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| 20 best phones for kids 2017 UK: What's the best phone for children?


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Long gone are the days when you can fob off a child with your second-hand phone. These days they know more about tech than most adults, and they want the best of the best just as you do. But if they don’t drop it and smash it they’ll likely leave it at school and lose it, or swap it for something ridiculous like a football, and you don’t want to end up out of pocket. Here we round up what we think are some of the best phones for kids, those that blend value with ease of use, strong build and, importantly, enough power to play the latest games and watch YouTube.
Also see: Best Phone Deals
How much you spend on a phone for your child is really up to you. While we wouldn’t advise paying flagship prices on the very best phones , we do recognise that some parents will be prepared to dig deep. We’ve focused primarily on sub-£200 budget phones in this chart, but also included some slightly more expensive mid-range phones. You can also go cheaper (check out our round-up of the best basic phones under £50 ) or more expensive (check out the very best phones ).
Sometimes buying a Chinese phone can be a very good way to get an attractively priced phone with much higher specifications than you would otherwise get in the UK. However, if you do decide to buy a Chinese phone, unless your child is especially techy we’d advise steering clear of Xiaomi and Meizu models, which don’t always preinstall Google Play and can sometimes pop up Chinese-language notifications that may be confusing to a child. If you buy from China, first read our advice on buying grey-market tech.
One thing to keep in mind is that your child will be using the phone on a PAYG basis unless you’re prepared to take out a contract in their name. If you want to go down this route you’ll save money by buying the phone upfront and choosing a decent SIM-only deal. A good compromise for a PAYG deal that you can keep an eye on is offered by GiffGaff , which lets you purchase low-cost one-month goodybags that offer a certain number of minutes, text and data, and no more. Your child won’t need to keep tabs on what they’re using and neither will you.
You should also consider own-brand PAYG handsets offered by mobile operators, which are often subsidised by the operator in order to get you on their network, which means you get more phone for your money.

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