The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 Lite is one of the best cheap tablets that you can buy, especially if you're looking for a network connection on one of the nationwide cellular networks. Today, AT&T is launching a kids bundle with a connected version of the tablet, including a rugged cover, for around $250, a $50 premium over the basic tablet.
That premium gets you the case you see here, as well as some preloaded software to make setting up Samsung Kids easier. Samsung Kids is an interface that puts strict limits on what your children can do with the tablet. It's great for very young kids, but tweens and older will find it a bit too childish.
Otherwise, there are no differences between the Galaxy Tab A7 Lite Kids and the normal tablet. Even the tablet color is the same under that bright, rubbery cover. This still represents a fine deal, as kid-friendly rugged tablet covers can cost up to $50 or more, so the premium is not excessive.
If you want to chop up your payments, AT&T will let qualified buyers finance the tablet at 0% interest over three years. You can pay for this tablet until your two-year-old turns five at a rate of $7 a month. Or you can just buy it for $250. The AT&T service plan is extra.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab A7 Lite has an 8.7-inch touchscreen with a 1340 x 800-pixel resolution. It has a microSD card slot, in addition to the 32GB of onboard storage. There's a welcome headphone port, so you can plug in a cheap pair of kid-friendly headphones if you don't want to hear all of the Toca Boca from the backseat.
We haven't had time to review the Galaxy Tab A7 Lite, but we're very familiar with Samsung tablets, and this is an easy one to recommend. Samsung Android tablets use a version of its One UI, and they can run almost any Android app from the Google Play Store.
Amazon Fire tablets, on the other hand, look like a great cheap option, but those are much more limited in the software they can run. Amazon tablets cannot run any Google apps or use the Google Play Store. You still get apps for all of your favorite streaming services, but the Galaxy Tab A7 Lite will have a much larger library of apps and games available for you and your child.
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Phil Berne is a preeminent voice in consumer electronics reviews, having reviewed his first device (the Sony D-EJ01 Discman) more than 20 years ago for eTown.com. He has been writing about phones and mobile technology, since before the iPhone, for a variety of sites including PCMag, infoSync, PhoneScoop, and Slashgear. He holds an M.A. in Cultural Theory from Carnegie Mellon University.
Phil was the internal reviewer for Samsung Mobile, writing opinions and review predictions about top secret new devices months before launch. He left in 2017. He worked at an Apple Store near Boston, MA, at the height of iPod popularity. He has been a High School English teacher at Title I schools, and is a certified Lifeguard. His passion is smartphones and wearables, and he is sure that the next big thing will be phones we wear on our faces.