Parents who are looking for a fantastic interactive storybook definitely should not pass up The Beach Ball. This adorable tale of a music loving octopus and her new ocean friends is sure to entertain kids and adults alike.
If you’ve ever tried browsing the App Store for children’s books, you’re well aware of the fact that there are plenty to choose from. It’s tough to find the right book you’re looking for, and it’s a process that often includes quite a bit of trial and error. Box of Frogs Media is a well-known developer of fantastic storybook apps, and The Beach Ball is their latest creation.
The Beach Ball is the story of a giant octopus that emerges from the deep ocean, banging loudly on a drum. Initially she frightens the other sea creatures she encounters, but she calmly explains that she’s seeking friends to make music with. As the story progresses, the octopus teaches her new friends how to make music and dance.
Kids can choose to either read the story themselves or enable narration. I was pleased to hear how clear the narrator’s voice is, and kids shouldn’t have any issues following along with the story. It’s also worth noting that words on the screen are highlighted as the narrator reads them.
To navigate The Beach Ball, children must flip through pages by tapping and dragging their finger on the screen. While this motion helps to mimic actual page turns, I found the responsiveness on my iPhone to be somewhat lacking. Often times it took a few tries in order to get the page to turn. My suggestion would be to enable page turns by both finger swipes and tapping on the edge of the screen.
In terms of graphics and animations, The Beach Ball is beautifully illustrated. Colorful pages filled with elements that kids can interact with make for a truly enjoyable experience.
I reviewed The Beach Ball on an iPhone 5, which posed a little bit of a problem. Text is incredibly small on pages making it difficult to read. However, text size wasn’t an issue when I tested the app on an iPad 4.
Overall, The Beach Ball is a brand-new interactive storybook for iPhone and iPad that’s worth every penny. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the story, and I believe kids will enjoy it, too. Parents don’t have to worry about advertisements or in-app purchases, making The Beach Ball a safe environment for even the youngest of children.
The Beach Ball requires iOS 5.1 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.