Archive for May, 2012

Angus and Max Blast Off onto iPhone and iPad

That’s right. Angus and Max Blast Off has finally been released onto the App Store for iPhone and iPad. Over 6 months of hard work has gone into this project, and we hope everyone enjoys it as much as we have enjoyed putting it together…

 

A few more Angus and Max Blast Off teasers

Following up from our sneak peek video of “Angus and Max Blast Off” earlier in the week, here’s a few teaser shots that we’ve been sharing with our Facebook and Twitter fans over the last few days:

  

For those unaware, here’s a quick synopsis of what to expect.

A mysterious noise from the backyard wakes Angus from his sleep, and he soon finds himself taking off into the wonderous depths of the solar system with his eager dog Max. Get involved in the story as you get to help with a variety of tasks, as Angus and Max whizz past planets, stars, comets and asteroids on the way to the fascinating dwarf planet Pluto.

Everyone at HDG is excited about our latest MiBooks offering, and cannot wait for launch day!

Take a first look at Angus and Max Blast Off!

Here’s a first-look, sneak peek preview video for the upcoming MiBooks interactive kids book, ‘Angus and Max Blast Off’.

A mysterious noise from the backyard wakes Angus from his sleep, and he soon finds himself taking off into the wonderous depths of the solar system with his eager dog Max. Get involved in the story as you get to help with a variety of tasks, as Angus and Max whizz past planets, stars, comets and asteroids on the way to the fascinating dwarf planet Pluto.

Angus and Max will be available from the App Store in early June 2012.

You can find out more at the MiBooks website, or follow us on Twitter or Facebook to be notified when Angus and Max is released!

 

Content vs Interaction

One of the most common questions that we’re asked, or comes up during planning sessions for kid-based apps, is which is more important to the overall product – content or interaction. For example, in the case of a storybook app, is the story of the book itself more important than the illustrations and animations. Well, it’s actually a more complicated question than just ‘which is more important?’

In an ideal world, a kid-based app should be fulfilling both sides of the equation. That is, it should be both content and interaction-rich. But with a kid-based app that is aimed at younger children (say 2-4 years old), it would be fair to say that the illustrations and animations (the interactions) are of more importance to the child.

Let me explain – if we go back to our storybook example, with younger children the story itself is primarily there for the purposes of the parent, who is the one that sits down with the child and reads the book with them. Usually the story is simple and easy to follow, with a straightforward premise, so that the young child can follow along. The interactions and animations, however, are there to be entertaining and fulfilling for the child, and being able to touch objects on a tablet screen is something that a young child can achieve easily and receive instant feedback from. When we’ve been testing some of our own kid-based apps with younger children, it is almost always the animations and sounds that are of most interest to the child, with the story itself taking a back seat.

For older children (say 5-8 years old), the balance starts to shift. Content very much becomes more of a focus, given their more advanced minds and reading abilities, and their desire for the story to be one they can connect with, follow and understand. If the story is one that doesn’t relate to them, or is too easy or too difficult for their age-group, then they will lose interest quickly, and the quality of the interaction won’t be enough to bring them back.

Now, that’s not to say that interaction suddenly becomes less important with older children, but simply that the balance has shifted from interaction being the priority to it being in more of an equilibrium between content and interaction. So, therefore, the key with kid-based apps is to always consider the age group you are targeting – because that will give you a good starting point on whether content, interaction or a solid combination of both are of most importance to your project.

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