Kurio Smart review: The first Windows 2-in-1 tablet made for kids

If your child is looking to have their "first computer," then you should consider getting them the Kurio Smart. It's the first Windows 2-in-1 tablet made for kids, and it costs about $170. It runs Windows 10, so they'll have access to the same things us grown-ups do like Cortana, Microsoft Edge, the Windows Store, and more. Don't worry, though, because you'll still be able to determine what websites, apps, and games can use, and even also set time limits.

Kurio Smart specifications

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CategoryFeatures
Display8.9 inch IPS capacitive touch screen
Resolution1280 x 800 pixels
CPUQuad core Intel Bay Trail 1.8 GHz
GPUIntel HD Graphic- Gen 7
OSWindows 8.1 upgradeable to Windows 10
STORAGE32GB
RAM1GB
Camera0.3Mpx Front / 2Mpx Rear
ConnectivityWi-Fi b/g/n - Bluetooth 4.0
PortsMicro USB, Micro HDMI, MicroSDHC
BatteryLithium Polymer 4900mAh

Hardware

The Kurio Smart 2-in 1 tablet comes in either blue and white, or pink and white. It has a glossy, plasticky material, so it feels and looks like a toy. It doesn't feel fragile, though.

The left side of the tablet has the headphone jack, microUSB port, microHDMI port, power port, microSD slot, and microphone. The power port and headphone jack look very similar, so make sure to insert the AC adapter in the right hole. I learned that the hard way.

On top, there's the power, volume, and Windows buttons. There's nothing on the right side. Below the 8.9-inch display are dual front-facing speakers, which I like because that's a better location than being at the bottom or the back of what I'm looking at.

To the left of the display is a 0.3-megapixel camera and the back has a 2-megapixel camera. Those are not something to get excited about but don't forget about the price tag.

The keyboard works as a stand for the tablet. There are only two positions available: open or closed. The angle isn't adjustable. There's no battery within the keyboard, so it's actually drawing power from the tablet. It's not Bluetooth-enabled either so it only works when the tablet is physically connected to the dock. The magnets keep the tablet in place, and they are strong enough so that the dock stays on even when you lift the tablet.

Most of keyboard buttons are normal-sized, but there are some sacrifices to fit them all in the limited space. The Enter key is smaller than I'm used to, and you'll have to use the Function key for some things that you normally use the shift button for, like ? and ". On a positive note, the keys have great travel.

Software

Out of the box, our review unit came with Windows 8.1. The setup process, however, included a free upgrade to Windows 10. Kurio Smart comes with several pre-installed games. The list includes Bubble Blast 2, Burger, Doodle Grub, Happy Chef, Hill Climb Racing, and more. Of course, you can always add more from the Windows Store.

There are also a couple of pre-installed games that use the front-facing camera to recognize movement for controls. For example, you can hit home runs by swinging your arm in front of the camera or steer a parachute by leaning left or right. I had fun playing them, so I can imagine the kids having a blast with these games. There are also plenty of other games to check out at the Windows Store.

It's not all about fun and games, though. Don't forget that this is Windows 10. The Kurio Smart includes a Microsoft Office 365 personal subscription, but I think the Microsoft Word Mobile app from the Windows Store should be enough for kids using these devices.

The Kurio Smart has a 4900mAh battery. I noticed getting about 5 hours of usage until I need to plug it in.

Family Safety

Remember that this is a Window 10 device. Kids can have access to Cortana, Microsoft Edge, the Windows Store, Control Panel, and other settings unless you create a child account for them. This is done through Microsoft's built-in Family Safety system. A "Create a child account" shortcut is available in the Start screen that helps you create the account.

With the Family Safety System, you can:

  • See activity reports about what they do on their devices, including buying apps and searching the web.
  • Set age limits for rated content like apps, games, videos, movies and TV.
  • Set time limits for how long they can use devices.
  • Put money into their account so they can shop in Windows and Xbox stores without a credit card.

Bottom line

The Kurio Smart 2-in-1 tablet is marketed for kids. It looks like a toy, but don't be deceived. This is a Windows 10 device that even grown-ups can use. Don't expect performance to be on the same level as the bigger and more powerful Surface Pro 4, but anyone using the Kurio Smart can browse the web, watch Youtube videos, play some games, write essays with Microsoft Word, and more.

Buy the Kurio Smart for $170 at Toys "R" Us

If your kid is asking you for a tablet, you should highly consider the Kurio Smart. It's a good buy at just under $170, and you can play with it too when they're not using it. Would you buy this for your kid? Sound off in the comments!

Mark Guim is Video Editor at Windows Central. He switched to Windows because the MacBook Pro isn't Pro enough. You can follow him on Twitter at @markguim.

42 Comments
  • 1GB of RAM? not worth $200
  • for you, probably not.but this isn't made for you, but a small child.... unless you are a small child, then i apologize :)
  • It's a Kida 2 in one tablet for under 200 and your complaining about 1gig of ram lol not sure if you know but it runs great with windows 10 on a gig of ram
  • In m experience I'd say it runs OK, but not great.
    I got an HP Stream from the Microsoft Store and used it for a month before returning it. 7 inch 1GB RAM 32GB storage and it couldn't even handle two PDFs without having to reload the other as I switched back and forth between them. The PDF's where weekly ads from two grocery stores my wife frequents for grocery shopping. I had envisioned her having that tablet with her to do her price comparisons with Excel and Weekly ads opened as PDFs instead of carrying around abunch of paper. I admit it was ok for one thing at a time but even then apps where constantly reloading when switching back and forth. It was OK, but not Great.
  • this is perfect for my 6yr. old daugther.
  • Find me a kid safe tablet with more than a GB of ram for $200... I dare you.
  • I was able to find a HP Stream x360 on sale for $199.  Depends on what you call kid friendly I guess.  (Convertible 2 in 1 Touchscreen Laptop (Intel Celeron, 2 GB, 32 GB SSD, Blue) Includes Office 365 Personal for One Year)
  • I bought my 11 and 13-year olds both HP Stream x360s for school and they love them. Not sure if I'd buy this for my 7-year old as she's learning to type and the odd key layout mentioned in the article would be at odds with that.
  • I personally just don't think tablets are right for kids. I got super lucky durring the Microsoft 12 days of deals and picked up a $200 traditional Lenovo Ideapad 15 inch laptop with 4GB RAM, 500GB spinning Harddrive. I find little value in handing over a tablet to kids unless what you intend to do is pacify them. There aren't enough great educational games/apps for kids in the Windows Store. Sure there are alot time wasters and entertainment. But our kids today have too much of that already. I tried really hard to find a tablet with accurate enough stylus/pen input to practice writting, spelling, coloring, but that was a no go. None are accurate enough unless you get a MS Surface 2 or better. With a traditional laptop I get to teach my oldest how to use a real computer. Just interacting with a real keyboard, mouse and learning how to use an operating system and handling a real computer is super educational. We started her learning basic programming skills on scratch.mit.edu . It's really exicting to see them learning computers and they love time with daddy. Another bonus, if they totally jack up the OS, no big deal. You can simply run the sytem recover/reset this PC and everything is fixed.
  • for 170USD you can get a mid-end China Tablet with the latest ATOM cpu and 2GB but maybe if you are lucky 4GB RAM and 64gb EMMC not this "joke"  
  • A Tablet for kids having 1GB RAM is totally worth the $200. Many tablets out there only come with 256MB RAM so this is a great one to get. @Randy You do have kids, don't you?
  • Don't know the last time you looke at tablets. But you can't buy a "Made for Windows" Microsoft approved tablet with less than 1GB RAM. If you managed to find one that had less than 1GB then MS did not approve and that means they would have to pay the Windows license cost that is given for free to those manufacturers who do meet the minimum spec.
  • How did they manage to keep this with Windows 8.1?
  • Newer versions actually ship with Windows 10. It's been on the market for a few months, hence there is a divide in stock.
  • My girlfriend's little brother has a Kurio tablet and I really can't recommend buying anything from this brand. I knew them already from my old job, they are built really cheaply like cheap Chinese tablets with glue and thick solder dots. I really don't understand what kind of "child friendly" hardware this is supposed to be, which has that kind of an easy breakable micro USB port soldered to the mainboard. Service is crappy, too.
  • True that! Those micro USB and mini HDMI ports are going to last all of 2-3 days before the kids yank it while it's connected to something. The power port/connector doesn't look to strong either.
  • My 4 year old son keeps playing on my Surface Pro - I cringe everytime. This would be a great alternative as he likes a mouse and keyboard, in which case his Sony Android tablet is never used. Posted via the Windows Central App for soon to be Windows Phone
  • His tablet may support usbotg
  • If my kids were a little older I'd be all over this, but we're not comfortable with them calling a device their own quite yet. My 4 and 7 year old use my SurfaceRT, HP7 Stream, and primarily the 9 year old 8.1 Desktop. They have their own child accounts so I have them completely locked down and feel very comfortable with them having computer time without my supervision (with the exception of Youtube sneaking into apps). I have hesitated on upgrading my desktop Win10 because Microsoft Family settings are split out per device - I much prefer Win8.1 there's a single setup that follows the user profile instead of me having to individually allow things on each device.
  • How durable does it seem, kids are rough on electronics.
  • Micro USB, you can guess.
  • I guess my daughter is a special case because she isn't rough on her HP envy laptop nor her Lumia 640, but everything else in the house, watchout. :)
  • Meh, I'd rather buy a real 'kids' tablet like the leapfrog epic, or the Kindle Kids edition. Both of those look way better than this junk. But I guess if I wanted to go the Windows route, I might get a dell Venue Pro tablet and buy a case for it. Tablets don't really need keyboards unless they are writing in word or excel, or emails...which kids won't be doing.
  • I actually have the Venue 8 Pro with a good case for my kid and it works great. Although a Fire tablet has a lot of educational apps and stories a Windows Tablet is more versatile and useful than a Fire tablet. Other family members use the Venue 8 pro with a keyboard case and it works nicely. As for the Leapfrogs, I have had those and they are overpriced junk. Durable junk but junk nonetheless.
  • Bah... A few months ago, I bought a Lenovo IdeaTab Miix 2 for my 5 y/o daughter. She loves it. it is funny that I must fight her for using her tablet/computer. 2GB RAM / 64 GB / 10 inches..... for less than $200. it was a steal
  • I can get a Dell Venue 8 Pro with similar specs and add a Bluetooth case for nearly half that price. Seems a bit steep for the specs.
  • An alternative is a $30-40 Lumia 640 without a SIM. WiFi only. Load FREE games. Keeps them occupied forever on long road trips.
    Drop it, break it, lose it...............much less painful. 6 year old grandson left his gameboy on the seat while he competed with his buddy for high score on some "Sonic" game. My daughter looked at me and asked "Dad, you have any idea how much we have spent on that gameboy and games?" I simply smiled and said, yea honey, I can imagine. :)
  • We've 520 that we use the same way! Loaded it with movies, games, and maps.
  • 32gb storage is pretty much useless. My Lenovo tablet has that and after upgrading to Windows 10, the OS began to bloat and consume the entire 32gb storage. I'm going to clean install it but had to buy some special adapters since it only has a single micro USB port. I'd say 64gb is the new Win 10 minimum. And yes, I do have a micro SD card in it but still can't clear the main 32gb.
  • How about doing compacting the installation - read more here: http://blogs.technet.com/b/mniehaus/archive/2015/09/16/windows-10-reducing-the-disk-footprint.aspx You can also reduce the WinSxS folder which will reduce space as will checking in DiskCleanup for Windows.old folders/Previous installs of Windows 10.  
  • I picked up the HP Stream7 for next nothing with a Surface Pro deal. Grandson loves it for Netflix & skype
  • Or you could have picked up the kindle thing for 35$ on black Friday.
  • I'm getting this for my daughter. She has a Nabi that runs Android. I must bring her back from the dark side.
  • This Walmart alternative would work for Mom and POP/Kids - $230 with 2Gb RAM, etc.
  • Start screen on Windows 10 looks terrible on tablets. Bring back horizontal scrolling.
  • May look horrible ( i don't think so...) but I now feel it is easier to scroll. When holding my SP3 only my thumbs are touching the display. Vertical is a much easier motion in that situation.
  • Article states, kids have access to Cortana. If this was setup properly with a child account, Cortana can't be used until the "kid" is 13. Kid can't even use speach to search. I'm told Siri lets kids use speach to search?
  • Letting you kids use Cortana is like playing with fire. As often as it gets it wrong, theres no telling what search results they'll end up getting. Not to mention the web filter doesn't filter all and allow some in Windows 10 anymore.
  • The child safety in Windows 10 web browsing filter no longer works like it did in Windows 8. You can't simply block all sites and add a list of approved sites anymore. The interface may look like it does but if you test it, it does not work that way. You litterally have to block every site you don't want them to go to.  Here's a snippet from their Family Safety FAQ https://account.microsoft.com/family/faq/
    ​"Only allowing specific web sites isn't yet supported on Windows 10, but we're working on bringing that back soon." Also, the Store does not block explicit or mature/R+ rated movie and music previews. The album art and movie trailers are bad enough. This makes Windows 10 unsafe for kids and a total joke. You can't let your kids use a Windows 10 machine unsupervised. All this worked in Windows 8. I had always recommended Windows 8 and 10 to parents for these two features alone which are now crippled. Way to screw up yet another good thing Microsoft.
  • Can you provide link for app(game) that you mentioned in you in your video review at (2:48) that uses front camera to hit home runs or atleast tell me the game name
  • FYI, this Kurio 2 in 1 is now down to $170 for the next day or so. Just in case someone is interested.
  • I want one and I'm an adult.