Eight-year-old Ty Stokols didn't think it was fair his friends couldn't text him, so he's been working to fix that. Ty and his father Stephen Stokols, CEO of FreedomPop, have designed a kid safe smartphone plan that protects kids, but still lets them play online.
The deal uses a $29.99 Motorola E powered by FreedomPop, an internet and mobile phone service provider based in Los Angeles. The phone is included in FreedomPop's kids pack, which receives 500 megabytes of data, 200 minutes of calling and 500 text per month for free. For $10 extra the device comes with parental controls like text monitoring, location tracking, site blocking and more.
Ty initially proposed the idea to his father so he could engage more with his friends outside of class.
"I wanted to text and play games with my friends, but they didn't have phones because their parents didn't trust them [on the Internet]," Ty said.
Through their research, the two found that parents weren't letting their children use mobile devices due to online dangers. Ty said he wanted to help solve the issue.
"I asked my dad if he could block the sites that their parents didn't trust," Ty said.
According to Stokols, Ty helped research what could be done.
"He actually started digging in and finding solutions, and so we realized we could come up with a kid phone," Stokols said.
They collaboratively adapted Ty's initial proposal and began working toward creating a more kid-friendly mobile device.
Stokols said parents were already looking for an alternative.
"It not only tuned out that it was good idea and he was validating real demand ... but it also turned out when we looked at it from a distributer perspective and some of the macro perspective, it was validated that people actually wanted this," Stokols said.
The FreedomPop kid pack plan is now for sale online at freedompop.com.