I don't have children living at home, but I have set up a profile for my 7 year old granddaughter and another for my 12 yr old grandaughter who both come to spend weekends with me several times a year.
You can set your child profiles as strict as you want.
There is a main profile that has access to all content. I THINK you can password that profile so that a child can not use it, but I haven't had to do that yet so am not sure. There should be something in the user guide that is online on the HD+ support page that can tell you more thoroughly what you can do to child proof the device.
1) Profiles are great way to guide a user expedrience for a child. And currently Nook HD is the only one (or one of few) offering this.
3) The Nooks are actually pretty sturdy* too and should be able to take a kid-beating. Protection plans also help in this regard for the super-accidents. Or, being a budget device, it's not that expensive to replace if not (compared to say an iPad or laptops, etc)
my 3 cents
* the exception being the power cable on the NC/NT, remains to be seen how sturdy on the HD
I think the real issue hear is not the product, but why do you think a need exists? HD+ is a bit heavy for a 5 year old to use unaided. There is no educational advantage to reading on a tablet. Childrens books for at home in paper have some real advantages, no charging, touching, pointing at illustrations, water spill damage risk minimal, physical contact is pleasing. For travel and unaided use the size you already own is fine. I just think buying content, paper books and stuff for the device you already own makes more sense.
My niece's children, ages 6 and 7, attend a private Catholic school which has recently integrated some ebooks in their library. I saw some kids there using their Nook Tablets to read children's stories. They were having a great time. Some of the teachers expressed their approval and believe that by using electronic devices their students' reading habits may increase as they get older,
Thanks for your replies.
Thanks to all who replied - we are off tomorrow night to our local B&N to get a Nook HD+!
Good choice! Let us know how things go.
As some of you were so kind to offer me some advice - I thought I would let you know the outcome.
So that you all know where I'm coming from - let me share that I have spent the last 15 years in corporate IT, my daughter currently uses a Nexus 7 tablet, my wife a Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 tablet, and we have two Samsung Galaxy SII smartphones.
Last weekend we picked up a 32GB Nook HD+. After letting it charge overnight - I began setting it up. On the positive side - the light weight of the 9" HD+ was nice (and perfect for a young child) and the size was right in between a 7" and 10" tablet - perfect also. I liked the feel of it in my hand. While many reviews of the HD+ remark about the quality of the screen - specs aside - I did not find it impressive at first glance.
SO - I embark upon setting up a profile for myself and one for my daughter. The first thing I realize is (compared to the other two family tablets) how trapped I felt inside of the customized Nook flavor of Android. OK I said - the tablet is for a 5 year old who is probably going to care less about flexibility and customization - so I continue.
My first task is to sideload 10-12 gigs of videos and pictures onto the device - which is where I hit problem 1. I had repeated problems having my Windows 7 computer access/recognize the internal storage on the Nook HD+. A couple of hanging explorer.exe instances and reboots of my computer later - I switch to copying files to the Nook HD+ from an old Dell laptop - which was a little smoother (but still not entirely problem free). OK - files copied - now let's see this screen shine and watch some videos! Oops - problem 2. While the overall quality of the videos in playback was acceptable (not stunning) - the default Gallery App kept losing the thumbnails of both videos and pictures when going back to the Gallery's home page after having watched a video. This happened across both profiles. A chat with BN support advises me to reset the device and start all over - which I diligently did - only to have the same issue with the Gallery App. OK - a little frustrated - I simply pony up $4 for third-party Gallery App - which functions without issue.
My second task was to see how many of her favorite apps on her Nexus 7 are available for download on the Nook HD+. WOW - that's when it hit me - the selection of apps is pretty dismal. I mean - for those that complain that the Google Play store is paltry compared to iTunes - the Nook store has all the selection of the local card store when looking to buy a Valentine’s Day card for the Mrs. ON Valentine’s Day... evening! OK - I found 2 - figured she would try some new ones anyway - I move on.
My third task was to investigate the Nook Kids books - one of the motivating factors for getting me here in the first place! I have to say that the ability to quickly search and find things IN the store is pathetically poor. I ultimately find and download 2 read-out-loud books.
I had NOT told my daughter that this was her new tablet - didn't want her disappointed if it did not work out - and the first night I told her instead of reading paper books that evening - we would read some books on a tablet that I was setting up for someone. We did and we had fun - the read-out-loud books were great and a MUCH improved experience on the 9" HD+ over the 7" Nexus.
In the end - I began to realize that while the Nook HD+ is called a "tablet" - for ME and in MY opinion - it more of a $300 e-reader - which had some extended functionality. Funny too - because the salesgirl at BN who took care of my return (we returned the HD+ yesterday) looked at me after hearing a brief explanation of my complaints about its shortcomings and said "well sir - it is primarily an e-reader"! Yeh - OK - I got that now - thanks.
For now, my daughter will stick with her Nexus 7 and I'll keep my eye out for a deal on another Galaxy Tab 2 10.1. My only concern is the weight of the Galaxy Tab 2 10.1 - I don't see it as being child-friendly. Of course, she'll not have access to the Nook Kids content - but I'm hoping that BN will get desperate enough for the revenue stream to decide to develop Nook Kids for Android.
I hope my tale of woe helps someone out who is considering a Nook HD+ and I thank you all again for time and advice!