Ubooly Reminds Us of Furby, Won’t Give You Nightmares
By Elizabeth Fish
This fuzzy bear-like thing looks like a fairly standard, oh-so-cute stuffed toy, but it’s really an iPhone case. No, really!
Ubooly, from design company Warb Inc., is an interactive and educational toy for your kids. Ubooly comes in two parts: the huggable plush-critter case and an app for your iPhone or iPad. Once you place your iGadget inside the case, Ubooly will interact with anyone around it, sort of like a smartphone-powered Furby. When you open the app, your screen becomes Ubooly’s expressive little face.
The main aim of the toy is to encourage social interaction, imagination, and critical thinking. Ubooly can tell a story, ask questions, play games, and count; you’ll also be able train it to learn languages via an “online laboratory.” Ubooly comes to life when you speak to it and give it a command or prompt–kind of like a kids’ version of Siri–and it’ll respond to various different prompts.
When you download the Ubooly app, you’ll get four hours worth of material, but Warb Inc. plans to offer monthly updates and expansion packs.
If you want one, head on over to the Ubooly page on Kickstarter. A $50 pledge gets you an iPhone version of the plush-toy case; if you pledge $8,000 (!), Warb Inc. will visit your child’s school for a three-day toy-making workshop (sounds pretty cool–if you can afford it, that is).
I may be an adult, but even I think this toy is pretty cute. And since Ubooly wraps your phone in a ridiculous amount of padding, your precious iOS device should be relatively safe in the hands of your children.
Check out the video below to see the Ubooly entertaining its key testers–kids!