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Does Your Smartphone Double As a Baby Toy?

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File this under What will they think of next?”

We all know that smartphones are hugely popular. (Some of us have them and wouldn’t be without them, Yours Truly included.) And we generally know that apps for said smartphones are plentiful, varied, quirky, helpful, and generally curious.

We’ve come up with our list of the top 26 apps for students, parents, and families. Why? Because these apps can make life easier. Not better, mind you; just easier.

That said, some apps are, well, simply over the top. Take Geico’s BroStache (allows you to speak via your smartphone with a “mustache”), and the Bowel Mover app, which tracks…yeah, you guessed it (though, come to think of it, this might be a good app for parents who are potty-training their toddlers!).


Take our poll: Does your baby or toddler find your smartphone irresistible?


But how about apps that turn your smartphone into child’s play—literally? Fisher-Price sells hugely popular apps (700K downloads+) that the toy giant calls “Apptivity” sets. The apps go hand-in-hand with hardware that protects your smartphone. The “Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case” for iPhones and iPods is for babies 6 months and older. The cases have handles and rattles, and they protect your smartphone (or iPod) from your baby’s drooling, teething, and misdials while she’s playing with it. For toddlers age 3 and up, there’s the “Kid-Tough Apptivity Case” for your iPhone or iPod Touch. This case comes with a clear screen that protects against your little guy’s sticky fingers (and spilled glasses of milk, we presume). It also has a hole so that your toddler can take photos with your smartphone’s camera.

Are these apps over the top? Giving babies expensive smartphones to play with? As moms, many of us relented at some point and let our babies play with our car keys (which were full of germs and just gross), until that one time when (some of us) went to take the keys back only to find that they were missing (dropped by baby many, many steps ago). And, sure, your baby is just as fascinated today by your smartphone. But downloading apps for your baby to play on the phone?

Am I just getting old? Or, instead, do I just think that my $300+ smartphone isn’t a toy...



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Do you allow your children to watch TV or play on the computer before doing their homework?