My wife and I got each of the girls their cellphones as an umbilical cord, when they started leaving the nest for short excursions (around 12 yrs). We made it clear that in fact the phones we OURS not theirs, so we could keep track of their whereabouts. And if we called and weren't immediately answered, there would be hell to pay. And very occasionally, there was.
My soon to be 2nd grade daughter asked me a while back when she could get a phone. I told her when she turned 24 that is the same age myself and her mom got our first cell phones. She didn't like that answer but she doesn't need to know better. She also cannot wrap her head around the fact that before that we didn't take a phone everywhere we go.
My kids whine about getting ones, but so far no from us has worked just fine. My oldest is 10 and she is pretty responsible, but why get locked into a monthly expense like that if you really don't need it when you get down to the brass tacks? We know our kids schedules and also know when we need to be picking them up from things. If they have to wait a bit, big deal:rolleyes:. My cousins wife had a great comeback for her kids when they said all their friends had cell phones. She told them "use theirs then if you need to get hold of us.":biglaugh: They finally caved and got them phones this year and they're 14 or 15, so I suppose that may be when we relent. I think 16 is probably a wise age, so you can keep track of where they are at when they get car freedom. I'm planning on providing a basic voice and text plan. They can pay for more if they think they need it. Sorry. I'm one of those old fashioned people who think it's okay to teach a kid what no means.
I'm sure there is an appropriate age for a kid to have a cell phone, but my kids will get nothing but a basic phone/plan until they can pay for it themselves...
A smartphone in Kindergarten is just plain ridiculous, and I feel I need to slap their parents for that.