When LeapFrog came up with the LeapPad Ultra in 2013, I was blown away by how much better it was than previous LeapPad versions. Nearly 2 years later, when I heard that LeapFrog was coming up with a newer version of the LeapPad -- the LeapPad Platinum -- I was so excited to see what improvements they would come up with and what new bells and whistles it would come with. When LeapFrog sent me a review unit to try out, I decided to gift it to my 5 year-old niece.
My nieces loves her new LeapPad Platinum! Her eyes lit up when she first saw it, and now she carries it around with her everywhere and calls it her special iPad. She plays on her parents' tablet and phones all the time, so she was able to get up and running and start having fun on the LeapPad Platinum right away. She loves taking selfies of herself and her little sister just like her parents do on their phones!
The new Imagicard feature (a set of special cards that kids can scan into the LeapPad Platinum and have the characters on the cards come to life on the LeapPad Platinum) is icing on the cake. She's already a big fan of Paw Patrol, so she was amazed that she could scan Imagicard with the LeapPad Platinum and see her favorite Paw Patrol characters join the videogame she is playing.
I've always said that the LeapPad is the perfect kid-friendly tablet and the perfect alternative to letting your kids play on your phone or tablet, and the new Platinum version is no different. It really does give kids hours of educational fun right out of the box, without any of the set-up headaches that plague parents when they try to make their devices kid-safe.
Most of the features found in the LeapPad Platinum are the exact same features that I was so excited to see on the Ultra: the 7" hi-res screen, 8 GB memory, Wifi capability, kid-safe browser, 2MP front and back camera, 480p video, accelerometer, rechargeable battery.
The battery life of the Platinum (5 hrs) is actually less than the Ultra (8hrs)! I was disappointed to see that the Platinum was so similar to the Ultra.
Pretty much the only new feature is the Imagicard technology. Don't get me wrong, Imagicard is an awesome technology and it certainly enhances the educational and entertainment experience for kids.... but the Platinum sells for $129, whereas the Ultra can be found on sale for $64.99 (it originally sold for $149). Is the LeapPad Platinum worth the price premium? You decide!
Disclosure: I received a product sample to facilitate my review, but have not been paid to review the product or give my opinions. The views and opinions expressed here are my own.