I recently tried out KidZui – the internet browser for kids.
My first impression was, “Holy crap this page is loud.” (Visually)
Actually, the initial screen is a welcome dialog overlaying the home page. The browser runs full screen with no menu bar visible on my mac. I have two monitors and the secondary monitor is blacked out when KidZui runs.
The “Play Now” button is a tip off that this browser is exclusively for entertainment. No dictionary links, no Math practice, no encyclopedic reference sites allowed. Only fun.
The Parent button takes you to the parent options, which are limited to receiving usage reports, targeting the material, starting KidZui at startup and requiring a password to exit KidZui.
OK, this is an entertainment browser designed to keep kids away from the real computer and all it’s awesome power. You can have KidZui launch at startup, cover the desktop and demand a password to exit. This is the kind of browser you might want if you, say, ran a daycare or after school program and wanted the kids to have access to a browser with controlled content. Or maybe you wanted the family machine to be kid safe at start-up.
OK, I can appreciate that.
The experience is so gaudy and noisy though. It’s like taking the internet an reducing it to Saturday morning cartoons and commercials. Most of the content is really adver-content. The games and clips are the kinds with commercial product tie-ins. You know, Lego, Club Penguin, Webkinz…
It has it’s place.