User Rating: Very Good
Pros:good built-in game
Cons:SD cards rarely work
online\customer support poor
stylus pen needs frequent callibration
The Bottom Line: I really like the concept and the cartridge games are great, but overall the system boasts way more than it actually performs.
I bought one of these for my daughter's 5th bday and it worked for about 3 months before it stopped recognizing the stylus pen and I assumed that it was broken.
Recommend this product?
After buying a 2nd one (because after all we had invested nearly $70 in cartridges alone) on sale from leapfrog.com, we found that it did the exact same thing and apparently it needs callibrated OFTEN. Sometimes 5 times a day and my children really don't play them that much, but I was satisfied just to get them working again until I decided that I wanted to use the online functions. I really wish that I'd never installed that software or told my now 6 year old what you are supposed to be able to do with it. I own the recommended SanDisk SD card and it DOES NOT recognize it despite following all the troubleshooting.
Since one of the big benefits of the leapster handhelds vs. the leapster TV we already had is that it's portable, but there's nothing quite like trying to drive down the road and calculate a stylus because it stopped working for the fourth or fifth time in a single day.
I'm also very disappointed in the lack of customer service on leapfrog's part. I spent hours researching how to troubleshoot both problems only to wind up still not being able to use the online functions and now when the SD card is in it doesn't even recognize that the leapster is connected to the computer. I own all of the following leapfrog products: Leapster tv (with 2 controllers - despite the fact that nearly all games are one player), baby's first leappad, my first leappad & leappad with microphone which is why I continued purchasing the same brand.
I generally expect that products designed for a 4 year old's use should be easy enough for an adult to operate. If you need a class to learn callibration & SD card syncing then it's just not user friendly.
Amount Paid (US$): 50
Type of Toy: Educational
Age Range of Child: 6 to 8 Years