The age old questions… Should kids use technology at a young age? And what technology is ok for kids? Studies have shown the effects of smartphone use on young kids and how it can be detrimental to their attention span. Okio created a solution to our smartphone addicted age, the Okie-talkie.
If you read recently, walkie-talkies have not faired well on Vox Inventum. However, the Okie-talkie approaches a new perspective on old tech. This new walkie-talkie simplifies smartphone tech to just voice messaging. It allows kids to communicate with their friends without a host of distracting and mind-numbing apps.
Okie-talkie is a palm-sized voice messenger. So it functions as a simple messaging device and nothing more. The face displays a basic light system to show if you have any messages and uses only two buttons for all functions. Above all, the display doesn’t distract. It simply displays sent and received messages and flashes a few lights. No games, and no internet.
But this walkie-talkie offers more for parents concerned for their children. All device functions must also go through a smartphone (presumably owned by a parent). The child cannot communicate to an unapproved Okie-talkie. Also, all voice messages go to the smartphone as well as the Okie-talkie. So parents can have complete control over what their child encounters with their cellular device.
Overall, Okie-talkie provides an interesting development in technology. It tackles the distraction issue while still keeping kids connected. However, this devices requires cell service. So it requires a subscription service in package of $3 a month +$0.05 for every message, $10 a month with unlimited messages, or $100 a year with unlimited messages. On top of that, Okie-talkie costs about $100 retail. So Okio provides a reasonably priced cellular device for kids that parents can feel comfortable with.
Okie-talkie seeks an enormous amount of funding on Kickstarter. They have raised $12,000 of a whopping $499,000 goal. I’m not sure if this is a mistake, but the goal seems unattainable. Let us know what you think in the comments below!