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Cellphone Parenting

What's the best cell phone for kids?

Honestly, the best cell phone for kids is one they use responsibly and respectfully, in accordance with the guidelines you've discussed. Any phone could fit this description. But, kids being kids -- and the rapid pace of technology -- make this ideal hard to achieve. That's where devices specifically designed for kids can make boundary-setting easier, because they have limited options.

For younger kids, consider bare-bones phones with only the features they need to stay in touch with you. As kids get older, they'll be interested in fuller-featured phones with bells and whistles. A good compromise is a device you can customize to suit everyone's needs and wants. If you're going to give kids a smartphone, turn off some of the advanced features (downloading apps, for example) until they've demonstrated responsible ownership.

Here are some ideas for kids' cell phones:

Young kids: Look for phones with very simple controls, big buttons, and extremely limited features. Phones that only make calls to a short list of contacts and that have no games, no Web access, and no camera are good choices. Consider the Sprint WeGo, the Firefly, or the FiliP 2, a watch that makes calls to an abbreviated contact list and receives -- but can't send -- texts.

Tweens: Phones that look grown-up but offer limited features or that come with a service that allows you to customize options are good choices for older kids. Take a look at the Kurio phone, the Kajeet service, the Just5, or the TracFone, which can't download apps. 

Does your kid have a special kid phone?

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Teen, 14 years old written by Pastabikes

I have only just got a phone at 14 so from my small experience midrange phones are the best. I use a Huawei p smart 2019 which gets the job done with a tiny price of £2.50 a month.
Teen, 14 years old written by iwonderwho

I have an Iphone 11 pro, but it wasn't like my parents bought it for me. I had to find a way to make money, save up, and earn it myself. If you're kid wants a specific phone, make them work for it. My parents telling me to work for a phone really helped me growing up because I was in that mindset that nothing is given for free. You have to work for what you want. In my opinion, just giving a kid a phone is spoiling them. Not everyone would agree with me, but it's how my parents taught me and I really appreciate that.
Kid, 11 years old

I'm scrolling through these comments and the majority of the kids and teens are complaining about their lack of phone or their terrible iPod. I'm just a kid, but I'm just saying, Parents. If your child wants a phone sooooo bad, tell them to get it themselves!! I'm currently saving up for a iPhone Xr. Kids, I know how the struggle for phones feels but if you really wanted it, you'd buy it yourselves.
Adult written by MillsW

Ok I’ve seen some comments and you should get ur child a phone most kids walk home by there selves and in Chicago Indiana New York California people are kidnapping so it would be good so you know there safe I’m not a big fan of android but if u have the money the best iPhone for your kids around this time of year would be a IPhone 8/8 plus, IPhone X, IPhone XR.
Kid, 12 years old

I have been asking my mom for a phone since I was 11 but she says no. I do a lot of sports and next year I'll be in middle school so I will need a phone. I'm not asking for the freaking iPhone 11 but maybe the 7? I don't want to sound greedy but I do need one. All of my friends have a phone and I'm the only one that doesn't, so when they spend the night or I come over they're always on their phone! It sucks! My mom is always saying that I can get a phone when I'm old enough to work, that's in 4 years! Does anyone have advice to convince her?
Kid, 11 years old

Maybe say that you'll buy it? If you don't want to spend a lot of money on it or youre worried you'll take too long, get one like the iPhone 8. Its around 250 dollars and still good. If you have a allowance or you get some money from your birthday, save most of that, and you might have enough to buy it!
Adult written by MillsW

Hey just be good try to do a reverse so when ur mom or dad are around say u don’t want a phone because ur not responsible then they might give you one to test out if you are or not.
Teen, 13 years old written by Geez_Dude

What type of smartphone is the best for kids? The same brand/type you have so its easier to manage. No, I'm not saying get the latest iphone for your child because you have one, No. what I mean by type is brand (E/G: samsung, apple), so If you have the latest iphone, you don't have to settle on the exact phone you have, for another older/inexpensive iphone will due. Personally though, I need advice. My dad (iphone 6 plus user), doesn't care what phone I get. My mom however, (iphone xs max user) says that kids do not need iphones and cheap androids will due. In my experience, cheap androids fail after one year and thats why I currently have my dad's old iphone 5s, which is like 6 years old already and dying, so I am in the market for a new phone. I am willing to spend my money on one, (and my mom knows that) but my mom is still convinced I don't need an iphone. How do I convince her that I need an iphone? Please leave advice!
Kid, 12 years old

I guess, the only way to convince your mother that you need an iPhone and not an Android is: 1. Let her know all the essential reasons someone your age needs a cell phone. Explain that you would need to be able to call or video call her at any time for emergencies and for other reasons (based on your context). 2. Explain to her how bad Androids are and that iPhones are the only practical choice. I know why you would want an iPhone, because everyone has one nowadays and its the brand Apple, but I just don't think you have done quite enough research into Android phones, because there are many old AND new Android devices that are brilliant and are sold for a rock bottom prices (that almost sound too good to be true). Examples include the Samsung galaxy note 3, which beats most mid-range phones today, or the Motorola E6 plus. However, if you must have an iPhone, Apple will probably be releasing their more affordable iPhone SE 2. I am also an iPhone 5s user and my parents were also reluctant to hand me a phone, so I know what it is like. I do encourage you to discover that Androids can be good too, and any of the ones that I mentioned above can all be practical choices.
Kid, 11 years old

I'm 11 ( as stated) I am starting Middle School next year. At the moment, I don't have a "cool" iPhone or Samsung, just a small phone that allows me to function. Next year, I would LIKE to have a new phone. Not at iPhone 11, not a Samsung Galaxy s10, just something other than my current phone. If I don't get a new phone, I'm fine. I personally think that 4th grade-6th grade would be good to discuss phones with your kid. When I was... I think 7, my mom gave me her old phone. No SIM, but I could play games. So I have had phones that are just for games, social media etc. But, next year, I am going to be walking home. So the phone will be like anyone else's... But for communication with my parents/family members. So, in conclusion... Your kid doesn't NEED an iPhone 11, but maybe you and he/she should start discussing phones, so they have control on their amount of time on it.
Teen, 13 years old written by I_cant_sleep

Alright, after reading some thoughts, I can see some of you aren't getting the point of the question . The question asked is "what's the best cell phone for kids?" and y'all are answering it like "what age should kids get a cell phone". There is a separate page for answering that question and sharing thoughts on it. Anyway, I am 13 years old, and I have a Samsung Galaxy A10s. It's very good for kids, it has very simple controls, it's dual sim, excellent camera and storage, and it's under $200 where I live. I really suggest getting your kids phone from the Samsung Galaxy A series. They are very fast and there are no confusing controls required.
Teen, 14 years old written by Andriodapple

I got Samsung’s newest flagship phone, the S10 for a Christmas 2019 gift because it was on sale at Costco for 420 USD and I gave all A’s. I wouldn’t recommend this phone for kids who just need it for communications. The S10 is good for many reasons. First, All day battery life. I use my phone a lot and the battery life helps. Second, the camera is the best I seen compared to other flagships. This phone can record 4K 60 fps videos and as ma y other useful features. Third, charging. I can charging my phone from 0-100% in less than two hours. You can also use wireless PowerShare for other devices. Fourth, gaming. I play video games a lot. Running 60 frames helps. It makes the game much smoother. Fifth, storage. The S10 series can have up to 1 terabyte of storage and expandable memory. I recommend this phone for people who do school work, gaming, or photography. I rather have this phone than the iPhone 11 Pro Max because camera, storage, battery, and charging is better in an S10. The regular price for S10e is750, S10 is 900, and S10+ is 1000. I would recommend the S10 5G because I think kids having 5G network is unnecessary.
Adult written by TRUE-Talk

Wow, there are a massive amount of comments from little kids on a “Parent’s & Advocates“ website. It’s funny because ALL of them say they should have cell phones! Lol, so weird. They try every excuse/manipulation possible to get what they “want” while they’re too immature to know what they actually “need”. The most entitled child posting here so far is the Fictional “bullying” for not having the iPhone 11 Pro like their friends!! Sorry to burst your bubble children but these comments are meant for you to just talk then the data is passed/sold off for other statistics! Responsible parents make all decisions by what is best for their kids, “IN THEIR OPINIONS” not a random website’s comments section. Did you honestly believe adults are reading your comments for parenting advice?? *Stay in school*
Kid, 11 years old

I am soon turning 12 and i think that that’s when we should get a smartphone. I mean almost everyone has got an iPhone in my class and I’ve got a nokia with buttons. It’s really uncomfortable all the time and i can’t wait for my parents to decide that it’s time to get me a smartphone. I hope they buy me one when i turn 12. All sites say that you should buy your kid a tracked, with no internet and with buttons cell phone when they are tweens but they are wrong. I hope i helped.
Kid, 11 years old

Ok. I am a 11 year old I know. But for me, I think I actually have a solid reason to have a phone. All of my friends have iPhones with their unlimited plans and they don’t actually need it. I have a classmate that has the iPhone 11 Pro and she walks home with her mom. I need a phone. I use public transit to get from school to home. Also, I live in New York City so I live in an apartment. The intercom system is trash and it never works. Half of the time, I have to waste a half hour until a person opens the door OR YOU CAN GET ME A PHONE SO YOU CAN OPEN THE DOOR. I am a heavy user no gonna lie. But, as I am in a gifted class. I ain’t got no time for games. Come on. My parents think I’m spoilt because I have a Nintendo Switch and a iPad WHICH I DO NOT HAVE ANY GAMES ON I USE IT FOR SCHOOL AND AS MY PERSONAL COMPUTER. Overall, I don’t have anything nice. If I did I would have it taken away or I can’t even use it for what I want. Parents, I know I’m a child, but please give your children some freedom. Do not go overboard and buy them everything they want. Make sure it is needed and if your child behaves well then reward them. My parent have a bad habit of not rewarding or congratulating me when I do good on a test or an exam. And I’m telling thats soul crushing. After working hard and getting it reward them or at least be proud. I know there is a lot of unneeded words here. But, my main point is to give your child a smartphone as they will be happy about it. Also, about the bullying if you don’t have a iPhone or a phone is just stupid. nIf you don’t want your child to be bullied or feel worthless please give them a phone.
Teen, 13 years old written by sekan

I agree with the previous statement. You can get you’re child a fancier phone or a less new phone AS LONG as you know they have worked for it and are currently still working hard. If you’re child can prove that he/she deserves a phone with fancier features, go ahead and get one. If you’re child can’t prove themselves, they may not be deserving of a phone with so many bells and whistles. Things that kids can prove themselves on are grades, attitudes, and completion of chores.
Kid, 9 years old

I'm very sad that adults think kids are this irresponsible that they can't even download apps. Some might be, but most aren't. When I was 6, my mom gave me a Nokia. I was really happy because I have never had a cell phone. I was going to school that year, so my mom gave it to me to contact her. When I was 7, my parents got me a smartphone, and a couple of months ago, they bought me a new phone. For the young kids thing, I think a Nokia would be fine, it actually has games! But it doesn't have internet. I don't know why you wouldn't want your child to not be able to send texts. They're literally the same as calling them.
Adult written by Mills0015

I gave my 13 year old an iPhone XR and I am still not sure if she is in the right age to own such a big device and of she is responsible enough. She is pretty lazy and doesn’t do her chores properly.
Teen, 13 years old written by Fveloz251

Okay so I am a thirteen year old. The issue no one is talking about is that kids get bullied for not have iPhones.
Teen, 17 years old written by 123456ABCD

I am a tween and I have limited access to a lot of things. I have an OPPO phone, I'm allowed 1 social media account and games.. so on so on.
Kid, 11 years old

Guys, I dont want to be mean, but all of these comments is bullcrap. I am turning 12 and i have an iphone 7 and i had other phones before that. I was 4 when i got my first phone, and I was hardly on it. I got my brother an iPhone 5s for christmas and he isnt on it a lot. Yalls kids have problems if they are on phones so much. and if you cant decide what phone to get them just get them like a LG or an iPhone 4s or something like
Teen, 14 years old written by aatmajab13

I am 15 and I still don't have a phone.All of my friends have one except me. Whenever I ask for a phone , my parents just blow off the topic and doesn't listen to me. They think that phone is a distraction and I won't be getting higher grades if they buy me one. But we all need a phone for various purposes, even for school. Guys, do u think it's right? Please reply
Teen, 13 years old written by uniqueteen13464

GET YOUR KID A PHONE NOW PLEASE!!! My parents STILL have not given me or my brother a phone, and we are 13 and 11. My other brother got a phone when he was 14!! Not acceptable. DO NOT HOLD BACK. GET THEM A PHONE NOW. When I say a phone, I mean an iPhone, not a flip phone. Those are lame. (No offense if you have one). Anyways, I'm going to go watch AGT, so while I do that, you get your kid a phone. Give me an iPhone OR DEATH!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you, I'm off to watch Darci Lynne, Shin Lim, The Clairvoyants, and many more. Humph. -saavi the uniquester
Adult written by Kara.e

My eldest daughter is 13, and owns a iPhone 7+. She has been asking me to buy her the iPhone XS Max. I think that she is responsible enough to own a expensive phone, but I don't think she needs one as my husband and I are still using the 6s and the 5se respectively. Any advice?
Teen, 15 years old written by AgentCarter2015

Hi Kara, in my opinion, even though your daughter is 13, and is responsible, I do not think you should purchase her the iPhone XS Max. If I was 13 and got brought the latest model, I would be called spoilt! I mean at the end of your day, it is your choice but maybe give her an iPhone 4 or 5. Yes them iPhones are one of the older phones but it will give her a chance to lear more about responsibility. If you brought her the latest model, she would think that you would keep buying her more of the latest gadgets!
Adult written by CatMath

Hi Kara.e. If you feel your daughter can responsibly handle a more expensive phone, however you do not feel that the expense is reasonable for your family, then let her know. Just because "we want" does not mean "we get". Discuss "why" the iPhone XS Max is important. What does it do that the current phone does not? If she feels strongly about it, then she can think of ways to earn the money to afford it. Please have her research the initial cost plus any service plan costs that you BOTH agree to.
Teen, 13 years old written by Intelligent_Bobcat

If you are choosing to keep the older phones, because you do not care to have a newer one, don't hold your children back from having a newer phone. Since she has a 7 plus, and wants and XS MAX, an 8 plus would be a good middle range option. Or, you could by her an XR. The XR still has the technological capabilities of the XS MAX, it would also be a good choice. It also has the digital button. (XR has no physical notch, integrated into screen). The XR has a smaller footprint and cost, retailing for only $799, compared to the XS MAX at $1099.
Teen, 13 years old written by Lauren123894

Personally I am 13 and I think that the condition of the phone is important before you buy a new phone. If the screen is completely demolished then maybe consider, but if the phone is in perfect condition I think you could wait a little longer. Also, while the type of phone you have as an adult doesn’t matter it does matter more as a minor for many reasons; It’s a popularity standard, there friends have new ones, they want people to view them as responsible and “cool” because they have a new phone! Speaking of responisble, You should watch how she treats her phone. If she throws it across the room onto a couch... maybe you should wait until she is more gentle, but if she is carful with it and she doesn’t drop it often then it shows she is responsible. I hope that I maybe helped decide whether or not she should have the phone or not. -Lauren
Adult written by Parent of a 13 ...

My son is 13 years old i am letting him use a safe link phone and he does not follow the simple rule of call or txt when you get home since the school does not allow phones in the classroom. it is good if you are working for your teen to have a basic phone so they can let you know they are safe if they want internet that is what a laptop is for. Phones are expensive and hard to afford a plan so maybe a tracphone for $20 a month should be good enough for a teenager.
Teen, 14 years old written by ichbineinkartoffel

I am currently a high schoolers and teachers EXPECT you to have a phone when you need to communicate, take pictures of notes, etc. I'm so fed up with not having a phone. I am missing out on chats for extra curricular activities because I don't have a phone. Please get your teen a phone, they need it.
Teen, 13 years old written by Mickey_Mouse

That is so so true I didn't have a phone for 2 months and I could find the notes that people send around on whatsapp or the homework because u have to tack pictures of that from the IWB in class
Teen, 13 years old written by ddesai1630

I think kids SHOULD get phones, when they r in fifth grade. Flip phones are lame, and this is the 21st century. parents cant just use "in the old days we survived without cell phones" excuse to get out of it. my friends lose their phones only sometimes, and they always find it anyways. were teens now, and were not dumb. we should be able to get a smart phone with the FULL deal: texting, calling, social media, internet access, etc.
Adult written by Xzanth

Actually, you kids ARE dumb and do not need access to full features of a phone. Sorry but a 12 year old should be worried about focus not what some idiot said on Twitter.
Teen, 13 years old written by Jfilako

It really depends what kids are dumb there are plenty of really smart kids who deserve to have all access, the trouble tends to come with giving the kids who don't know how deal/how to let go if something is said it tends the ones who are smart who tend to blow it off and don't give it the time of day, so if you think your kid is smart enough to know its just someone's opinion and its not the of the world, but I think all kids deserve a phone, most of the bullying in middle school comes from being laughed at for not having one and trust me to know i don't have a phone some grades suffer from that like classes in music, in our orchestra we have to send in videos of us playing a practice exercise and its hard to record those videos when your parent uses the phone for stuff they're doing and you have to wait forever for a chance to use it. and sadly genrally lots of teachers just assume you have a phone and assign stuff digitally. its not worth put your child through the wringer with make them deal all of this stuff rather than just getting them one and having limitations on depending on how they react to stuff like that.
Kid, 11 years old

I don't think that kids 9 and under should have a phone like a IPhone 9 because the way the world is these days. My school went under lockdown because a kid threatened to bring a gun to school. I have an LG which I think is good for a 11 year old. I just think people need to be more aware of what people are posting. Cause I don't think posting born to kill without anything being done is smart. I don't understand why I can't have Facebook or Instagram because the smarter young kids could help stop all these school shootings and massacres. I just think as a society we should all be more aware of what people are posting and saying. For example at my school me and a couple of my classmates said what is one thing you wish you can do without getting in trouble and a kid said kill all of you on this paper. He was suspended 9 times at his old school without getting expelled and 7 at ours without getting expelled. I also think the parents should step up their game so kids don't end up hurting others or themselves. They should start caring.
Teen, 13 years old written by jamespuzzle

I don't think kids should have an iPhone 9, not because they're too powerful, but because they don't exist.
Kid, 12 years old

The iPhone 9 will probably come out this year or very early next year as the iPhone SE 2 in some markets, just so you know.
Parent of a 2 and 10-year-old written by Rachel N.

Personally, I'm so on the fence about getting my 10 year old a phone next school year. She is, of course, begging, because she wants to text her friends (who are also still using their mom's phones to text, just like my daughter currently is). But, she's about to start up at a school pretty far from home, so I'm partially considering the idea about a phone. I love the tracking option on the GizmoGadget watch, and how it straps onto her body, but I can't figure out if it can do texting. A dumb phone is also nice, because we won't have to pay the extra $40-a-month for the mandatory data plan Verizon requires with a smart phone. But otherwise, I'm considering a "dumb phone" because I don't want the distraction or danger of a smart phone (unsupervised internet access with all of the cyber bullying and predators online? and games during school? no thanks!) But I also don't want to spend much because the chances of my child losing the phone are 95%, because she keeps losing her glasses, coat, lunch box, homework, and pretty much everything else. Of course, since my daughter is just wanting the phone for texting, I'm also considering just getting her a Google Voice account and she can text on a PC or maybe with an iPod touch on the school's or our home wifi (except there's my fear of loss or damage to such a device). I'm still a bit amazed by this seemingly common expectation that kids have phones. How did we ever survive in the 80s and 90s without cell phones?! LOL But at the same time, they took away all the pay phones, so it's a little harder to just up and call your parents now. You actually have to, you know, ask the school office, your friends parents, or go into a business and ask to use their phone. Oh man, such a crazy idea! ;-) (Totally not judging anyone, as every kid and every family is different, but I'm just still shocked that the tone of articles like this one are such that it's like there's no other reality but for kids to have cell phones.) On the other hand, my husband is thinking we should get her a dumb phone "for emergencies." It's definitely convenient both for the kid to be able to call, and for the parents to be able to call the kids. I'll give you that. :-)
Teen, 13 years old written by Jfilako

I would definitely NOT recommend iPods they are horrible and break so easily they are 100% a waste of money until they're remade I have had 2 and both broke easily so if your looking to have communication but don't want to lose control or for it to break get your child an iPhone SE you have apps like screen time built-in the SE doesn't break easily if you put in otter box case they are very inexpensive has a built-in tracker and if your child loses it there is a icloud website that will make the phone ring no stop until someone finds it
Teen, 13 years old written by ddesai1630

ur daughter should get a cell so she can text her friends and its really hard to lose a device. kids these days LOVE their devices. i brougt my tablet to school and i never ONCE lost it, and i lose things all the time. plus, there r these binders that can be used as a shoulder bag and r zipped up. they have a bunch of pockets, and one for a calculator (and ur daughter could use it for a phone pocket). also, if she was texting during school, shed get in trouble, cuz teachers r smart about that. trust me, at my school, kids HAVE tried, and they always get caught. and even if she doesnt get caught, itl show in her grades that she hasnt been focusing 100% on her studies
Adult written by Xzanth

It's you're. Just saying. It looks like you need to put your phone down, work on your grammar and punctuation, because talking like that makes you look stupid.
Parent of a 2 and 10-year-old written by Rachel N.

PC Mag has a good article with information about current phones for kids:
Teen, 16 years old written by Hulksmash322

Here's the problem, I'm a 16 year old myself, and all of you that are trashing this article, this wasn't for you. My High School went into a code red today because there was someone around the school with a gun. That's just the age that we're living in nowadays, sad but true. This article is for someone like my mom who is wondering what kind of phone to get my 5 year old brother because she doesn't want him trapped in a room for an hour not knowing if he's safe. Some kids don't have the capacity to handle a smarter phone without getting distracted by all of the games in class or becoming indifferent to what is going on around them. Phones today are very different from the ones from when I was a kid. I got my baby brother an ipod one Christmas and I honestly wish I hadn't. He doesn't get to experience family game nights or having fun because he's too trapped in his phone. It's a big problem these days. Some kids only need something simple to get in contact with their parents in times of trouble. I'm not saying that kids don't need phones at all because it has certainly become a large part of culture, but a kid doesn't need to have an iPhone 10 or galaxy s9 at 5 and 6 years old.
Teen, 15 years old written by Ari A.

This is so mean! I first got a phone when I was 9 because I was responsible. My parents never had an issue with me having a phone. This is so strict.
Kid, 11 years old

We aren't idiots, we don't need a stupid phone that can't download apps or have Internet access.
Adult written by Laurel V.

I would like to see more answers to the question posed by the article- “does your kid have a special kid phone?” I would also like the article to have a date posted. Most of the phones listed here are no longer available, the others are $200. My hunt for a kid friendly phone continues.
Parent written by Robyn F.

When I bought phones for both of my children, I had no clue that you could get these 'child safe' phones to help protect your children while they're on the internet. However, the main concern for me when buying my children phones were if they would be able to look after the phone, and not loose it, or have it forcefully taken from them. I easily solved this problem by purchasing I watched for both of them, so they would be able to track their devices.I bought the Iphone 5s for my eldest child when she was 8, when she started asking for one. She is now currently using the Iphone 7 plus, as the 5s Does not have a AR feature with her favourite game. However, my younger child has never asked me for their own phone, and seemed content with a Ipad, and I had to transition him into using a Iphone 7 this year. Even though I have bought both my children mobile phones before the age most children have them, I feel that I have made the right choice getting them, as the technology is getting more and more advanced with every new product released, and as the next generation, our children need to keep up this. If you a concerned about your child misusing their phone, I suggest buying them a Ipod/Ipad for personal use at a earlier age, and wait until you feel they are responsible enough, before buying a proper phone for them, so they are able to make their own way in the digital world.
Teen, 16 years old written by Heyhaley

My personal take on this is that if children have a decent reason on why they should get a phone and you have a trusting relationship with your child, then look into getting them a phone. I still don't have my own phone and I'm 16 years old. I use an ipod that I got when I was in the seventh grade. I think that if your child is asking for Internet access not a phone, then look into getting them a tablet or an ipod because they would have Internet access without the monthly bill of a phone. I think that if your child is asking for a phone under the age of 12 you might want to askip yourself, "why does my child need a phone? Who do they have to call? What kind of apps will they have access to? Am I ready for the cost of one? What will they be doing on it?" To me these are valid questions worth taking the time to answer. Children will need a phone eventually but if they don't have a good reason why they want and/or need one, does your kid really need a phone then?
Teen, 15 years old written by mkv2326

I'd definitely recommend getting your child a phone between age 12 and the beginning of high school. By that time (and sometimes even earlier) it becomes a norm that the kid owns a phone, so technology is used more often in class and for extracurricular activities.
Teen, 14 years old written by scholarlyleopard

Here's my weigh in: It depends on the age of the child. Personally, I agree with what it says for young kids and tweens. I didn't get a phone until I was a month from turning 13 -- it was a Christmas gift. Until then, I didn't care! It will not affect your child in school that much. If you have a computer, there are many more apps you can look at for them to keep in touch with friends. While there were a few girls that had phones, and at the time I did feel jealous, I realize now how unnecessary it would have been, and I'm grateful I didn't get one sooner. Perhaps you could look into an iPod or Tablet instead of a phone at all? And iPod worked especially well for my family -- the oldest generation they were selling was affordable and hooked up to the internet, so I could text my mom from school about me walking home, and if you have an iPhone, you can make "FaceTime Audio Calls" -- essentially just a phone call, but minus the extra to pay for the service, lol. I'd say 13 is the perfect age to have a smartphone, before that, it's not really essential. My sister got a phone at 10, and she's been obsessed ever since. Got into quite a bit of trouble with her friends over some group chat texts -- these kids are *too young* to know how to responsibly manage a cell phone, and they won't appreciate it later on as I did. If you need your child to have a phone because you work and you need to be able to call them, I'd look into the most basic phone you can have, so they can only call you, or ask for permission before adding in friends. I hoped this helped!