The 7 Best Phones for Kids in 2023

Find the perfect phone for your child

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If you’re considering purchasing a phone for your child, it’s a big decision—while you want them to be able to contact you at any time, having a phone is also a big responsibility. 

Luckily, many phones are ideal for kids, giving parents a reliable and affordable option with child safety features. The best phones for kids should be durable but easy to use, especially for younger kids.

Best Smartphone

Apple iPhone SE

Apple iPhone SE


  • Inexpensive

  • Good camera

  • So-so battery life

As far as iPhones go, you'll be hard-pressed to find a better value than the iPhone SE (3rd generation), and it's a shockingly fast device that's perfect for kids (with a much friendlier price tag than other iPhones).

Parents will find a reliable device with parental controls. With iOS 16, parents can limit smartphone use in any way they'd like. Features like downtime allow parents to disable the phone. That's perfect for evenings/overnight as well as homework time.

App limits allow parents to restrict a child's use of an app. Just 30 minutes on Facebook a day? No problem. Parents can see how much time is spent on each app, including games, and prevent kids from purchasing new apps or music independently.

Screen Size: 4.7 inches | Resolution: 1334x750 | Processor: A15 Bionic | Camera: 12MP dual rear and 7MP front | Battery: 2018 mAh

Best Android

Google Pixel 6a

Google Pixel 6a.


What We Like
  • Nice camera

  • All-day battery

  • Incredible value

What We Don't Like
  • Bland design

  • No wireless charging

The Google Pixel 6a offers fast performance, an attractive screen, and an all-day battery. The camera is also great, allowing your child to snap great shots with minimal effort. The long-lasting battery will help you keep tabs on your child without worrying about them running out of juice. The phone works on most major carriers and offers 5G connectivity. It's enough to keep your child connected without spending too much.

Screen Size: 6.1 inches | Resolution: 2400x1080 | Processor: Google Tensor | Camera: 12.2MP dual rear and 8MP front | Battery: 4410 mAh

Best Samsung

Samsung Galaxy A32 5G

SAMSUNG Galaxy A32 5G.


  • Long battery life

  • Durable display

  • Low res screen

Samsung's Galaxy A series are solid mid-range phones that are an affordable alternative to the flagship Galaxy S series smartphones. The Galaxy A32 5G is a good choice for kids ready for a smartphone: it has all the essential features, a tough to crack screen, and a friendly price tag.

Using Google's Family Link app (compatible with any Android phone), parents can restrict app usage, limit screen time, block websites, track location, and monitor their child's phones. Parents can also approve and block apps and downloads like ebooks and manage app permissions and account and data settings.

The app also sends notifications when your child arrives or leaves a location, such as school or work.

Screen Size: 6.5 inches | Resolution: 1600x720 | Processor: MediaTek Dimensity 720 5G | Camera: 48MP, 8MP, 5MP, 2MP rear and 13MP front | Battery Life: 5000 mAh


Motorola Moto G7 Play

Motorola Moto G7 Play


What We Like
  • Long battery life

  • Durable and sturdy

  • Affordable

What We Don't Like
  • Camera quality is average

  • Slower performance than other smartphones

Some parents want their children to have the features and convenience of a smartphone but without the high cost of an iPhone or Samsung. Don’t look past the Motorola Moto G7 Play if you want a fantastic entry-level smartphone. This durable phone can withstand the inevitable drops and scratches kids will throw at it, so it’s a reliable choice for clumsy hands. The battery life is also fantastic at up to 40 hours, as is the price point. If your child happens to lose it, it’s not the end of the world. A fingerprint sensor is also available for phone locking. 

It’s compatible with Alexa, too, making it easy for kids to ask for directions or check bus times. While the camera quality isn’t the best, it’s more than good enough for an entry-level phone. However, before purchasing, remember that the G7 is an actual smartphone with access to the internet. Before trusting kids with the responsibility of a smartphone, you might want to establish some boundaries or install a parental control feature. Overall, it’s an excellent first smartphone for kids and teens, who will love having the internet at their fingertips.

Screen Size: 5.7 inches | Resolution: 1512x720 | Processor: 1.8 GHz octa-core | Camera: Dual 13MP and 8MP | Battery Life: 40 hours


Nokia 3310 3G

Nokia 3310 3G


What We Like
  • Awesome battery life

  • Tough design can withstand just about anything

  • Very easy to use

What We Don't Like
  • No wireless connectivity

  • Limited storage space

Many parents are looking for a reliable and easy-to-use phone without internet access—often, kids aren't ready for the responsibilities that come with smartphone ownership. In that case, you can't go wrong with the Nokia 3310 3G. While it may look like the nostalgic "brick phone" that parents used to play Snake on when they were kids, this is the 2021 version, complete with 3G, four vibrant color choices, and a 2MP camera. It's very affordable as well.

It can do everything kids need a phone to do—call, text, play music, and take photos. The Nokia phones have always had standout performance regarding battery life, and the 3310 is no exception. Users can enjoy up to 22 hours of talk time, which you're unlikely to find on any other phone. It's also easy to use and navigate with large buttons that work well for little hands and a center key that doubles as the "select" button. The 3310 doesn't have a massive amount of internal storage space, but that aside, it's one of our top choices for kids.

Screen Size: 2.4 inches | Resolution: 320x240 | Processor: 460MHz | Camera: 2MP | Battery Life: 22 hours

Mini Smartphone

Unihertz Jelly Pro Phone

Unihertz Jelly Pro


What We Like
  • Inexpensive

  • Small and compact

  • Simple design that's easy for kids to navigate

What We Don't Like
  • Shorter battery life

  • Tiny size also makes it easier to lose

The Unihertz Jelly Pro is billed as the smallest 4G-enabled smartphone in the world, but it's also a perfect beginner device. It's slightly larger than a pack of gum, so it's aimed squarely at little hands. Despite its small size, the phone still offers fast performance and everything you'd want in a kid-friendly smartphone. Thanks to 4G support, kids can enjoy quick texting and downloads from major networks. 

It's simple for texts, calls, or downloading apps from the Google Play Store. With the included Bluetooth, you can also pair the phone with wireless headphones. However, it's worth mentioning that the battery life isn't as long as some of the other models reviewed here, so you might find yourself frequently reminding your kids to plug in their chargers before bed.

Screen Size: 2.45 inches | Resolution: 240x432 | Processor: Quad Core 1.1GHz | Camera: Dual 8MP and 2MP | Battery Life: 12 hours

Best Wearable

Gizmo Watch 2

Gizmo Watch 2


What We Like
  • Supports calls and texts for up to ten programmed contacts

  • Water-resistant

  • Bright, simple display screen

What We Don't Like
  • No Wi-Fi connectivity

  • Only compatible with Verizon

If you're looking for a way for your child to keep in touch but don't think they're ready for a phone, the GizmoWatch 2 is a fantastic alternative. The GizmoWatch is a smartwatch linked to Verizon's 4G LTE network, which parents can use to program ten trusted contacts or 20 for messaging. Kids can then call or text their contacts straight from the watch, with the eye able to handle incoming and outgoing calls. There's no Wi-Fi connectivity, but since this watch is aimed at younger kids, that's probably a good thing.

The comfortable and durable watch is available in pink and blue, with a colorful screen that's easy to use. The watch is waterproof, making it great for active kids. Parents will also enjoy the parental controls and safety features, which include a GPS locator and ongoing reminders. These are set up via the companion app parents use on their phones.

As a bonus, the GizmoWatch 2 is also a fitness tracker, where parents can create rewards when kids meet their step goals. Kids have about four days' worth of battery life per charge.

Screen Size: 1.4 inches | Resolution: 300x300 | Processor: Quad-core 1.2GHz | Battery Life: 96 hours

girl with cell phone
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What to Look for in a Kid-Friendly Phone

We’ve reviewed the best phones for kids, considering the price, internet access, size, features, and battery life. Our picks encompass many features and functions based on your budget or how much autonomy you want to give the young ones in your life. Plenty of guides are available on setting effective online boundaries for your kids, and buying one of the best phones for kids can make all the difference when trying to meter their screen time.


Consider a wearable phone explicitly designed for kids if you have a younger child. Since these phones are worn like watches, young children are less likely to lose them. Most wearable phones can only send and receive calls from pre-approved numbers, so you don’t have to worry about whom your kid is talking to when you aren’t around.

Battery Life

A decent battery is critical unless you want to remind your kid to plug their phone in every night. Look for a phone that supports fast charging over USB-C, too—if it’s within the budget. When just a few minutes of charging can add hours of battery life, you never have to worry about being unable to contact your kid.

Feature Phones vs. Smartphones

Feature phones are less expensive than smartphones and can help insulate your kid from problems like cyberbullying via apps. Some feature phones include built-in MP3 players and FM radios if you want your kid to have some entertainment options. If you get a smartphone, familiarize yourself with the available parental controls first.

  • When should kids get their first phone?

    Surveys have shown that average parents are getting kids their first phone around ten years of age. However, many parents prefer to wait until their children are older, such as when they start high school or learn to drive. It’s a personal choice for you and your family to make.

  • Should you give your kids a smartphone?

    This is a personal decision, as internet access means kids can potentially be exposed to about anything. However, kids need to learn how to use the internet safely, so weigh the pros and cons. If you’re going to let your children have internet access on their phones, consider installing parental blockers and regularly talking to them about the importance of internet safety.

  • Can you install parental controls on your child’s phone?

    Many phones designed for children to use come with specific apps and parental controls that you can use to monitor your child’s location, who they communicate with, and what information they can access. If your child has a smartphone, it’s possible to limit access to adult content, but know that children always have a way of finding things they shouldn’t—make sure you talk to your child often about internet safety. You may also want to look at our roundup of the best parental control routers to keep your home network child safe.

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