May 29, 2013
Penguin today announces the launch of an experimental app that encourages families to share storytime together in a new and interactive way, no matter where they are in the world.
Bringing the classic Ladybird tale Three Billy Goats Gruff to life, the Storytime Hangout app for Google+ augments special masks over the video feed in Google Hangouts, putting people at the heart of the storytelling experience, despite being in different locations. Children will see themselves transformed into their favourite characters and can act out the story while they read along with their parents, with the text displayed on screen. The app was developed by BBH London, a creative advertising agency. A video about the app can be seen here: www.youtube.com/watch?v=f1WNY9T9ja8
Anna Rafferty, MD of Penguin Digital, said “The experience of reading with children is so much more than just the text and the pictures on the page. It's the sound effects, the voices and the funny faces pulled when acting out a character that make it magical - and this app does that in a new and exciting way. While nothing will ever replace the act of snuggling up with a book and reading a story with a child, we're using technology to give it a twist, enabling it to happen at long-distances, and connecting stories and readers as Penguin has always done"
Greg Titica, Creative Director at BBH said: “Technology can be seen as the biggest enemy of modern days families, with every member glued to their own individual screen. Or technology can be seen as the most powerful tool, bringing every member of the family together. I would be happy if this app could generate lots of beautiful moments and tons of sweet dreams.”
For more information about Storytime Hangout, visit www.storytimehangout.com or follow Penguin on Google+ at https://plus.google.com/+PenguinBooksUK