In this ongoing update, we’ll fill you in on the latest in gear, gadgets, and new ideas that can make caring for your baby safer, more efficient, or more fun.
We also want to hear from you! Have you found a great gadget that’s helped you during pregnancy or parenting? Let me know, and we’ll share that idea with millions of our BabyNames.com readers. Email us!
That’s the question the BBC asks in a recent news story — and like most headlines that are questions, the answer is “No.”
Or at least, probably not…
“Babies may feel more comfortable about new technologies than their parents,” the article says. “They may be too young to have their own email address, but newborns and infants are being viewed by many tech start-ups as the next big thing.”
The article runs down many upcoming promising new gadgets — a lot of which we’ve covered here at BabyTech, but ends with a quandary: “There’s this dilemma to embrace technology, with possibilities that our child will be a coding genius by 11 — yet also offers us a child that doesn’t interact with others and endlessly plays on Minecraft.”
Tablets are getting so affordable you might be tempted to buy a Samsung or HP for your toddler — but Vtech is offering one designed especially for young children, and its only $45 here.
“With hundreds of apps to download, your child will have so much fun, they won’t realize they are learning,” the company says.
The InnoTab 3 Learning App Tablet has a full-sized 4.3-inch color touchscreen, and a “G-Sensor” for game play.
Also, “kids will love taking photos “with the built-in camera that rotates for better shooting angles. There are also 55 special effects, and it can record video as well.
Crying baby? Much-needed relief may be on the way.
The Mother’s Touch mimics a mom’s gentle massaging and caressing, the developer says. It’s “the only device to simulate a Mother’s circular clockwise massaging motion, to naturally soothe a crying, fussy baby.”
It can ease “teething, colicky, or fussy babies due to separation anxiety or sleep issues.” Use a drug-free solution to naturally ease baby’s discomfort.
The maker, a mom herself, is currently seeking funds on the crowd-sourced site Kickstarter for its first production run.
Don’t buy it? There’s a video here showing the device working its magic on an upset infant.
If you need to keep an eye on your baby in the backseat of your car, now a plush monkey, giraffe or puppy can do it for you. Infanttech’s “Always In View Baby Monitor” uses 2.4 GHz wireless to show your child while you are still driving safely and focusing on the road. There’s a high-definition camera inside a cute plush character that attaches to your vehicle’s headrest. The camera on the InfantTech Always In View Baby Monitor uses infrared lighting, which allows for it to be used day and night. For ages: birth and up. They list at $400, but are only $190 here.
Is it ever to early to get children engaged in programing their own computers? Well, before 4 years of age is too young — but 4-year-olds are the whom this Kickstarter project is aimed at.
The Kibo from KinderLab Robotics is “a robot kit that teaches youngsters fundamentals of programming through intuitive, age- and developmentally-appropriate technology” by showing kids how to customize and personalize their own two-wheeled robot base unit.
Kibo engages four- to seven-year-olds in building instruction sets that control the actions of robots by creating programs, or lines of code, through the use of familiar ‘manipulative’ wooden blocks. Each block represents an action for the robot.
It’s based on research at Tufts University. “It’s important that children grow up with the understanding that technology isn’t magic, but is something that they can learn to master, “the researchers behind the project say.
There’s more information here.
New baby not sleeping enough? This “rock n’ play” sleeper combines rocking with “calming vibrations,” Fisher-Price says. “The cozy fabrics give your little one a comfortable seat, and a gentle push from mom rocks and soothes baby.”
The Deluxe Newborn Vibrating Rock n’ Play Sleeper also collapses and is very lightweight, “so its easy to move around the house or bring along on trips.”
It’s $59 here.