Sprint (NYSE: S) today launched its new WeGo phone designed for kids age 5-12. The phone allows parents to track and contact their children, and allows children to place calls or send text messages to a pre-defined list of numbers. Sprint is selling the phone for $120 with monthly service of $9.99 for 1,000 voice minutes and 1,000 text messages per month.
"Sprint offers parents a wide variety of options to help keep their kids safe--from Sprint Mobile Controls and Sprint Family Locator to Content Filtering to the new Sprint WeGo," said David Owens, vice president of products at Sprint. "Sprint WeGo is the perfect starter phone to give parents peace of mind while teaching kids responsibility--how to keep track of a device, charge it and care for it--at a low price. This device has all of the basics without anything younger children don't need just yet."
Sprint said that, according to the CTIA, children typically get their first full-blown cell phone at the age of 12. The WeGo is designed for kids who are younger than that, Sprint said, and allows parents to stay in touch with their kids while also controlling their communications.
Sprint said parents can assign up to 20 phone numbers that the WeGo can call or send text messages to, and can remotely track the device via GPS. Parents can also set a number of parameters, including silencing the gadget during school hours and being notified when the device begins traveling over a certain speed.
Sprint is by no means the first company to design a wireless device for children. A wide range of offerings including Filip, Life360, Toddler Tag and Skip Hop safety harness are designed to allow parents to keep track of their kids.
Further, phones specifically designed for children are also not new. Enfora, Wherify Wireless and LG Electronics (via the VX1000 with Verizon Wireless) all at one point or another sold phones designed for kids. And Firefly Mobile continues to sell the Firefly phone designed for kids. MVNO Kajeet also offers kid phones.
- see this Sprint release
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