All parents want the best for their children and to make sure they are doing a good job at teaching them good habits. However, it can be difficult at times to have a child listen to commands such as it's time to brush their teeth or that playtime is now over.
Instead of feeling like they are being too militant by making their child do a chore or feel like they are being the bad guy by saying "no," parents can still teach their kids important tools and structure thanks to the Octopus smartwatch.
Developed by the San Francisco-based company JOY in partnership with a team at the HAX hardware accelerator program in China, Octopus is the smartwatch for kids that helps them learn how to be responsible and independent.
The smartwatch features icons that are easy to understand that represent things like breakfast time, play time and time for a bath, along with the time, which is displayed digitally. Because of the use of icons, Octopus can be used by even young children ages three to eight years old who may not yet know how to tell time.
Children at this age may have a hard time wrapping their heads around the concept of time. Octopus makes learning about time and time management easy by scheduling a day of activities and reminding the child when to do them.
The parent downloads the accompanying app and enters in what activity is expected to take place during that specific time, such as having dinner at 5:30 p.m., a bath at 7 p.m. and bedtime at 9 p.m. Parents can set how long this activity takes place for and receive reminders on their smartphone so they know what their child should be doing.
The app also features templates for routines based on the child's age and gender, or the parent can create their own tasks or chores, with the watch storing up to 600 icons. The data is then sent to the smartwatch via Bluetooth.
This makes Octopus just as beneficial for parents, because it serves as an assistant to help manage daily routines and keep these routines consistent and acts as a scheduler for the child to know when it's time for meals, schoolwork, bedtime, etc.
With Octopus, parents also teach their children lessons about good habits without having to assign chores or risk the child having a tantrum for not wanting to listen.
For the child, he or she can build self-esteem as they start to accomplish tasks expected of them on their own.
The smartwatch also grows with the child over time, since there are three different modes for different stages of development. With the second and third modes, the child will learn how to tell time as the watch face turns to an analog clock.
Octopus comes in four colors: Blue Sky, Lemon Green, Pink Candy and Dark Grey. It weights 18 grams, is water resistant, has haptic feedback, a nightlight and battery life of up to 96 hours with a recharging time of three hours with its magnetic charger.
While the smartwatch looks cool, there is even a built-in gamification feature that parents can turn on so kids can unlock rewards if they complete their chores.
While every child needs structure to master good habits, the Octopus smartwatch is especially helpful for special needs kids since they sometimes need to be reminded or prompted to do a task.
JOY launched a Kickstarter campaign to help fund this product and has already reached its $50,000 goal, raising a total of more than $350,000 with 28 days still to go. Those who pledge $59 will get the early bird special for one watch with a charging app and access to the iOS or Android app when the smartwatches ship in March 2017.