capsule review

KidZui

At a Glance
  • Generic Company Place Holder KidZui

    PCWorld Rating

KidZui is a free child-safe Web browser. Its colorful, easy-to-use interface offers access to child-appropriate Web sites, games, photos, and videos. Thankfully, the limited chat features that an earlier version of the browesr provided are no longer available--and there is no premium membership. This latest version, KidZui K2, is entirely ad supported.

The KidZui folks do not specify an age range for their browser, but it is clearly on the young side. Last year I enlisted my 8-year-old daughter in testing the original KidZui, and she pronounced it "cool"--the ultimate compliment. By age 9 (nearing 10), however, KidZui K2 has apparently lost its coolness. My daughter used it for only a few minutes and quickly lost interest. I suggest a range of about 3 to early 8 years old.

KidZui K2 appears to offer richer content than the earlier version. For example, click the Music tab and you get a page of generic kid-friendly pop sites--but you also get a toolbar that lists specific genres. I clicked Jazz and was treated to Web sites focusing on jazz for children that I'd never seen. The toolbar changed to include classic jazz greats. I clicked on Ella Fitzgerald and was presented with a set of (entirely appropriate) Web resources on the singer--and the toolbar changed to list famous women like Georgia O'Keefe and Queen Hatshepshut. I pronounce this new functionality very cool indeed.

My only complaint is that the advertisements--while innocuous--look almost exactly like the Web destinations they're positioned among. Yes, there is a thin black "ad" banner on one corner, but I doubt very young children will understand that means it's advertising.

Regardless of my minor quibble, KidZui K2 is a keeper for families with young children. You can feel comfortable letting your child loose on the Web with this extra-safe kid-friendly browser. If you have children in your household, give it a try.

Note: Downloading the software serves as your agreement to KidZui's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

--Kim Saccio-Kent

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At a Glance
  • PCWorld Rating

    Your young children can surf the Web safely with this kid-friendly browser.

    Pros

    • Easy to use for children 3-8; colorful graphics

    Cons

    • Advertising often looks like kid-friendly content
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