LeapFrog LeapPad Explorer Tablet

LeapFrog LeapPad Explorer Tablet

Kids of all ages love a tablet. There is simply something engaging about the form. Of course, this allure can be a bit of a hassle for the tablet-owning parent. The solution then is to buy the child his or her own tablet, and the LeapPad Explorer tablet from LeapFrog is a particularly fantastic option that will engage and challenge your kids.

Although tablet-shaped, LeapFrog eschews a sleek design in favour of a chunky construction that will hold up to the type of abuse a toddler can dish out. The case material is relatively soft, sealed well and easy to clean, so jelly-smeared fingers aren’t a great concern. Likewise, the screen, which is bright and crisp, is surprisingly durable. You won’t experience any of the rippling that occurs when a child jabs their finger into a standard LCD screen.

The 5-inch touchscreen is attractive, easy to read and extremely responsive. Many “toy” tablets can be quite frustrating due to their unresponsiveness, but the LeapPad Explorer responds wonderfully, even after some substantial abuse. Using the touch screen, children can draw, play games, read, write and perform arithmetic.

LeapFrog’s LeapPad Explorer even has a built-in front-facing camera. It doesn’t support FaceTime or any of the other apps adults commonly associated with these profile cameras, but it does allow kids to take full advantage of the built-in studio app. The Disney studio app supports animation, video and music, and kids will have a blast letting their creativity flag fly. For many kids, the camera-studio app combo is all you’ll need to keep them busy for hours.

The 5-inch touchscreen is 16:9, 480×272 pixels. It has 2 GB of built-in storage, a 400MHz processor under the hood and available in green or pink. At these specs, the LeapPad Explorer can be a little sluggish and if you push it.

But users who use it as intended won’t experience any trouble. In fact, at this price, the performance is a bargain, and it even has a video player (4:3 only), photo capabilities and video-capture tools. Users can also expand on the built-in functionality by buying and downloading apps from the LeapFrog store the same way they buy from iTunes.

Don’t worry. You won’t have to buy apps right away. The built-in software selection is quite nice, and it will keep your kids entertained. The store is a great option, however, when you kids begin to master those built-in apps.

September 6, 2011
Filed under boys toys, Featured, leapfrog leappad explorer, top toys 2011

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