Obviously, my son is way too young to have a phone or a device to communicate with, but if he were old enough (let’s say 5-12), I’d consider getting a Relay to communicate with him for a number of reasons.

The Relay is a one-touch communication cellphone alternative that makes it easy to talk to kids from a free app on your smartphone. It comes with built-in parental controls and GPS tracking. To use it, your child simply pushes the button and speaks into the device as they would a walkie-talkie, and the message is sent to your cell phone or another Relay. It’s also screen-free, so it’s not for playing video games, chatting with friends on social, texting, or watching videos.

What it is for—and what it’s perfect for—is keeping families connected without the unwanted side effects of a smartphone and smartphone stresses (like worries about breaking or losing them), and it’s only $49 and available on Amazon or at Target. The Relay is water-resistant and uses a secure, nationwide 4G LTE network as well as Wi-Fi. It comes with a magnetic charging cable, a USB power adapter, a quick start guide, and a one-year product warranty. Monthly service is $9.99 per Relay.


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