The Story of App Friday

Recently I’ve been approached with questions about the origins and history of the App Friday program. For those who are involved or interested in apps for kids, here are some details.

App Friday is a grassroots marketing program that started on here at Moms With Apps.

We were a group of parents who created apps. We thought Apple’s App Store would magically connect us with customers as soon as our first app went live on iTunes. We thought we would reach people all over the world through a single, perfectly manicured thumbnail icon. But that wasn’t often the case, so we needed to rethink the situation: how could single digit downloads for our apps increase to double, triple and quadruple digit downloads?

The idea was to collectively generate awareness by featuring an app every week along with a link exchange for cross-marketing. By putting our focus into one community-oriented blog post, we hoped to establish a network effect and thereby market our app.

As Editor and administrator of the blog, I launched the first experiment on March 18, 2010. I packed my app, “My Little Suitcase”, into the guinea pig box and set it free for a day to draw attention to the post. At the same time, all around the world, we exclaimed “App Friday!” to our social media networks. I added a link exchange by Simply Linked so other app makers could post about their apps. Everyone who posted a link, also spread the word about the freebie, and about App Friday. The posts continued weekly for several years, featuring hundreds of apps on the blog.

Facebook Pages were peaking in popularity around the same time App Friday was taking off. George Karavias, a fellow app maker from Greece, pitched in to set up and lead the Facebook page. We started hosting live events on the Facebook page called Download Parties. Developers, parents, teachers and reviewers lined up to hear about app news and deals, while gobbling up promo codes for apps. These virtual events were actively attended, and after a party, the concentrated number of downloads propelled an app’s ranking up the iTunes chart.

But the free app aspect of the program was always controversial. Some believed going free was worthwhile to generate awareness and word of mouth, sort of like a loss-leader advertising program. Others believed going free devalued their apps. There was certainly a trade-off to the strategy, and valid views on both sides. I dove into the topic at the MamaBear Tech Conference in 2013, elaborating on app store optimization trends around free promotions.

Meanwhile, the number of developers participating in App Friday increased. We could no longer fit everyone on a single blog post. Anahelena Natera of Zen Labs Apps suggested a grid layout to more evenly display the apps, and over time with the help of George Karavias and Marcel Widarto, a dedicated website and database was built to host an “App Friday Download Center”.

George and Marcel became pillars of this program, with ideas, camaraderie and technical leadership to build out the site. George even programmed an iOS app for App Friday, showcasing the weekly promotions on mobile, together with video previews for each app (very slick!). Our challenge was how to sustain energy for a time-consuming volunteer effort, while app marketplaces and social media were changing. Facebook Pages lost their organic reach, and the Page structure was no longer conducive to hosting live events. But we kept trying, and enlisted the help of wonderful technical and design contacts (thank you Giorgos and Dimitra) to improve and maintain the program.

Meanwhile, Garry Froehlich of Jellybean Tunes was publishing the App Report. This was a weekly post he started on the blog at Moms With Apps and then grew into syndication. He understood the linkages between the weekly marketing efforts, and advised and supported App Friday wherever possible.

Julie Brannon of TELP Media has been a cornerstone of the app marketing industry for #edtech, and graciously works with Garry every week to support App Friday on social media. Under Julie’s leadership, the three of us co-hosted the first App Friday Twitter party for Back to School this past August. It was a blast to see a live audience of app enthusiasts converge once again.

Our communal #appfriday shout-out continues to ride the rails of social media, advocating for independently made and awesome educational apps. With this collaborative style of marketing, we realize it’s more helpful to support fellow app makers than to compete against each other. Since every learning objective can be reinforced in different ways, there is no “perfect” educational app. Instead, all apps work together to teach subjects like language, math, science and even music.

So next time you see or hear about App Friday, I’d love it if you could just take a moment… Do you have an app on the store? Do you know of a newly released app that you like and respect? Are you curious about new, family-friendly apps? If so, consider channeling your enthusiasm and encouragement through your networks to #appfriday, and then subscribe to the email newsletter. App Friday has been around for many years, and we hope it sticks around for many more.

Extra special thanks to George Karavias, Marcel Widarto, Garry Froehlich, and Julie Brannon for supporting the cause, through thick and thin.

@LorraineAkemann

App Friday: Moms With Apps Goes LIVE on iTunes!

Welcome to App Friday, our weekly link exchange of family-friendly apps. We are in a celebratory mood this App Friday. Our first collective effort to organize family-friendly apps throughout our membership has just been released on the iTunes App Store, for FREE. The Moms With Apps APP is a catalog to help parents browse apps by educational category. Looking for math, spelling, or science apps? Now you can see these choices organized in a bright display on your iPhone or iPad. Over the next several months we will be adding and refining these categories in hopes of making this THE ideal tool for finding apps for your family, and it’s YOUR feedback and participation that will help us meet that goal.

Celebrating with us this week are Tracey from Tales2Go and Rod from Screen Time, and an entire link exchange of happy developers. Enjoy! And keep posted here next week as we plan an exciting agenda of PR promotions throughout our social media channels.

What is your app about? The Moms With App mobile app is a new tool to help parents find apps sorted by specific educational categories. It was developed by Andrew at BabyBinks, and represents over 600 apps throughout the Moms With Apps membership. Features include easier app discovery, adding apps to your wishlist, browsing by new release, and sharing great finds with friends. We will be releasing consistent updates over the next several months to further expand and refine our selection. We hope you like it, and welcome your review on iTunes.

Why is it special? We think it’s the first tool of its kind to give an organized voice for family-friendly apps, and we intend to be the best and most committed resource to help make your iDevice an educational tool for families.

What’s in it for me? Download it for FREE, to your iPhone or iPad – ANYTIME!

More App News for Friday, February 4th!!!

BUY ONE GET ONE FREE: Friday marks the one year anniversary of Tales2Go, the award winning and nationally recognized audio story app for kids. Founders Tracey and William have set up a fantastic Buy One Get One Free promotion, and welcome you to participate. On February 4th, folks who are new to Tales2Go, who download andregister on Friday, and who make a purchase during their initial 30-day free trial, will be able to get the buy-one-get-one free offer. Anyone with a pre-existing Tales2Go account who purchases a subscription on Friday will get a second subscription for free. The Tales2Go team will track your registration and will extend your purchases, accordingly.  NOTE: Your account will initially reflect your purchase only, not the added time, but will be updated in your account within a week.

FREE ON FRIDAY: Screen Time, by Rod Liberal, is an easy-to-track iPhone app designed to help parents encourage their children to maintain a healthy TV and Video Games schedule with the use of allowances and rewards. It empowers kids to make healthy choices about their daily activities in a balanced and fun way while setting consistent, realistic expectations. On February 4th, Screen Time will be FREE TO DOWNLOAD!

FREE NOW: Uma of Bubulu Labs has just updated Christmas Art for Kids to ‘Winter Art for Kids”, which includes new art swatches for winter! Their latest update includes a snowman waiting to be adorned with accessories, and then off he goes on the slopes with his fancy skis. Explore colors, shapes and spaces with this latest version. And don’t forget – you can mix-and-match shapes from different swatches too. Through App Friday, February 4th, Winter Art for Kids is FREE TO DOWNLOAD!

App Friday Link Exchange Our goal at Moms With Apps is to spread the word about family-friendly apps. We also like to know about great deals. Do YOU have some app news to share? If so, please participate in our link exchange and post it down below. Include the app name (& details) in the Link Title, your email, and a URL to the app. Thanks for your participation!

App Friday: Moozart for iPad

Welcome to App Friday, our weekly link exchange of family-friendly apps. This week we get to inspire young composers with Moozart, a musical composition tool that helps sheet music come to life. Before you know it, piano lessons will be the most popular topic in your household. Happy App Friday!

What is Moozart about? Moozart is all about barnyard animals teaching your child the basics of making music and the musical staff. Its “moozical” staff is as simple to use as dragging barnyard animals onto the staff. The animals sing their sounds in tune with their location on the staff and right in time with the beat of the song. Moozart allows your children to play their own creative compositions or explore and manipulate one of the many bundled songs. Moozart replaces the boring dots and lines of the typical musical staff with bright, colorful and adorable barnyard animals. Cute and kiddo-friendly music composition might be what inspires your child to be the next great composer!

Why is it special? Writing music can be complex, even boring for some children, especially younger ones. We felt that the iPad platform offered an attractive and intuitive way to allow younger children to easily experiment with music creation. By removing some of the complexities of standard sheet music, such as time signatures, flats and sharps, and even standard musical notation itself, Moozart makes music composition easier and more engaging for your children.

What’s in it for me?

More App News Vito Technology, the creators of StarWalk, are promoting Geo Walk for iPhone and iPad this App Friday. Geo Walk is a pictorial encyclopedia of interesting people, places and things in our world. It uses a moveable globe to explore the earth, and then you can tap on items of interest. Let them know what you think!

App Friday Link Exchange Our goal at Moms With Apps is to spread the word about family-friendly apps. We also like to know about great deals. Do YOU have some app news to share? If so, please participate in our link exchange and post it down below. Include the app name (& details) in the Link Title, your email, and a URL to the app. Thanks for your participation!

What’s YOUR Story?

Our first feature this week is written by John at Apps for Kids. Moms With Apps has posted articles in the past about the creativity crisis and the importance of play. In this article, John discusses how his Build A Story app fosters the creative process of storytelling by letting the child tell their own tales – yet another example of how apps can be so much more than a spectator sport.

I distinctly remember the first multiple-page story I ever wrote.  I was in 1st grade, and Mrs Powell told us that instead of her reading us a book that day, she wanted us to tell the story — about anything we wanted. 

“Anything at all that you can imagine,” she said.  “Really bring it to life!” I still remember her exact words. 

And that’s when I first realised the power – and fun – of the experience of storytelling.

I was free to create, out of thin air, any tale I chose to, any scenario or character I could dream of, any world at all that I could imagine coming to life.

Until then, I had looked at picture books.  Turned pages and read stories and had stories read to me … but now, it was my turn to say what was going to happen.

I still remember what I wrote in that first story: It was set on the playground of the school.  The Slide and the Seesaw were talking (talking!) about which of the two Swings on the Swingset could fly higher; and later, a friendly playground competition ensued.

A budding J.K. Rowling? No way.

But now, with two school-age children of my own, I can actually see the enjoyment and sheer fun they experience as they think about and consider the infinite possibilities available to them. Now, they’re bringing their new worlds to life.

The Power of Telling Stories

Obviously, there is nothing in the world like reading a good book (and I include some e- and interactive books in that as well). But, the fact remains that books and stories are still the creations of others.  Wonderful, magical creations to be certain, but others’ creations nonetheless.  

As a child (and as an adult), my love of books was and is boundless. They are among my most prized possessions, and I still have many of my childhood books that my kids now read. 

But the fact remains, while I “own” these books … they “belong” to others.  As much as I love them, there is nothing like learning to tell a great story of your own.

That’s why we created Build A Storyfor iPad. We wanted to give children (and parents) some of the themes and characters to develop their own tales and stories – but only so they can create and write the real action that can then take place.

Writing stories is such a fundamental way for a child to express their view of how the world does – or could – work.  From playing with the the laws of physics, to exploring (and expressing) how the child relates to other humans, the essential ingredient in storytelling is imaginative play.

Creating vs. Consuming

‘Imagining’ and ‘play’ and ‘create’ — as opposed to ‘consume’ — are the key differences we have tried to build into our app.

A recent New York Times article gets to this point when the journalist chronicled the movement to restore children’s play. In that article (http://nyti.ms/fUofha), the general consensus of experts seems to be that ‘video games’ don’t count as truly beneficial play — but they do make an exception for “those that involve creating something.”

We want kids to be able to explore their own imaginations, and give them a simple way to communicate their thoughts and dreams, rather than simply taking in the dreams and imaginations of others.

Pretty pictures are nice – but its all about the story

In developing our app, we wanted to do something others haven’t yet done in a significant way.  We wanted kids to be able make storybooks, not just picture pages.  Whether they’re young, and dictating the written part of the story to Mom or Dad to type in… or older kids proficient enough on a keyboard to spell out what’s happening, it’s the writing and language aspect that matters to us, and to other parents we know and talk to.

To us, the narrative element and its obvious connection to language development is the real benefit – the conflicts and resolutions and innermost thoughts that no character, no matter how well drawn, is able to completely communicate on its own.

So we worked long and hard on the ‘Story Box’ feature of our app that captures the writing, and the Dialog bubbles that allow characters to speak their minds.

We also strongly believe that one page is not enough. So we took extra time to allow for multiple-page story editing and saving.  In the end, the child has a storybook to show and tell, one they can save and share no matter how many pages it takes them to tell their tale.

We believe that kids love to create. To imagine. To develop their own worlds and use all the new technology to dream up outlandish, or funny, or emotional, or simply fun situations and scenarios.

That’s our story… what’s yours?

App Friday: Happy Holidays!

Welcome to App Friday, our weekly link exchange of family-friendly apps. This is a big week for family-time, so our traditional App Friday post is slightly different. Our goal today is to reach out to new iPad owners who are wondering about the “app world”,  and where they should start in order to make their iDevice as interactive and family-friendly as possible. So come along, let’s dive in!

What apps should I download? Every family has different needs based on the age and preferences of the child. With so many apps, it can be tough to find the right fit. Part of the process involves experimentation and word of mouth. If you are in the mood for window-shopping, browse “Developer Members of MWA” in this blog’s sidebar. These are all people (mostly parents) who have created family-friendly apps. For a more targeted selection, click the page tabs across the top of the blog for recommendations on creativity, learning, parents, special needs, reading, and family fun.

How much do they cost? You’ll see quite a bit of variation in pricing. Some apps are free, some are $.99, and some are $4.99 or higher. Developers can change their price at any time, so promotional sales are common.

When is the best time to download apps? Here at Moms With Apps, we like to say *Friday* is a good day to download. On Fridays, we bring your attention to specific developers and their apps. In return, they offer a free or specially priced app so you can try it out. So check back here on Fridays, or sign up on our email subscriber list (right hand side of this blog) for updates.

Why should I review an app?If you feel an app has made a difference in your home, or if you see areas where an app can improve, this is valuable information for the developer. Logging into iTunes to document your experience with the app is a way to communicate back to the developer and with other families who are interested in apps. Believe me, developers DO read the reviews! They love a good review, but most of all, they want their app to make a difference.

Where do I go from here? Let’s begin with some free apps to get you started. This will give you some diversity and selection on your iPad without any financial investment. Also, some apps do a “Lite” version, so if you really like an app, check on the App Store to see if they have a Lite version that you can preview for no charge.

I’d also like to mention some regular priced apps that have been nominated by members of Moms With Apps on the basis of having a positive impact on family life, along with interactive and engaging content: MathGirl Number Garden, Rocket Math, Animalia, Peepers, Stack the States, and Montessori Crosswords. We’ll elaborate more on these apps in the New Year, once we’ve had some teachers take a look at them.

APP FRIDAY LINK EXCHANGE: We hope this post helps you get started on the road to iLand. But it’s getting late folks – time to finish decorating before the guests arrive. I’ll leave you with our traditional App Friday Link Exchange, where everyone chimes in to tell you about their favorite app. To participate, include the app name in the Link Title, your email, and a URL to the app you’d like to promote. Most importantly, Happy Holidays and best wishes for this upcoming year!

Tapisodes Tells Their Story

Our feature this week is written by Christoper Lynd of Tapisodes. Earlier this year they came out with Charles Peattie’s Animal Alphabet which is a delightful illustrated, animated, and musical tale of animals from A to Z. Christopher shares the story of how they developed their app and what their goals are for future apps. Keep an eye on the blog as they will be on stage this week for App Friday!

Tapisodes’ journey to producing family-friendly apps is perhaps a little different to other brilliant app developers that are part of this group. Tapisodes was born out of BreakThru Films (A production company, best known for its film Peter and The Wolf) and my background is in television. What we have tried to do is let our film experience become a part of the apps we produce.

Over the last couple of years, the Tapisodes team and I became fascinated by the way young children are engaging and interacting with media in such a positive way. But we also saw a lot of content that really seemed to be churned out, presumably on the thinking that kids and families are less discerning. So we really wanted to change that, and make something that both kids and parents could enjoy together.

This inspiration behind Charles Peattie’s Animal Alphabet was to create something that parents and children could play with together. We didn’t want our app to be another piece of pass-back media. Most importantly, we wanted to make it look and feel as good as any app made for adults.

We spent a lot of time and effort making focusing on the quality of the graphics, sound, and user experience. Charles Peattie, the chap that did all of the drawing, also writes and illustrates the satirical cartoon strip Alex (published in the Telegraph) and a couple of other cartoons for publications like Private Eye – so his wit really comes across in the animation. We also included elements to engage the user in a creative way; such as a quiz, sound effects and music.  Here’s a link to our trailer if you’d like to see it: 

We’ve got many more kids apps and stories in the pipeline. ‘Grumpy Farm’ is our next one, and I think it’s something that young parents in particular are really going to enjoy. We’ve been experimenting with a style that involves live drawing under the camera and traditional animation, and we’re hoping to use young and up coming bands to sound track the app.

Thank you Christopher, can’t wait to hear the new tracks!

Want to Create a Storybook App? Great Idea, Just Mind Those Pitfalls!

Our feature this week is written by Omer Ginor, CEO and co-founder of Touchoo, which publishes highly-acclaimed children’s book-apps for touchscreen platforms. Omer delves into the market of Storybook Apps, an increasingly popular subject around here.  Just how, exactly, will an app-version of your child’s favorite storybook stand out in the crowd?

The market for family-focused apps is evolving rapidly. It wasn’t very long ago that letting your preschooler use apps on your iPhone was considered as geeky, irresponsible or even bad parenting. But things changed quite quickly. A year ago, 59% of iPhone-owning moms let kids use their iPhone, according to a research published in late 2009 by the mobile ad agency Greystipe.  Since last year, the market of educational apps for children has grown dramatically, and apps have been celebrated as beneficial to teaching math, promoting literacy and expanding vocabulary.

Storybooks made as apps covered pretty much the same distance: from being considered a suspicious novelty a couple of years ago, to being viewed as the promise of new life to the classic book-form. This trend received a very strong support with the arrival of tablet computers earlier this year. Soon after the iPad hit the shelves, it was made official: kid’s touchscreen storybook-apps are a hit.

It’s only natural that whenever demand arises in any given market, a rush to meet it soon follows. It seems that the rush to create new touchscreen storybook apps is even more dramatic than most, and I attribute this to two main reasons:

  • There are many aspiring children’s book creators who see an opportunity to quickly and easily deliver their creations to a large audience in an attractive format.
  • There are hundreds of thousands of wonderful storybooks already published in print format which “only” need to be adapted into the new format.

But this rush is exactly where the pitfalls lie: the promise of a large market and the availability of the source materials can translate into products that don’t offer a good user experience, and therefore have a limited chance of success.

To make things easy for those taking their first steps in creating storybook apps, I’ve collected a few golden rules for creating an attractive book-app, which would have a better chance to stand out in the crowd:

  1. Make a very important first decision: is what you intend to create a game or a book? Nothing wrong with either. However, the experience the user will be exposed to will be very different, and the app’s specification will require different features to be implemented.
  2. Before you set out to create your book-app, decide on your target audience: is it meant for young toddlers or early readers? The user experience and the required features are rather different in both cases. Just remember that more is sometimes actually less…
  3. Stories can be too long. Depending on the age and the child, an experience of 10 to 15 minutes is a reasonable goal. If you have a long story – make sure you allow readers to return to where they left off.
  4.  Interactions which complement the storyline (help advance the narrative, reveal additional information, explain or demonstrate the text, etc.) create a fuller experience and make an interactive story different from a story-like game.
  5. Create a streamlined user experience which fits your target audience:
  • Avoid lengthy splash-screens which would make an impatient youngster itch to press the home button.
  • Make sure there are no text-based prompts in places which may be accessed by your young readers.
  • Avoid an excess number of buttons (do you really need that “info” button on every page?).
  • Allow for rapid-fire tapping without compromising the overall reading experience.
  • Avoid an excess use of buttons for younger children’s books.

Keeping these few tips in mind, you’re one step closer to creating a children’s book-app that would work.

App Friday: Black Friday Holiday Shopping

Hello Everyone! This weekend kicks off one of the biggest Holiday Shopping weekends of the year. For App Friday we will highlight family-friendly app promotions we’ve heard about for “Black Friday”.

SOME TIPS: First, keep in mind that even if you don’t own the iPhone/iPad/iPod touch just yet, you can still download apps to your iTunes accounts and then synch to a device later. So if you are expecting a new iDevice for the holidays, participating in these specially priced promotions would be a good way to build your digital app library in advance (Thanks Dawn from iPhone Birth Announcements for this suggestion). Second, apps make great gifts. Don’t forget to check out Rosie’s tips on How To Gift An App.

Here is what to look out for starting Friday November 26th:

New Holiday Beads from Let's Bead Friends, which is going FREE for Black Friday, Nov. 26th.

Jane from Let’s Bead Friends is setting her app to FREE for Black Friday November 26th, and her latest version has beads with holiday themes. This app can also be used as an educational tool for little ones eager to learn important pre-math skills like colors, shapes, and patterning.

Nathalie from Fun Educational Apps has been collecting a full line-up of app deals and descriptions. Her website would be a good place to start when planning your Black Friday downloads. If you are interested in ChorePad, Christmas Art for Kids, Night Before Christmas titles and more, make sure to visit Fun Educational Apps for details.

Also check out Cooliphoneipadapps.com for updates on Black Friday Specials. I’m seeing several fun promotions, including iCrayonMaker which will be ½ price.

Lorraine from My Little Suitcase is keeping her app FREE through Black Friday. Developed by three parents, My Little Suitcase encourages free choice and imaginary play in a fun travel theme.

The team at Vito Technology is setting all of their educational apps at a steep discount for Black Friday. Geo Walk for iPhone will be FREE, and their StarWalk and Solar Walk apps for iPhone and iPad will be only $.99.

Ruckus Media is setting Velveteen Rabbit and The Night Before Christmas FREE from Black Friday through Cyber Monday.

App Friday Link Exchange Do you know of any other apps or links to check out for this holiday shopping weekend? If so, please add it to our link exchange below. Include the link name, link URL, and email. Thanks for participating at Moms With Apps!

App Friday: Anniversary Celebration

Welcome to our most special App Friday yet! This week marks the one year anniversary of Moms with Apps. What IS Moms with Apps, you ask? We are a diverse group of mobile app developers who focus on creating family-friendly content, representing over 15 countries globally. We are moms, dads, aunts, uncles, grandmothers and individuals who care about the healthiest possible intersection of families and technology. Ideally, we want to see technology to open up more conversations, interactions and learning experiences – not less.

This week we are saying “Thank You” for taking an interest in family-friendly apps, for spreading the word about Moms with Apps, and for advocating creative ways technology can be used to make a daily difference. 

Season of Thanks

You are invited to join our celebration by leaving a comment on our blog today. What are you thankful for, and how have mobile apps made a difference for your family? We’ll do our best to call attention to your stories on our Facebook and Twitter pages throughout the weekend. Here are a couple of examples of how developers and individuals have expressed their “Season of Thanks” regarding mobile apps:

What’s coming?

App Friday: Next year we’ll continue our Weekly App Friday promotion. However, the specific type of promotion will be up to the featured developer. Some will continue to go FREE, others might offer a special discount, or an incentive like an iTunes Gift card. App Friday will have more options for developers, and a more diverse set of reasons to visit the site. We are open to feedback, so please keep us posted.

Sponsors: You’ll see more visibility from our Moms with Apps Leadership Sponsors. As you may or may not know, this is a volunteer organization. We run the blog, the forum, and the promotions from our own individual resources.  So extra special thanks to the following people for running initiatives to make Moms With Apps HAPPEN this year: Lorraine from My Busy Kit, Lynette from PicPocket Books, Scott from Weiner Family Studios, Robert from iRobert, Jon from mytales digital, Andrew from Baby Binks, Jane from Staytooned, Irina from AppGrade, and Stephanie from Let’s Go Chipper. The list is growing!

Seal of Approval: You’ll see Moms with Apps offering a “Seal of Approval” program to specific, compelling apps. We are currently developing the criteria, a nomination process, and a review board.

App Catalog: We will be launching a mobile app to showcase all of our family-friendly apps! Very exciting, stay tuned because it’s coming soon!

What’s in it for me?

Well, we can’t let you get away without a free download, right? OK, let’s get this party started. All offers apply to APP FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 19th. Apps will revert BACK to regular pricing after the promotion is over.

FREE for App Friday, 11/19: (if it’s not free right when the post goes live, don’t worry. Check back, sometimes it takes iTunes awhile to process the pricing adjustments).

My Little Suitcase, Leaf Jam, MathGirl Number Garden, Family Matters, Draw With Stars, Christmas Art for Kids, Funny Phone, Discover Farms, Tiny Garden, Tiny Ocean, Charles Peatties Animal Alphabet, Pocket Zoo, iHangMath, MazeArt, Papa Gatto, Mico, Oh Crumps!, Peterkin, In My Dreams, Miniville’s Balloon PopKids Coin Fun, Kids Time Fun, and more as they come on board.

PROMO CODES AND SPECIAL PRICING: Developers will be offering promo codes and/or special pricing via our Moms With Apps Facebook Page, our Link Exchange, and on our Blog Comments. Look out for posts from Kids Games Interactive, Tales2Go, My Tales Digital, Les Trois Elles, KwiqApps, Axiom Books, iDev Books, ChorePad, Match-A-Photo, MazeArtPlus, My Silly Sounds Farm, HomeRoutines, Snow Globe Maker Winter and more! Check back for updates throughout the day.

ANNIVERSARY LINK EXCHANGE  Do YOU have something special to share today? Is your app specially priced to celebrate our one year anniversary? Do you have a blog post to celebrate our Season of Thanks? Don’t be shy – share it so everyone can participate! Include your name or app name, URL, and email. Happy Anniversary Moms With Apps!

The World Of Apps: Helping You Find That Needle In The Haystack

Pick a child, any child that you know. Maybe they need some practice with math facts, or geography, or communication. You look at your iPhone and iPad, and hope to locate the “perfect” app to help with your situation. But where do you start? Some people ask friends or family members. Some head to app review sites. Some try the App Store.  You read the reviews, and download a few apps. Basically, you gamble. But you come away with your brain feeling like this:

The developers at Moms With Apps, many of who are parents and educators themselves, think there is a better way. Coming soon to your iPhone will be a Moms With Apps App Catalog, a mobile directory of apps broken down by category. Our goal is to meet your specific family needs with a specific list of apps, right at your fingertips.

So wish us luck. We’re working hard as parent-app-developer-volunteers, to pull this off. And while you’re at it, commend Lynette from PicPocketBooks for building this visual haystack, and Andrew at BabyBinks for coding an app solution that will make many families very, very  happy. Three cheers for another amazing year at Moms With Apps!