Amazon last fall expanded its Echo line of smart speakers with the addition of nearly half a dozen new models including the Echo Spot alarm clock. On Wednesday, the e-commerce giant further diversified the category with the introduction of a new Echo Dot specifically for children.
The aptly named Echo Dot Kids Edition is technically no different than the standard Echo Dot introduced in March 2016. What makes it unique, however, is the FreeTime service that comes with the device which consists of parental controls, kid-friendly features and other Alexa-focused capabilities.
Some of the parental controls include the ability to set time limits on device usage and block explicit songs, the option to turn off voice purchasing and the ability to review your kid’s FreeTime on Alexa activity.
FreeTime Unlimited is an ad-free subscription service that grants access to thousands of books, TV shows, movies, educational apps and games, curated specifically for children between the ages of three to 12. It requires a compatible device such as a Fire tablet, Kindle or Amazon phone / tablet.
Echo Dot Kids Edition is available to pre-order from today with your choice of red, blue or green kid-friendly protective case. It’s priced at $79.99 and includes one year of FreeTime Unlimited and a two-year worry-free guarantee (if it gets broken, Amazon will replace it, no questions asked). Do note that after one year, your FreeTime Unlimited subscription will automatically renew each month starting at $2.99 per month unless you cancel.
FreeTime on Alexa will also roll out to existing Echo, Echo Dot and Echo Plus devices via a free, over-the-air update starting May 9.