Discovery Kids app perfect for tots

Patricia P. Esteves - The Philippine Star
Discovery Kids app perfect for tots
Social media star and celebrity Scarlet Snow Belo with her parents Dr. Hayden Kho and Dra. Vicki Belo at the launch of Discovery Kids App at the Manila House in BGC. Discovery Channel has tapped Scarlet for a do-it-yourself series on its Discovery Kids App.

The mobile app subscription service for kids is aimed at sparking children’s curiosity and igniting their imagination with the apps’ new shows, games and books everywhere.  The platform is built for kids age four to seven years old.

Picture this: A family is eating out in a restaurant and in a jiffy, a mother brings out a mobile device for her three-year-old son. Soon her child is playing a game on the app. Elsewhere, kids do the same, their eyes are transfixed on their cell phones or tablets playing games while waiting for their food.

This is the new norm and children, nowadays, are very adaptable and open to the technologies of the future.

“I think children are actually very technology savvy. I think it’s more natural for children to adjust to technology. I don’t think they’re struggling with the technology, I actually think it’s the parents who are having more challenge,” Jay Trinidad, president and GM for Discovery Kids Digital told The STAR at the launch of Discovery Kids App, a mobile subscription service for kids, aimed at sparking chilldren’s curiosity and igniting their imagination with the apps’ new shows, games and books everywhere. The platform is built for kids age four to seven years old.

Trinidad expressed optimism that Pinoy kids will love and appreciate the app.

“Filipino children are the smartest in the world. I’m obviously a Filipino, recently, one of my cousins walked to the microwave and he touched the microwave because the expectation from the children is that everything is smart. I think the Filipino children are as ready for the technology as any other children,” he said. 

There are a thousand apps out there for kids to play but what sets the Discovery Kids app is its unique watch-play-learn experience and a specially curated slate of content that parents can trust.

“The Discovery Kids app is not only video. A lot of the apps out there are only watch, it’s the only thing you can do on it. But with our app, you can watch because there’s thousands of videos, but you can also play, so we have a lot of games made specifically for them, and then there’s also books, so you can have books read to the kids there. So I think what makes it a little bit more unique is, children will not only have a lean-back experience of watching, but they also have an interactive experience to play cause kids love to play and there are also books there. So it’s a video, games and books app,” Trinidad said.

Jay Trinidad, president and general manager for Discovery Kids Digital

During the launch, Instagram sensation Scarlet Snow Belo made a surprise appearance with her parents Dr. Hayden Kho and Dra. Vicki Belo. Scarlet’s video clip, where she makes slimy balls using kitchen stuff, was shown at the launch. Discovery Channel has tapped Scarlet for a do-it-yourself series on its Discovery Kids app.

Trinidad, in an earlier TV interview, said, “Scarlet was the perfect partner in encouraging kids to learn digitally while interacting with their parents in real life.

“When Scarlet is teaching you to make halo-halo, we’re encouraging you to turn off the screen and go make halo-halo with your parents,” he said. “All those arts and crafts that we’re making in there, we’re really trying to encourage you to take what it is and go out in the real world and do real things,” he added.

Content highlights include shows that kids already know and love such as My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, Transformers Rescue Bots, Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom, Insectibles, Oddbods and Angry Birds Toons. They can also watch local content with favorite children’s program TeamYey! from ABS-CBN. There are also games like Wild Kratts: Monkey Mayhem, Nature Cat: Park Builder and Peg + Cat: Chicken Blast Off and original games like Terra Formers, Ultimate Animal Races and Rocket Escape. Digital books include Scaredy Squirrel and Goodnight Gorilla. Children will be delighted that there are shows from Discovery’s content library such as Cupcake Wars: Kids, Meet the Penguins, How Do They Do It: Kids Edition and Guess What They’re Making.  Subscribers can get unlimited access to the platform across their devices with one account and can download content for offline viewing.

Discovery has conducted a research before launching the platform in the Philippines and one of the things they found out is that kids still like to watch TV but “are getting more and more screen time with their mobile device.”

Of course, one concern of parents is online security. At a time of heightened concerns about online privacy, there are worries about who can get access to the app. Trinidad assured parents that the app is completely safe for children to use and parents can have a peace of mind while their kids are playing on the app.

“One of the wonderful things is that the app is 100 percent curated by human beings. There are no algorithms and parents know that every content has been touched by Discovery Kids experts. If the parent leaves the child with the app, the parent is confident that it’s completely safe. It’s 100 percent-curated content by children experts. And that’s a big difference from what’s available in the market,” Trinidad said.

The app is a core part of Discovery’s strategy of evolving from one of the global leaders in TV to a digital content company, with an evolving suite of multi-screen products such as Eurosport Player and Motor Trend, for super fans and passionate enthusiast communities.

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