The country’s telecoms watchdog, the Federal Network Agency, announced a ban on sales of children’s smartwatches that have a built-in listening system, the FNA announced in a press release. A number of children’s smartwatch makers offers an “eavesdropping” function on their smartwatches aimed at children between the ages of 5 and 12, which is designed to help parents listen in on their children via a remote app. The problem is such a function could allow parents to listen to other people’s conversations if their children are nearby–and parents have been using them to do just that, according to FNA president Jochen Homann:
“Parents can use these children’s watches to listen in to the child’s surroundings without detection via an app. The watches are regarded as unauthorized transmitting equipment. Our investigations found, for example, that parents were using them to eavesdrop on teachers in lessons.”
So there you have it: Nosy parents ruining it for everyone.