Owen Ramberg, 12, is the Los Angeles-based founder of Gadgetkid.com, a site that gives an honest appraisal of numerous electronics, tech toys, and gadgets on the market for kids. We are as delighted by Ramberg’s refreshing candor (“I honestly think this product is completely useless…But if it does work, I have to admit it is a pretty cool gadget,” he says of one item) as we are by his rigor. The reviews are thorough, cogent, and reliable and will certainly serve as a go-to guide come holiday season. We are particularly impressed that this young entrepreneur was clever enough to leverage his youth in order to provide users with the only opinion that counts—that of an actual kid. We recently caught up with him to talk about his budding venture:
How did you come up with the idea for GadgetKid and how did you get started?
I enjoy gadgets, but I could not find a site that had gadgets reviewed by kids. I then realized it would be a great idea to create one. I needed two things to launch: a site and gadgets. After searching for over two weeks, I found a programmer that my dad is friends with. Finally, I needed to review gadgets. Over time, I reviewed all the gadgets I had but I still needed more, so I contacted the president of Thinkgeek.com and asked if they could send me more gadgets to review. After multiple attempts, they finally agreed to send me products to review. After much writing, I have reviewed over 60 cool gadgets!
Did you research other sites that review products/games/toys for kids before launching your site? What did you think was missing from the competition?
Yes, I have looked all around the internet but I could not find a site where kids reviewed gadgets. I did not trust reviews written by adults, I felt like they were just trying to sell gadgets.
We like the design of your site. Did you get inspiration from other sites? Did you use wordpress or is this a custom site?
I have always enjoyed Thinkgeek.com so I thought it would be a great idea to base my design off of their site. I did a lot of research trying to find a good site where I could program my site and I ended up choosing WordPress. It is basically a very simple web-site where anyone can create their own blog/webpage.
What are some of your favorite sites?
What advice do you have for other young entrepreneurs?
My advice to other young entrepreneurs is never give up, be resilient and always go with your gut. The most important thing I learned when constructing Gadgetkid.com is you are never ever going to get what you want if you give up.
Did you get any help from your parents/family? Or did you do this all yourself?
I definitely had a lot of family support, but all of the work I did myself. If my family was not there to help me, Gadget Kid would not even be close to what it is today!
We like your writing style. It’s really honest; when we read it we feel like we can trust your opinion. Do you have plans to have other people/peers do reviews as well? In other words, do you have plans to expand the business?
My hope is to have kids all over the world send in reviews so I can expand my audience.
How much time do you devote to GadgetKid in a week? Do you work on it every day?
I work on Gadgetkid.com almost everyday after school for about 30 minutes to an hour. But, I do not find “working” on gadget kid work. I find it rather fun!