A new Kickstarter project that promises to make kids' gaming at home a lot more family friendly has started today.
Called MiiPC, the Android-powered computer can be switched off remotely by parents, and allow them to monitor what is going on so kids can't stray too far away from their homework.
Priced at $89 (£59) on a Kickstarter early bird discount, MiiPC comes with a HDMI connection so it can be hooked up to computer monitors and most modern TVs and with two USB ports to be used with a keyboard and mouse.
"Parents also have access to a MiiPC companion mobile app giving them complete peace of mind knowing that they can monitor the real-time activities of their children from anywhere - work, the supermarket, a restaurant," explains the company behind the new device hoping to go on sale once it's got its funding. "While they’re on the move, parents can instantly adjust the settings that allow their children access to games, YouTube, Facebook and other distractions from homework and learning at home,"
“MiiPC came out of my experience with my two kids," says Young Song, co-founder of eMachines which was acquired by Gateway in 2004. "We think the Internet has opened up all sorts of possibilities and I love that my children have access to information for their classes at the tip of their fingertips.
"However at the same time the Internet poses significant challenges for parents. Traditional software or hardware solutions simply block kids from going to certain websites. This is inherently limiting and it also does not address what we believe is a key challenge with kids and the Internet: its addictiveness."
A parent can register any number of family members and can carefully monitor use in real time on the MiiPC companion mobile app that works on Android and the iPhone.
You can see if one member is hogging the computer and make sure that every child gets their time online.
Running Android 4.2 (Jelly Bean) the full specs include a Marvell ARMADA Family Series Dual Core1.2GHz SoC with 1GB DDR System RAM and 4GB of internal flash storage that is expandable via a SD slot or USB port.
The device also comes with Wi-Fi, Ethernet and Bluetooth as well as HMDI 1080p support. MiiPC is hoping to raise $50,000 on Kickstarter.
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