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LeapFrog and VTech bring out tablets for kids

VTech InnoPad

VTech InnoPad Credit: VTech

Apple's iPad and Motorola Xoom are probably the coolest gadgets out there, but with $600 plus  pricetags, parents cringe when their little ones want to play like daddy and mommy.  But now, two toy companies are  introducing tablets designed specifically for kids.

LeapFrog's $99.99 LeapPad Explorer and VTech's $79.99 InnoPad hope to capitalize on the mobile computing craze with their own kid-sized tablets.

Each device features a five-inch touch screen, a tilt-sensor, a headphone jack and a user interface similar to that of the iPad or Android tablets.

Although similar to their adult counterparts, both devices are ruggedly built with a strong plastic casing meant to withstand the perils of spilled juice, table crumbs and impromptu wresting matches of those age 4 and up.

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The LeapPad comes preloaded with  65 learning apps that touch on vocabulary, math and reading comprehension. When a kid needs a break from all these cram sessions, the LeapPad Explorer also comes with games and animated stories.

No word yet on what powers the LeapPad, but it does come with a microphone, camera and video recorder. The LeapPad also connects to LeapFrog's online store via USB cable to allow parents to share the projects the kids have done on the LeapPad Explorer online and to download new games and apps starting at $7.50.

The InnoPad doesn’t have a built-in camera or microphone, but it does have a USB connection, SD card support, and a kickstand that swivels to allow it to become a digital photo frame. The InnoPad also has its own line up of books and games.

LeapPad Explorer will be out in the summer, and VTech's InnoPad is scheduled for the fall.

Credit: Top, V-Tech InnoPad, left LeapFrog LeapPad

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