Without the benefit of test subjects and knowing the propensity of parents to park kids before the TV, we suspect that the combo audio/video content is most engaging and more expensive.
We are a little concerned at a few things – no deal breakers:
- The duration of some of the content – most of the seeds we tried are around ten minutes. You may need to purchase many seeds over the kid/device’s lifetime. For Birde to be successful, it needs lots of content, and we suggest the ability to swap content with other Birde owners – library-style – would be great.
- We are not sure how portable it really is. When it is out of Wi-Fi range the Birde Seeds can only play audio, not video, stored on the device. That means you can’t easily play it on another home’s TV. It needs to be easily portable so the kids can use it at the sitters, grandparents, friends etc. There is a family group facility, but I am not sure this aspect has been adequately addressed yet.
- The app has no functionality to remove the account if you sell/give it away (you can remove the device). Back to point one, you need to be able to transfer ownership of Seeds and the device.
- The unit only has 8GB storage. The NFC seeds are just a key to downloaded content accessed over Wi-Fi. While you can manage storage via the app, kids may not understand why something won’t play and be discouraged from using it.
I can see it being a companion device for pre-school and early primary school kids.
I remember our children singing along to Playschool until they became addicted to the internet and all the damaging content that entails – damned computers and screen time!
Babysitters, nannies and grannies will adore Birde. It is such an easy and worry-free way to keep their little charges educated and entertained, whether at home or outside at the park or beach (subject to the transit caveats of the points above).
And we will definitely be getting one for our grandson – although he is still a little young, we can just see our daughter-in-law singing along to get him to sleep.
As it is unique and as there is no downside apart from perhaps a Birde Seed habit, we think it is perfect for the task. Keeping kids off parents backs and even reading bedtime stories.