“Appcessories” are becoming a new buzzword in the tech industry. What are they, you ask? Appcessories are any products you use mobile phone or tablet apps to interact with, merging the digital and physical worlds together. I’ve highlighted a couple game appcessories here on Screen Play, like the Duo Pop and GameChanger Board Game (both use the iPad) and just came across an appcessory from kids' app publisher Tipitap that turns your iPhone into a little talking teddy bear.
HappiTaps Beary Happi by Tipitap and Infantino is a little bear-shaped holder that you slide your phone (or iPod Touch) into. It’s cute enough as an iPhone case, but the magic happens when the bear comes alive, thanks to the free Beary Happi: Lovable Friend app. After downloading from iTunes, the bear instantly becomes an interactive “friend” that your child can sing along with, tickle, play Peek-a-boo with, tell jokes to and even help him fall asleep.
Depending on the age of your child, there are different modes of play – “Toddler” which automatically runs through the different activities your child can do with Beary or “Manual” mode which gives kids more autonomy over how to interact with the app. In addition to cute little games kids can play, they can also just leave the app running to have Beary be more of a companion and funnily enough, parents can choose one of three interactive settings for this mode – Calm, Happy Medium or Chatterbox. Yes, he can really talk for hours. (Just keep in mind that having the app run continuously will drain your battery.)
Beary’s face is framed perfectly by the HappiTaps case and his voice and gestures are realistic. Certainly realistic enough to engage a toddler or preschooler and keep them entertained for quite some time. Kids will enjoy the interactivity of the app and especially how reactive Beary is to kids’ touches and the way they move him around. If you place him face down on a surface, he knows it and says “I can’t see!” Pretty impressive.
As if you need any more reason for your kids to be obsessed with your iPhone, HappiTaps may just push them over the edge of iPhone love. But use with caution, this iPhone appcessory may become the precise reason why you’ll never get your phone back.
Here’s a look at Beary in action:
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