldn’t set up separate time limits for both kids (they seem to have upgraded it since then). What I really wanted was

(a) something sturdy and made for the type of treatment kids can dole out,
(b) something that had different profiles and time-limiting software with lots of options
© something that did not use proprietary software (like a leappad) but could be connected to appstores.

I was looking into the Kurio, which didn’t seem to have good time limits software, when I heard about the Nabi. They bragged about their treasure box, time software, educational software, etc… It seemed to have everything I wanted, sort of like a LeapPad made into a real tablet.

So, we found an AMAZING deal on the Nabi at Thanksgiving, like less than half price, and got it.

Well, here’s what we got:
(a) YES. It is REALLY HEAVY. It has a honeycombed, metal back plate and a heavy duty rubber bumper. I would not feel nervous about giving this to most kids 3 and up. They would have to be purposely banging the screen on the corner of something to do damage to this.

© Yep. They have their own, but they also work with Amazon and with the Google App Store. [Kindles don’t work well with the Google store.]

(b) Hm. Well, yes, and then again, NO.

The people designing the Nabi clearly expect that you will be getting one for each of your kids, and threw the possibility of different profiles on there as an afterthought.

-You can create a profile for each kid.

-The profiles have very limited customization. The child can have one of several slightly diverse cartoon photos (ie, blond or brown haired white kid, darkskinned darkhaired kid, black kid.) However, they all have the same face and hair, just colored differently. You can’t pick your own photo. You also can’t change the number of “pages” of icons that are available, you can’t change what order the colors appear (e.g. all pink pages, alternating green and yellow) - you are stuck with the number and order that they set up, and you cannot pick your own background images.

Not that ANY of this bullet point is a huge deal, but I had to start somewhere and that’s the start.

  • You can set up for different access for each kid. There is a parent option for choosing which apps are available, and a separate option for how long the Nabi will allow the kids to play. This way, I could give my son access to some games that my daughter couldn’t use, and vice versa, and I could set up different lengths of time for them to use those games.

  • The shortest increment of time that you can set as a limit is 15 minutes. So it’s zero, 15, 30, 45, etc.

  • There are some pieces of software that cannot be removed from the kids’ profiles, including their proprietary kid-safe web browser and video viewer. I may be alone in being the mean mom, but I got the tablet for them to play educational games most of the time and mind-mush games some of the time, and don’t think they need to watch videos on it. We have a TV for that. The workaround was to set the amount of time available for video and web use, to be 0 minutes… and to move those icons to the very last page hoping they wouldn’t try to click on them.

  • And now on to the “best” part. So, child #1 has been peacefully playing on the Nabi for 45 minutes, and his time is up. A sassy go to sleep animation comes up, where the Nabi sulks that it doesn’t want to go to bed, and then falls asleep. [Side note: I hate that animation. The tone of voice has a bad attitude.] Now Child #2 wants to play. She pushes the menu icon so that she can change profiles… but the Nabi is asleep and that option will not come up. She brings the Nabi to the parent. The parent cannot switch profiles from parent mode, it has to be done in Nabi [kid] mode. This is what has to be done to switch profiles when one kid has reached his limit and the Nabi is asleep:

  1. Go into parent mode.
    —1a. Click on Mommy Mode
    —1b. Enter parent password
    —1c. Wait for Mommy Mode to load
  2. Open Time Limits.
  3. Navigate to child who has reached his time limit.
  4. Remove time limit, save, exit.
  5. Go into Nabi [kid] mode.
  6. Open menu, choose Change Profile.
  7. Enter parent password.
  8. Get popup to select alternate profile, click, save.
  9. But wait! Child #1 still does not have any time limits! Will you remember to reinstate them next time? Maybe you did this process last time and didn’t bother reinstating the time limits, so child #2 doesn’t have any limits right now. Are you feeling lucky?
  10. Click on Mommy Mode.
    —10a. Click on Mommy Mode
    —10b. Enter parent password
    —10c. Wait for Mommy Mode to load
  11. Open Time Limits.
  12. Navigate to child who has no time limit.
  13. Replace time limit, save, exit.
  14. Hand the Nabi to your kid, who has been waiting 3-4 minutes for you to do all this.

So in short, the people who programmed this did not ever test it with real kids, who will wait until their time is completely dead and gone before handing over the Nabi for the other kid, and aren’t interested in making it convenient for families with more than one child to use.

What is the point of having profiles if you have to go through this rigamarole every single time you want to switch between them?

Honestly, if it wasn’t for the educational software that comes with it, which my kids like and which is personalized for their grade levels, I probably would just switch it to a single profile, and add time to the time limits every time I hand it to a kid. That way, at least, I would only have to go into Mommy Mode once each time I switched kids.

I registered a ticket with the manufacturer back at Christmas and heard back once, but afaik they have not made any progress on it. I was told that it is rare complaint.

Other complaints: more frequently than my Kindle Fire or my phone or my husband’s tablet, we find that sometimes it does not respond to touch. I check to be sure that the screen is clean, but it is… so we have to turn it off and back on again.

-They tell you that your kids can earn treasure coins for playing their proprietary educational software, but there are two sets of software and only one grants coins, and then, you have to buy the coins and have them in a sort of “bank” for the kids to earn them from. They can then use those coins to buy apps and videos. You can’t block which things they buy with the coins… unless you don’t buy coins for them to earn.

-They have this REALLY COOL CONCEPT of getting chores done for coins, but the kids can’t mark their own chores as completed. That makes sense, so they can’t “cheat” when they haven’t done it, but Nabi makes it time consuming for you to go into the system and mark things done for each kid. You can do it online, but again, you have to load each kid separately. They really need to have a parent app that interacts with the kids chore app, allowing the parent to pull out his/her own phone and mark the items as completed quickly and easily instead of having to log into a website where access to that page is at least three clicks deep.

It’s also really confusing about how you earn coins with it - you have to do the chore every day for a week to earn the number of coins listed, as far as I can tell. You don’t earn coins each time you mark a task complete. But then again, maybe I need to buy coins for them to earn. It’s not really clear.

BOTTOM LINE: If your budget can handle getting one per kid, you have an app budget that you can spend on coins for them, and you aren’t as picky as I am about them having access to videos on their tablet, this thing would be awesome for you.

If you have multiple kids and can’t afford one per kid, you might want to look elsewhere and simply find third party time-limiting software for whatever you find.

Also, Nabi needs to get bought out by LeapFrog and have LF fix all the problems they have :confused:

Hiya Adelas!

This is Tyler from nabi Cares, we hope this message finds you well! Thank you so much for your review, we really appreciate it! You touched on some really good points in the post that caught our eyes and hopefully we can shed some light on some of the issues you are experiencing.

We understand from your post that the nabi Time Controls are not as convenient as you would like them to be. From your description, I can definitely see where it could be frustrating for your children to have to wait so long for their turn on the tablet. We take your feedback very seriously, and actually, since you called in and expressed your concerns about this, we’ve already forwarded all of that information on to our software team, who is working diligently to fix this issue on the next update to the Time Controls app!

To touch on the coins aspect, you can purchase coins to give to your children as they earn them through completing chores and educational lessons, kind of like a digital allowance. As you mentioned, you will need to purchase coins to reward the children for completing the task. We think Chore List and Treasure Box are great because it teaches kids about responsibility and how to make the right choices. We recommend sitting down with your child and going through the applications that you and your little one want to download. If there is an app that you don’t want them to have access to, it can be easily removed with the Add Apps application.

To have a little fun with customization, you can set the profile picture in nabi mode to be a picture of your child. We have provided a link for instructions on how to change this as follows: Adding and Editing a Child’s Photo. To change the background in nabi mode, please follow this link: Changing the Wallpaper in nabi Mode.

Again, we really appreciate your feedback about our product, and can’t wait to get the issue with Time Controls resolved for you! Please don’t hesitate to reach back out to us if you have any questions or concerns, or need help with Chore List and Treasure Box, we will be MORE than happy to lend a helping hand to you. We hope you and your family have a nabitastic night,

Ta Ta for now!

I bought this to record some of my son’s little league baseball game. It’s an awesome camera. I don’t care that it’s not kid friendly. All I know is that it has a fish eye lens and from behind home plate I can get the whole field when I record. With all the accessories, remote control, removable LCD screen, etc… It’s a great steal at the price. Totally worth it. Just bought 2 more as gifts for coaches. "Kids are spending more time than ever in front of screens, and it may be inhibiting their ability to recognize emotions, according to new research out of the University of California, Los Angeles.

The study, published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior, found that sixth-graders who went five days without exposure to technology were significantly better at reading human emotions than kids who had regular access to phones, televisions and computers."

The camera looks like a solid deal for anyone who wants WA video and a tough little still camera. In for one.

Mothership reviews are largely positive. This will be “discovered” by the “toy camera- artsy” crowd soon and so you better get one now.


Here is some test video I shot with mine that I bought off of the main page some time ago. It’s on the 720p, 60fps setting.

Pardon my dirty dashboard

Taken with this Nabi Square,not the newer model?


Woot. Seriously. If you want to move some of these cameras, put it in it’s own ad. There is some real buzz about it and putting it in with kid’s toys is a mistake.

Greetings baseball fans!

My name is Tyler from nabi cares, thank you for being a part of our nabi community! We are happy to hear that you and your son are loving the nabi Square HD.

We are really glad that you are taking advantage of the wide angle lens to see your child hit a home run right out of the park! You can also take pictures to capture the whole field as your son makes the game winning catch!

The camera is designed to be shock proof, dust proof, water proof and most of all kid proof. It’s recommended for ages 10-14, but can be used by everyone. From your post, you pointed out that the camera isn’t kid proof. We’d love to hear your input and ideas on how the camera can be enhanced. We are always open to suggestions and love to hear from our Community Members who use our products on a daily basis.

Please feel free to private message us or check out our Facebook page if you have any questions.

We hope you and your family have a fantastic day, and your son slides to home base next game he plays!

Tyler V.
nabi cares Team