Kids these days are growing up in a digital age, and it’s sometimes shocking how quickly they pick up on how to use technology. Kids as young as 3 are learning how to play with tablets, smartphones, and yes, even cameras. When it comes time to give your kids their own camera, there are several factors that should be carefully considered. Let’s take a look at the 5 tips that picky parents can use to grab the best camera.
1. Function Over Form – It’s Not About Picture Quality
When you’re shopping for your own camera, one of the first specs you’ll look at will be the mega pixels. You want a camera that takes the clearest, highest quality photos within your budget. As you shop for your kid’s camera, the first thing to do is let go of this criteria. Kids don’t care nearly as much about the quality of their photos. You’re looking for a camera that’s going to be easy to use and come with all the cool features that kids actually will care about.
2. Age Appropriate Vs. Long-Term Use
There are cameras marketed to kids as young as 2 years old, but these cameras are typically so simple to use that a kid can become bored and want a better model within a year or less. On the other hand, you don’t want to buy a camera that your child will have trouble with. The answer? Well, that all depends on your kid. Some cameras have features that younger kids wouldn’t be able to use but that wouldn’t get in the way, which allow kids to further utilize the camera as they grow. These might be a good compromise.
3. Internal Memory is a Must
Many of the cameras on the market don’t feature internal memory. Instead, they come with an SD card that must be inserted into the camera and then taken out to upload photos to the computer. Unfortunately, these SD cards are extremely small, which makes it very likely they’ll get lost, and very difficult for kids to handle. We prefer a camera with internal memory so the pictures stay right on the camera. All you have to do is hook the camera up to a computer via a cable that the camera comes with, and you can upload to your heart’s content.
4. Avoid Specialty Cameras With Characters on Them
You’ll see plenty of cameras based on popular cartoon or movie characters. While kids may initially get excited about this, we’ve found that with a child’s fickle nature they aren’t the best option. Yes, the child’s camera will be a toy that they’ll continue to use for years to come, but when you choose a camera with their current favorite character, you run the risk of the child getting sick of the camera when they decide on a new favorite character.
5. Pay Close Attention to How Many Photos / Videos Can Be Taken
One of the most important factors is how many photos or videos can be saved to the camera. Some have room for upwards of 500 photos, while others may come with room for only 10. Typically the more expensive a camera is, the more photos it can hold. You may decide that a camera with a smaller capacity is the best value for you, but be mindful of the limits. If you choose a camera that can take video, then be prepared for the videos to take up much more room than the photos do.
6. Let Kids Take Some Shots With a Throw-Away Camera at a Special Outing
If you’re going to be visiting someplace special, like a theme park, family reunion, or vacation, let the child practice with a disposable camera or two to see if they still want a camera after they’ve gotten their feet wet.
When you follow these tips you’ll be well on your way toward finally getting the right camera for your child – and getting your own camera back.
Guest author Rose Eliason writes about a number of technology-related issues. Check out some of her work at http://www.satelliteinternetserviceplans.com/.