Findaway World Launches a Kids Tablet Designed for Libraries, Classrooms

With tablet prices dropping year after year, more and more libraries are lending tablets to their patrons. Unfortunately most consumer tablets aren't study enough to survive long with this type of use, but Findaway World has the solution. Earlier this week this Cleveland-based company launched a new tablet which is specifically designed to be checked out to patrons.

The Playaway Launchpad is a 7" Android tablet with a custom rugged shell. The price starts at $99, and it comes preloaded with content - but only for kids, and not adults.

Findaway World Launches a Kids Tablet Designed for Libraries, Classrooms Digital Library e-Reading Hardware Library eBooks

Building on their past experiences with developing limited use devices for libraries,  Findaway World has taken the idea of a locked-down kids tablet and gone one step further.

Each Launchpad features a curated selection of content focused on a single topic and age group. For example, the "A-Maze-ing Mind" unit features games which teach critical thinking skills to 3 to 5 year-olds.

The tablets lack Wifi or a camera, and they come locked so that patrons can't tamper and install their own content. There's also a simple one-touch reset feature which erases previous user data and requires no staff maintenance, ensuring Launchpad is always shelf-ready for the next check out.

The Launchpad costs anywhere from $99 to $149, depending on the bundled content. A number of libraries, including Baltimore County Public Library, Cambridge Public Library, Chicago Public Library, and Nashville Public Library, are already using the tablet.

Let's hope adoption stays limited.

While the Launchpad does represent a better value than Findaway World's first media player, the Playaway View, the Launchpad doesn't strike me as the better option than the kids tablet's available on the consumer market. It might be easier to manage, but it's not necessarily more rugged.

What's more, the Launchpad is so limited in functionality that I don't think it justifies the cost. If a library bought a $99 kids tablet, they could set up two locked down profiles: one for adults, and one for kids (plus a third admin profile which isn't locked down). That would make the tablet at least ten times as useful, IMO.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:He's here to chew bubble gum and fix broken websites, and he is all out of bubble gum. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills at the drop of a hat. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.

2 Comments

  1. […] Findaway World Builds Kids’ Tablet for Libraries (Ink, Bits & Pixels) The new device comes bundled with select children’s content geared to particular age groups and is fully locked to prevent library patrons who borrow it from removing or uploading anything on their own. […]

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  2. […] Findaway World Launches a Kids Tablet Designed for Libraries, Classrooms (Ink, Bits & Pixels) […]

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