Fisher Price has introduced the new Kid Tough DVD player that is both kid friendly and kid tough. Most parents are a little nervous to let junior play with their new laptop or iPhone, and if they do, they are prepared to catch it mid air. This player could drop and bounce a few times and still be in tact, saving parental disposable income. And at the same time, kids will be thrilled with owning their own little DVD player made for them.
The player comes in pink or blue with a steady grip handle and sturdy plastic/rubber surroundings that are about 2.5″ thick. It can be watched propped up by opening the kick stand base or it can be plugged into a larger TV, although the out cable is not included. This player would be particularly useful to entertain kids on a plane or in transit. On my last flight I saw a mom let a portable DVD player work its magic for her two toddlers. They were entertained and eventually asleep. A great improvement to the usual screaming and kicking the back of my seat that inevitably happens when children sit near me.
The controls are simple and easy. There is a large circular play/pause button, 4 arrow buttons, two skip buttons, a stop button, and a ‘house’ shaped button all in large shapes and obvious places on the front console. There is a headphone jack so all those wonderful Disney toons stay in your child’s ears only. Near the jack are the on/off switch, and an easy volume control. The other side has a brightness control next to the power plug. Its easy to pop a DVD player in by pulling out an eject flap on the main console. This is intended to make ejecting deliberate rather then accidental action.
After we inserted the DVD it took a little time to load. The screen is tiny at 3.2″, but it should do the trick for little ones. It is fairly clear, but not the best we’ve seen, probably due to the plastic protection on top of it. However, for a kid’s DVD player protection should and does take priority over clarity. Especially since cartoons are most likely to be watched, I doubt you will hear a kid commenting on the clarity of Aladdin’s princely robe. The sound is satisfactory in Dolby Digital, but again not the best we’ve heard.
The most unique aspect of the Kid tough DVD player is that it is shock resistant to most drops, of course that doesn’t mean you throw it out the window, but it survived the average drop or throw of a child in our simulated tests. We dropped it about a child’s height and the movie paused momentarily but picked up where it left off. So the skip protection is not seamless, but maybe the pause will indicate to the thrower that its not a good idea to keep throwing it around. It comes with a rechargeable 4.8V 2-hour NiMH battery pack and a wall charger. All in all, it’s a very basic DVD player with the ability to take a bounce and get knocked around.Â The Kid Tough DVD player retails for a reasonable $149.95, which is comparably to your average mommy and daddy appropriate DVD player.
The Good: Can be roughed up significantly but won’t break, and it’s got a great kid friendly design.
The Bad: 2 Hour battery life, small screen