When should parents buy their children’s first smartphone? The Bremen company Anio says: as late as possible! Instead, the children’s smartwatch Anio 5 – we tested it – should be on the wrist. Parents excited, child disappointed?
Good educational ideas, boring for children
The Anio 5 is a children’s smartwatch for parents who do not want to give their offspring a cell phone for as long as possible and they do this job very well. In children, however, this staid model will not trigger any storms of enthusiasm. Due to the neutral exterior, this watch can also be worn by young people without looking strange or childish. However, we take a critical view of the way to school and the reference to permanent movement tracking.
Children’s smartwatch comparison
With children’s smartwatch, Children’s can explore the world with the confidence that their parents are just a phone call away. You can find out which models are worthwhile in our comparison.
The company Anio from Bremen builds smartwatches for the youngest and the oldest family members. The Anio 5 is a children’s smartwatch that is intended to be an educationally valuable companion in children’s everyday life with safety and without distractions. The goal we have set ourselves is to make a smartphone unnecessary for as long as possible. We’ll see whether this succeeds in our detailed test.
Design and workmanship
There is nothing on the packaging of the Anio 5 to indicate that a product for children is hidden behind the staid white cardboard cover. From the outside, the content could be intended for adults or seniors alike.
The test device’s wristband is made of synthetic fibres, is quite short and does not stretch. The interchangeable bracelets are attached to one side of the watch and the strap is pulled through a guide to create an eyelet for the wrist. A simple mechanism that children can do independently.
The clock is a black rectangle with a touch display. The dimensions of the watch without the bracelet are 44 x 37.8 x 12.8 millimetres. It is light and flat, which means that it should not be a hindrance to everyday life for children. The microphone and loudspeaker are at the bottom of the clock. There are two buttons on the left. It is a red SOS button and a black switch-on and interaction button.
There is nothing wrong with the workmanship of the watch, the transitions between the case and display are fluid. However, one small part that could get into children’s hands is the metal pin that attaches the bracelet to the watch. This just fell against us when changing the bracelet.
It is a commercially available quick release that is easy to replace, but a small part should not be so easily accessible. The watch is recommended on the packaging for children from 6 years of age. This is generally not the age at which children could put things in their mouths and swallow them at random. But as a parent you don’t want to have to constantly replace this pen or an entire bracelet.
Setup and commissioning
A parental cell phone is essential to use the watch. The Anio app must then be installed, which couples the account with the watch in order to enter and synchronize contact-authorized phone numbers, for example. The app is offered free of charge for Android and iOS and can be downloaded from the respective app store.
The setup on the parent device is a bit bumpy and not as self-explanatory as one would like it to be. To use it you have to set up a user account. Then you couple the Anio watch yourself via a QR code on the watch display with the mobile phone and you also have to manually enter the respective contact details of the watch and mobile phone. A time-consuming undertaking, especially if the digital skills are not that well developed.
To set up the clock on our test device (Google Pixel 5, Android 12 ), we had to give the Anio app a lot of permissions. The app has full access to saved files, phone, microphone, camera and location of your smartphone.
For everyday use, however, only the phone, microphone and location are really necessary. The Anio does not have a camera function for sending stored images. The Anio app runs permanently in the background and can display notifications about other applications. This provides an overview and has hardly had any effect on the battery life.
The Anio 5 o’clock requires a nano-SIM card with its own telephone number with a telephone and SMS flat rate. In addition, at least 500 megabytes of mobile data volume per month are absolutely essential. Functions
The Anio 5 children’s smartwatch cannot be used separately from the Anio app for parents. In order to give a full impression of the functions in the everyday context of use, we have summarized our experiences with the product in sub-items.
Operation of the app and the clock
The interface of the watch is operated quite simply via the touch display. To wake up the display, the power button is pressed and the clock face appears. You can switch through the menus by swiping horizontally and confirming with a short tap in the middle. There is no back button on the display, the power button has to be pressed every time.
The app, on the other hand, is just as colourful as the packaging. Here, however, the simple design helps with the overview, because the app appears like a page from a notepad and the individual menus are divided into small circles with labels. Selectable elements are well separated and the app is also easy to use for inexperienced users.