Tuesday, January 16, 2018
Business

Tablet makers target kids

Tablet manufacturers are looking for new ways to entice children who have become accustomed to using their parents' smartphones, iPads and Kindles. New child-friendly tablets come equipped with camcorders and Wi-Fi connections, even social-networking capabilities.

Mainstream tech brands are also increasingly joining the fray. Samsung became the latest entrant with the release of its Galaxy Tab 3 Kids. But analysts say no obvious favorite has emerged.

"It's still an open field — nobody has dominated it yet," said Sean McGowan, an analyst for Needham & Co. "LeapFrog has done a good job, but there are also a ton of kids playing with iPads. There is no runaway winner."

For companies such as Toys "R" Us, which has weathered nearly two years of dwindling profits, children's tablets — some of which cost more than $200 — might hold the key to a profitable holiday season. To lure young shoppers, the chain has created tablet-testing areas in each of its stores, allowing children to try out nearly 30 devices, including the company's Tabeo e2.

Parents say child-friendly tablets, which often come equipped with games and parental controls, offer a lower-priced alternative to traditional tablets. But bright pink and purple gadgets can also be quickly outgrown.

Forty-percent of families with children younger than 8 own tablets, a fivefold increase from 2011, according to Common Sense Media, a San Francisco-based family advocacy organization. And as tablet ownership has risen, so has usage by young children. Among 2-year-olds, 38 percent have used mobile devices, up from 10 percent two years ago.

That shift, experts say, comes with its own challenges. The American Academy of Pediatrics discourages any screen time for those younger than 2. Older children, the organization says, should be limited to less than two hours of daily TV, tablet and computer use.

Comments

Pinellas is at the center of a rise in Florida flu outbreaks

By JUSTINE GRIFFINTimes Staff Writer Feeling a little sniffly or scratchy or stuffed up? It may be the flu, and you don’t want to wait around to see a doctor this year. This is not the time to write off flu-like symptoms, Tampa Bay area health offici...
Updated: 11 minutes ago
Raymond James advice for small to mid-sized companies about activist shareholders? Prepare and listen

Raymond James advice for small to mid-sized companies about activist shareholders? Prepare and listen

Shareholder fights between activist investors and publicly traded companies are getting nastier, especially in some industries, and a lot of them don’t involve corporate giants like General Motors and Procter & Gamble.In 2015, according to Raymond Ja...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Dow bursts through 26,000 in record seven trading days

Dow bursts through 26,000 in record seven trading days

The Dow Jones industrial average blew past 26,000 Tuesday for the first time ever, coming only a week after hitting 25,000 and showing further evidence that the long-running bull market is alive and well."There are several reasons for markets to melt...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Arizona-based AFI Mortgage opens St. Petersburg branch

Arizona-based AFI Mortgage opens St. Petersburg branch

Times StaffAFI Mortgage, a subsidiary of an Arizona-based bank, is opening its first Florida locations in St. Petersburg and Lakeland. Its parent company, AmeriFirst Financial Inc., specializes in mortgages. "This Florida team is innovative, knowledg...
Updated: 3 hours ago
St. Petersburg’s apartment boom is spreading west

St. Petersburg’s apartment boom is spreading west

By SUSAN TAYLOR MARTINTimes Senior CorrespondentST. PETERSBURG — Still more apartments are coming to St. Petersburg, this time to the Edge and Grand Central Districts just west of downtown.The new projects, all by out-of-state developers, will add mo...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

Some fear Spa Beach billowing net sculpture could catch birds and storms

By WAVENEY ANN MOORETimes Staff WriterST. PETERSBURG — International artist Janet Echelman may have fulfilled her $75,000 feasibility contract with the city and previewed her billowing, parasol-inspired sculpture for Spa Beach, but for some, key ques...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

Pasco plans industrial site on utility property

DADE CITY – Commissioner Jack Mariano remembers the message from economist William Fruth.Just seven months after Mariano joined the commission in 2004, Fruth, of Palm City, told the county’s elected and appointed officials that Pasco should explore d...
Published: 01/16/18
Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

Help wanted: Seminole Hard Rock in Tampa has 250 jobs to fill

TAMPA — Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino is holding a hiring event next week to fill more than 250 positions. The event will take place in the Hard Rock Cafe from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 24. Available positions include culinary, beverage, hotel, spa, ...
Published: 01/16/18
Modern game room fosters family approach

Modern game room fosters family approach

SPRING HILL – While no board games are evident at NeverBoard Gaming Community, the strategy and competitiveness of game playing are in full force, with the latest digital hardware modernizing the pursuit.The NeverBoard shop, a venue for video gaming ...
Published: 01/16/18

Pasco Business Digest for Jan. 19

Business digestBrieflyBELLE AME GIVES BACK: Belle Ame Day Spa & Salon, 21758 State Road 54, Lutz, announces fundraising opportunities for local civic groups or nonprofit organizations each month. The monthly featured group will organize between eight...
Published: 01/16/18