Kids/Babies Television Wearables

box&rox measures kid activity, lets them trade it for TV time

One of the foremost concerns for parents is the amount of time screens take up in their children’s lives. With smartphones, tablets, computers, consoles, and television all vying loudly for their time, it’s easy to see how most kids can forget about the outside world.

box&rox is a multi-layered system to ensure that children get the required amount of physical activity each day, with a goal of supporting healthy habits young to develop a solid foundation as they grow into adulthood. The system is comprised of three parts. The rox is a wristwatch that comes in a variety of colors that tracks a child’s physical activity throughout the day, earning sparkies as a reward. The box portion of the system connects to a television or a console’s power supply and meters the electricity available for use depending on how many sparkies were earned on a connected rox. The final of this system is an online world that serves as a place to use sparkies to gain more access to it, although the campaign didn’t do a great job at explaining why a child would interact with the world. The box&rox system serves as a warden of sorts that encourages physical activity and rewards it accordingly, taking the worry off the parent’s shoulder. The core system is going for £125 (~$198), while the campaign itself is looking for £10,000 (~$15,900) in funding.

The box&rox system is similar to what the Kudoso is doing for Internet access, and continues an overall trend of gamifying access to entertainment for younger children. Combining both in one household would lock down overuse for sure, but who’s to say kids won’t figure out a way to game the system itself? They usually always do, but I suppose an all night binge in Mario Kart could be viewed as an exercise in problem solving.

Connected Objects Kids/Babies

Turn Internet access into a game for your kids with Kudoso

kudosoGetting kids to unplug from their devices and go outside or study is one of the great struggles of the 21st century. Existing blocking or limiting solutions are inflexible and often require a parent on call in order to work correctly. Kudoso is a special router or firmware for existing routers that can be set up to track kids’ activities and reward them with access to their favorite websites and devices. With integration with Khan Academy educational material, kids can even agree to do some extracurricular studying in order to earn the points necessary to play video games or watch streaming TV shows. Access to Kudoso will open to backers in August and is available to those who pledge $89.