“Daddy, you forgot to give me pocket money for recess time today and I have no money to buy food!” This happens more than once in our family and this may happen to other children too because their parents forget to give them their daily pocket money.
Very soon, this will no longer be a problem with the use of “POSB Smart Buddy Watch” in all the primary schools in Singapore, as POSB launches the Smart Buddy Programme!
What is this amazing Smart Buddy watch? Our Parenting World team was invited to the launch of POSB Smart Buddy recently and provided this watch for our younger boy to use. POSB Smart Buddy is the world’s first in-school savings and payments system in a form of a watch. It lets him tap to pay in school canteen and many other external shops which accept NETS Contactless like Popular Bookstore, food courts etc. In addition, this watch also helps to track fitness levels (number of steps he walks a day, calories burnt etc) and of course as a watch, it tells you the time. Amazing, right? “Daddy, I think this new watch is so cool. It is way better than my old watch!”
For many of us parents, when we were studying in school, a watch is just a watch, to tell us the time. Today, this Smart Buddy watch can perform so many functions unimaginable 20 years ago.
Cashless society is one of the key themes for this year’s National Day Rally mentioned by Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong. The launch of this POSB Smart Buddy watch is certainly an initiative by the bank to promote cashless transaction in the school. With cashless transaction, there is less risk of your child losing money in school (it is harder to lose a watch which is worn all the time) and even in the event that your child loses the watch, you can quickly deactivate the payment function from your phone app, so that whoever found the watch would not be able to use it.
Step 1: Download the Smart Buddy app
You can download the app from Apple App Store or Google Play depending on which type of smart phone you use. After that you can register with the app.
Step 2: Set up of watch
After you get the watch, you can set the time and date just like other normal digital watches. In addition, you can also key in your child’s name on the watch so that if you have more than one child with the Smart Buddy watch at home, you know which one belongs to which child.
Step 3: Use the app
After registering the app and linking the watch and account, you can set the amount of money provided to your child each day. Your child can start using the watch to purchase food and books from the school canteen and bookshop. As parents, you can track the daily purchase of your child and also teach them how to save a portion of their pocket money into their savings account. If you have more than one child, the app can also allow you to switch the account from one child to the other.
You can let your child know how much he has saved everyday using this Smart Buddy app. This encourages your child not to use up all the pocket money allocated to him each day.
The details on how to use the POSB Smart Buddy watch is provided here by the bank:
Another function we find very useful is that the watch can track how active the child is every day based on the number of steps walked. You can sync the phone with the watch and view the fitness data here.
There are certainly many advantages for the parents to have this Smart Buddy watch for their children. But what about our child’s experience? Does he like it? “Yes, I love my new watch,” said our little boy. “Now I don’t have to worry when Daddy forgets to give me pocket money for recess. I also don’t need to carry all the coins and notes in my wallet to school and worry about losing my wallet because I wear this watch all the time in school”.
- Parents can pre-set the amount of money available for their children every day. This will remove the usual headache of parents giving out pocket money to the child every day or every week.
- The device is able to track which stall your child purchases food from. “Son, you have been spending too much on the drinks stall. Instead of buying soft drinks, can you buy a slice of fruit from the fruit stall instead and drink water from your water bottle?”
- “How many steps did you walk today?” The watch can also tell parents how active the child is for the day. Many of us uses our mobile phone apps to track how many steps we walk a day but for a child who does not have a smart phone, this watch can perform the same function too.
- “I wonder if my child has left school and taken school bus back?” If you are thinking of this regularly at work, the Smart Buddy watch will solve this problem for you as the app can tell you when your child has board the bus and when he has alighted. It can also help you locate your child in the school, like a mini-GPS tracker. This function is still under testing at the moment.
- Remember the old days when we collected stamps under the POSB National School Savings Campaign which was last launched in 1983? With this Smart Buddy watch, we now have the digital version which also perform the same function, to help your child learn to save.
If there is an award for the “Best Invention for 2017 in Singapore”, we believe this POSB Smart Buddy watch will definitely win the award because this amazing invention which is in-line with our society moving towards cashless transaction is really a “Smart Buddy” not only to the children but also to their parents as well.
To find out more about POSB Smart Buddy watch, please visit:
In addition, you can find out more by reading this article on “Trying out the POSB Smart Buddy Programme – learning value of money is more than being able to “touch dollar notes and coins” and review from other bloggers.