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Our kids technology product reviews are intended to help you work out whether a toy, gadget or kit is a good fit for your child or family. There's lots of cool stuff available, but is it the right choice for the child or teenager that you are buying for? We'll help you make the right choices and get the best value for money.

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Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends assemble. We create gift lists to help you make good choices for kids technology which helps them develop the right skills for the future. We research the best in Coding Toys and Games, Making / Craft Tools and Kits, STEM/STEAM related gifts, Programmable Robots, Electronics Kits and Gadgets for Tech Age Kids and Teens.

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STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. In recent years there is an increased focus in these areas of study. We like to include Art and Design too, so we often talk about STEAM (A stands for Art). At Tech Age Kids we believe Coding is a new literacy and children need to understand how technology works, practice making skills and grow in their curiosity to make a better future for us all.

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We think it's really important for kids to get hands-on with electronics and learn how to make circuits and write code to control hardware. Younger kids can start with conductive playdough. For kids who like to combine craft and tech, littleBits are fab. And we love SAM Labs wireless electronics components for making it easy for kids to make Internet of Things inventions. Lots of electronics kits for kids have support for the Arduino microprocessor environment. The DuinoKit Jr is one of our favourites. Arduino is a fab skill for older kids and teens to develop.

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We love robots at Tech Age Kids, especially programmable ones. We've got lots of them and write reviews and projects that use them. Our programmable robots for kids buying guide is a good place to start if you're not sure what's available. Roby the mBot Meccano robot dog is one of our popular projects and has been with us to lots of events. Our Ozobot LEGO trailer is fab for kids who love LEGO and robots.

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We're advocates of the creative use of technology, but this needs to be balanced with developing physical skills such as papercraft, woodwork, clay modelling, technical drawing and soldering. If children don't develop these skills as they grow up then physical making projects can become frustrating rather than fun. The Maker Community uses the term 'making' as a broad term to include all sorts of artisan skills or craft activities. Being able to make things can lead to life-long hobbies or even careers. It's a great feeling to be able to take a project from an idea in your head to a real object that does something. We're particularly interested to explore products that combine maker skills with tech skills such as electronics but others focus purely on the physical making skills that are still important to modern making.

Lumi is a Smart Indoor Drone Anyone Can Fly



My boys recently received a nano drone as a gift, and it's save to say, it's virtually impossible to fly the thing. So when a new drone comes on the market that says "anyone can fly it" my ears perk up.

WowWee is making just such a claim with their new dancing and programmable gaming drone called Lumi. The Lumi Gaming Drone is said to be easy to fly and promises a lot of features which would be appealing for a tech community.



Not only does the Lumi use Beacon Sense Technology to stablise itself in flight whilst being controlled via a hand-held device, WowWee have opened Lumi's API to allow the creation of your own games.

It's really attractive that Lumi encourages a multi-player experience, but you'll need two drones and hand-held devices.

There's a choregraphy mode which allows you to programme dance moves and record music for the drone. You can even select any song on your tablet or mobile and Lumi will challenge you to follow the beat by matching coloured LEDs on the drone with your device.

Technology


The drone connects to your device using Bluetooth LE, so older devices will not be compatible. WowWee have not yet published a list of compatible devices, but we did ask if it could work with the Amazon Fire.

The Lumi uses a telemetry system, a two way data stream, to observe what the drone is measuring and how it is reacting. You can keep track of measurements and variables including gesture information, stability measurements, battery levels, gyro and acceleromoter readings.


Using the beacon sense technology the Lumi can follow you around. The additional intelligent pods are larger beacons which can be placed around the house to create a virtual course for Lumi to follow. The intelligent pods will be compatible with multiple Lumis.

Power


The Lumi drone battery requires 30-40 minutes to recharge. Simply click out the battery and connect it to your USB power source using the USB charging cable. One rechargeable battery and the USB charging cable are included with Lumi. If you want to extend your flight time, you can click in a new battery while the old one is charging. The early bird starter kit will include two additional batteries.

A fully charged battery will afford you 8 minutes of flight time. If you do the math, you'll only get a maximum of 24 min of play time with 3 battery packs. With long charging times, the Lumi will be a quick game.

Who is it for


My 9 year old loves quadcopters but definitely finds it a challenge to control them directly so I definitely get this product. (Tracy)
The age range for the Lumi is 8 and up.
It's designed for indoor use, hence the obstacle avoidance feature, so you can play is a small space. It has been extensively tested in 4-5 feet of space and performed well. It's not advisable as an outdoor tech toy.

Thanks to the open API's, Lumi could be very popular with the tech community to experiment making their own games. We hope to see an accessible development platform for young coders and kids to learn about coding a drone and make their creations a reality.



Source: Indiegogo
Image Credit: WowWee
Name

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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children: Lumi is a Smart Indoor Drone Anyone Can Fly
Lumi is a Smart Indoor Drone Anyone Can Fly
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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children
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