Filip, a wearable watch-phone for kids, launches for $199 with $10 plan

Back in July, I looked at Filip, a wearable phone for kids that doubles a location device for parents to keep tabs on the younglings. There wasn’t a price available at the time, but now there is: AT&T will sell Filip for $199 along with a $10 monthly service plan. There doesn’t appear to be a two-year commitment or contract with Filip and the plan is reasonably priced for what it provides.

The $10 a month includes unlimited two-way voice calling and messaging but no data provision. That’s OK because Filip isn’t a data-centric smart watch. Instead, it’s a kid-friendly watch that doubles as a limited hands-free phone — only five trusted numbers can be programmed — and a GPS tracker for parents to know where their kids are. A corresponding mobile app for parents is used to see the location of their child or to set geo-fences for alerts whenever their kids wander too far.

Filip text

I previously highlighted one of my favorite features of Filip, but it’s worth a recap. The device has an emergency button that, when pressed, triggers the following chain of events:

  1. A text message to up to five pre-defined phone numbers are sent with location data.
  2. The device will start recording ambient sound.
  3. Calls are made to the pre-defined phones in succession: If there’s no answer at the first, Filip calls the next, and so on.

Clearly, the device is aimed at pre-teens, so it doesn’t need many bells and whistles. Besides, more features would complicate Filip and potentially require costly data services. For $10 a month — that’s the price even for those who aren’t current AT&T(s t) subscribers — Filip can provide some solid peace of mind when kids are out of sight.

This post was updated at 10:44am PT to remove the following feature (#4): “In the event of no answer from the five phones, Filip can directly call emergency services.” as that function was removed prior to launch.