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Archive for the ‘Kids Apps’ Category

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Dear Friends, – by Brad Powers, Founder & CEO

April has been a tremendous month for Cupcake Digital Inc. and I’m extremely excited to share our exciting progress you.

App News:

April has not only been our strongest month for App production, but we continue to achieve top ranking positions for our releases on major distribution platforms.

In fact, yesterday Wubbzy’s Dance Party, an App released only this past Tuesday (4/23), achieved the “#1 Paid App” ranking for iPad in Apple iTunes books in just three days.

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Other April Releases Include:

pngApril 4: Wubbzy’s Magic School

In this feature-rich, deluxe storybook app, Wubbzy’s Magic School! After a day at Moo Moo the Magician’s Castle, the friends learn that magic really does happen when you believe in yourself and try your hardest.

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April 11: Wubbzy’s Space Adventure / Wubbzy en una Aventura Espacial

This is a very special release since it is our offering to include both an English and Spanish version within the same App.  Kids, parents, and caregivers now have the choice of language with which to listen to the narration or read the story themselves.

This initiative not only increases the addressable market for our Apps, but also expands our marketing capabilities.

We are currently working on adding a Spanish version to a series of English-only Apps in our existing library across all distribution channels.

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April 16: Animal Planet’s Hide and Seek Pets

Wubbzy’s Dance Party, an App released only this past Tuesday (4/23), achieved the “#1 Paid App” ranking for iPad in Apple iTunes books in just three days.

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This is our first App for Animal Planet marking the first property expansion for our library beyond Wow, Wow, Wubbzy.

We are extremely excited about both the sales generated and the reviews we have been getting.  Premium priced at $3.99, this App has already already reached the “#3 position” within HOT New Education Section on Amazon.

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Apr 25: Wubbzy’s Animal Coloring Book

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This marks the debut of our new coloring engine.  It will not only allow us to create “stand alone” coloring and activity books for all our properties, but it will also be integrated into all of our new Apps.
Looking Ahead:

Early May: Fraggle Rock “Fraggle Friends Forever”

This release will expand our App library to three active licensed properties.

As part of the preparations for its release, I have just returned from the 30th Anniversary Celebration for Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock in Los Angeles.  We have provided sneak peeks to several national media outlets. The feedback has been fantastic.

The App launch in early May will be supported by a significant media campaign in collaboration with the Henson organization.

In June: Strawberry Shortcake

We look forward to our first App release for American Greeting’s Strawberry Shortcake in June with great anticipation.

Strawberry Shortcake is an iconic children’s property and we are proud to be their licensed partner. This will be the fourth active licensed property in our growing App library.

Like all our properties, the launch of the Strawberry Shortcake App will be supported by a robust marketing campaign to increase sales rapidly.

Properties & Licensing Pipeline

We continue to make great progress in our property acquisition initiatives.  We are currently in the final stages of negotiation with several “A+” properties and will be making announcements about them shortly.

Continued Accolades for Cupcake Digital Apps

In addition to increased sales, the positive accolades for our Apps continue to keep pouring in.

We have received a tremendous amount of press with the release of our first dual language App, Wubbzy’s Space Adventure/ Wubbzy en una Aventura Espacial, both in online and traditional press.

We also continue to win awards from Famigo (a site that provides recommendations for kid-safe apps and content) and Appysmarts (a resource that helps parents choose the best apps for their kids).

For a full list of our reviews and awards please visit: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/testimonials/

Distribution Partnerships

One of the key stones of our marketing strategy is building strong relationships with our distribution partners.

Recent results of those relationships include:

1.  iTunes featuring Animal Planet Hide and Seek Pets and Wubbzy’s Dance Party in their New and Noteworthy section.

2.  iTunes also selected Wubbzy’s Pirate Treasure as a feature in a special “Apps for Preschool & Kindergarten” selection.

3.  Amazon also continue to feature Cupcake Digital Inc. Apps throughout their App store. Barnes & Noble is currently planning several “curated” mailings and site positions especially for us.

4.  New Position Paper Regarding Parental Guidelines for Children’s Apps

We are delighted to have recently published a new white paper based on an interview with Dr. Natascha Crandall, PH.D.  Dr. Crandall is a psychologist and educator with a special interest in enhancing children’s growth and development through the power of media. This paper explores Dr. Crandall’s findings on App use by children while also establishing a framework for the continuous improvement of our own Apps.

As part of the white paper we also included parent and caregiver guidelines for using Apps as a supplement to children’s learning.

To read the complete position paper, please visit:

http://www.cupcakedigital.com/blog/new-white-paper-features-dr-natachsa-crandall-on-apps-for-children/

Make Your Opinion Count: Download & Review a Cupcake App Today!

As always, if you have not already done so, please visit http://www.cupcakedigital.com/apps/ and click on the store icon of your choice (iTunes, Amazon, Google Play or Nook) to download our Apps on any mobile phone or tablet device.

Give it a test drive and make sure to write a review!

Encourage your friends, family and loved ones to do the same. Help us create a bigger viral buzz about the quality of our products.

Thank you for your on-going support! I will continue to update you on a regular basis.

In the meantime, please feel free to contact me anytime with questions or comments.

Sincerely,

Brad Powers

Chairman

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Leading App Developer Cupcake Digital Releases

Wubbzy’s Space Adventure, First in a Series of Spanish Language Enhanced Story Experiences

NEW YORK, NY (April 8, 2013) – Wubbzy’s Space Adventure, the first of Cupcake Digital’s popular enhanced story apps to give consumers the option of toggling between English and Spanish with the simple touch of a button, is now available on iTunes, Google Play, Amazon and for NOOK for $1.99, or as a free upgrade for those who have already downloaded the English-only version. It is an important initiative for the company to provide these story experiences for young children and parents who want high-quality apps in Spanish. By giving parents this choice, the company is meeting several objectives: supporting the needs of parents who want to experience the apps in their native tongue, providing a tool for bilingual parents who want their kids to practice Spanish and giving children a way to practice some basic language skills.  The Spanish narration and individually highlighted words in the app are designed specifically for teaching the basics of spelling and vocabulary and could be used to practice the language.

“We are incredibly excited to share our wonderful array of apps in Spanish,” said Brad Powers, Chairman of Cupcake Digital. “My wife is Hispanic and we had the idea that an app available in English and Spanish might be a good way to get my son excited about the language. When I was searching for Spanish language apps for him, I found there was very limited to no availability for the kinds of apps he would like. We recognized a need, and felt it was a choice we wanted to give consumers. We have made it our goal that every one of our story apps will be followed closely by a Spanish version, and we look forward to making them available in other languages as well.”

Wow! Wow! features include:

·      Now bi-lingual (English and Spanish): Being able to hear the same story in two languages allows for natural language acquisition through hearing a familiar story in another language

·      Three reading modes: Just a Book, Read to Me and Read & Play

·      Fun mini-games within the story

·      Three original sing-a-long music videos taken from the popular EmmyÒ Award-winning series

·      Coloring pages with scenes straight from the story

·      A Grown-Up’s Corner to guide parents, teachers and caregivers in discussing the story with kids

Wubbzy’s vibrant and exciting adventures in other top-rated apps will soon be available in Spanish, including Wubbzy’s Pirate Treasure, Wubbzy’s Train Adventure and Wubbzy’s Dinosaur Adventure and others. Wubbzy and friends are also interacting with Spanish-speaking fans on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest as iWubbzy, iDaizy, iWidget and iWalden.

English Trailer with Intro:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7pbdWVxM9Lw

Spanish Trailer with intro:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YEOIJWBmjqs

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About Cupcake Digital

Cupcake Digital, Inc. was established in June 2012 with the intent of transforming children’s entertainment properties into deluxe story experiences infused with educational elements.    Its first venture into digital applications was based on the EmmyÒ Award-winning television series “Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!Ò”  These apps immediately rose to # 1 and # 3 among children’s book apps on Amazon and iTunes respectively.  Since then, every subsequent children’s app created by Cupcake Digital has achieved a top 10 ranking on Amazon.  Headquartered in NYC, Cupcake Digital was founded by proven professionals in the fields of technology, family entertainment, publishing and brand marketing.  In October of 2012, Cupcake Digital received its first round of private funding and has since gone on to partner with additional major children’s entertainment properties.  For more information about Cupcake Digital Inc., please visit www.cupcakedigital.com.

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UnknownDear Friends,

I’m happy to send this update on the exciting progress at Cupcake Digital, Inc.

Release of New Apps

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March has seen the release of several new apps including Wubbzy, The Superhero, one of our best apps to date. In addition to our new Common Core activities, this title also includes an addictive game hidden within the story. The first two people to find the game and send me a screen shot will get a $25.00 iTunes gift card (Cupcake employees are exempt). Please check it out: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/apps/wubbzy-the-superhero/

We have also released our first faith-based storybook, He is Risen: The Easter Story, for Nest Family apps. To learn more, click here: http://nestfamilyapps.com/press-and-media/

Please watch later this month for more releases, including our first Animal Planet title.

Properties & Pipeline

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I am delighted to announce our partnership with Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock animated series. Please see our latest press release: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/blog/the-jim-henson-company-licenses-cupcake-digital-to-capture-the-magic-of-classic-fraggle-rock-animated-episode-reimagined-as-enhanced-story-apps/

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I am also proud to announce our partnership with American Greeting’s Strawberry Shortcake. The team is already working on our first Strawberry Shortcake app. I will be sending more news on this property soon.
Continued Accolades for Cupcake Digital Apps

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I am happy to report that four of our children’s apps were named Parents’ Choice Award winners. Specifically: Wubbzy’s Pirate Treasure; Wubbzy’s Space Adventure; Wubbzy’s The Night Before Christmas; and Wubbzy’s Train Adventure.

The Parents’ Choice Foundation is the nation’s oldest nonprofit guide to quality children’s media and toys. Parents’ Choice Award Seals are internationally recognized and respected icons of quality. The Foundation’s product evaluation process addresses: developmentally appropriate content and challenges; design and function; educational value; long-term play value; and benefits to a child’s social and emotional growth and well being.

Cupcake Digital has also been lauded as one of the top app companies, winning awards like the AppySmart’s Editor’s Favorite for Wubbzy’s Fire Engine, Wubbzy’s Night Before Christmas, and Wubbzy’s Space Adventure and garnering dozens of favorable reviews including iPad Kids, Jellybeans Tunes, Appolicious, Rock-A-Bye Parents, AOL Tech, Wired and many more.

Distribution Partnerships

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On Friday, March 22, 2013, Wubbzy’s Space Adventure was a top feature in the special free app of the day (“FAD”) promotion for the 2013 anniversary of the Amazon apps platform in the US and EU. We’re very excited about this promotion, and look forward to seeing more customers download this app!

This is the third month in a row that Amazon has featured one of our apps. So far we have enjoyed over 136,000 downloads as a result of this partnership. For more information please visit: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/blog/cupcake-digitals-selection-as-amazons-free-app-of-the-day/

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Our apps have also been prominently featured by Barnes & Noble via e-mail blasts and online for the NOOK tablets. For more information please visit: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/blog/wubbzy-interactive-storybook-app-featured-on-nook-advertisement/
In the upcoming weeks and months I will continue to update you our partnerships with our distribution partners.

Social Responsibly

Be sure to read our latest positioning paper discussing our commitment to social responsibility in the development of entertainment-based children’s apps and how we conduct business. One of Cupcake Digital’s guiding principles is to create apps that balance fun and entertainment with the priorities of safety, privacy and education. To learn more, please visit: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/blog/cupcake-digitals-commitment-to-excellent-and-educational-apps-for-children/

In addition to the positioning paper, we are adding a grown-up’s section to our website. This section provides caregivers with additional fun and educational activities to complement our apps. We have also included a Parent’s Guide that informs caregivers how Cupcake Digital’s apps are designed to be part of a child’s learning and growth process. The grown-up’s section will be updated on an ongoing basis. Plus, we’ll soon be featuring an educator’s guide. For more information, please visit: http://www.cupcakedigital.com/grown-ups-corner/

Make Your Opinion Count: Download & Review a Cupcake App Today

As always, if you have not already done so, please visit http://www.cupcakedigital.com/apps/ and click on the store icon of your choice (iTunes, Amazon, Google Play or Nook) to download our apps on any mobile phone or tablet device.

Give it a test drive and make sure to write a review! Encourage your friends, family and loved ones to do the same. Help us create a bigger viral buzz about the quality of our products.

Thank you for your support! I will continue to update you on a regular basis. In the meantime, please feel free to contact me anytime with questions or comments.

Sincerely,

Brad Powers

Chairman

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Cupcake Digital Infuses Educational Elements into its Children’s Apps

by Brad Powers, CEO & Founder

November, 2012

Since Apple began taking pre-orders for the first-generation iPad in March of 2010, the landscape of tablets has not only transformed dramatically, but also given birth to a new industry: deluxe storybook apps.  Since Cupcake Digital’s inception, the company has been at the forefront of the industry in the development of exciting, high quality apps that meet the demands of: children, parents, caregivers and educators.  Our apps have been consistently top-ranked among children’s app ratings on Amazon, iTunes and Common Sense Media.  Maintaining a lead in this highly competitive market requires ongoing innovation and a clear focus on exceeding the needs of the market.  To that end, we are adding specific learning components to every app we introduce to further enhance the quality of our product offering and, as a result, increase our market share and build brand loyalty.  The following positioning paper outlines our rationale in the selection of educational elements based on new, nationwide educational standards and describes how they will be infused into our current and future products.

Objective:

By collaborating with education consultants and aligning with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), Cupcake Digital has taken important steps to enhance the educational value of its product offering.  These standards are a set of educational guidelines that are being adopted across the nation to help teachers ensure their students have the skills and knowledge they need to be successful by providing clear goals for student learning at each grade level. Parents, caregivers and teachers can feel confident that our apps help prepare preschool and elementary school children for what will be required of them.

The objective of this position paper is to demonstrate the importance of infusing educational elements into our current and future children’s apps and to show how those elements will be integrated.

It is the first in a series that will provide on-going updates.

Background

A quick look around us – in homes, on the street, in restaurants and on airplanes – demonstrates the vast proliferation of tablets and smart phones. For many young children today, interaction with mobile “apps” will be their first introduction to entertainment and learning.

Parents choose to use apps in different ways and for different purposes: to occupy a child at the dinner table; to read a bedtime story together; to play games that expand their knowledge and advance their fine motor skills; to engage, entertain and just have fun.

At Cupcake Digital, we believe that however apps are used, we can harness this new medium to deliver rewarding experiences on a spectrum of levels for young children.

Cupcake Digital’s Mission

Cupcake Digital stands at the forefront of a new medium:  mobile apps for kids.  We take this responsibility seriously and will explain our mission and our methodology as a company in this document.

We are first and foremost in the business of kids’ entertainment. Our apps are designed to provide fun and help bring children and caregivers together.   As a thoughtful and caring company, we also see an opportunity to deliver not only a fun and entertaining experience to children, but also an enriching and educational one

We think broadly about developing our products with multiple opportunities for learning  — providing a playful introduction to the worlds of reading and knowledge, imagination and creativity, early critical thinking and building of mathematics skills.

The power of play is limitless. It is the intention of Cupcake Digital to use it wisely and responsibly for the benefit of young children and their development.  While having fun with an app, a child can also become better prepared for success when he or she reaches kindergarten, or greater success if he or she is already in school.

Our Approach

We infuse learning moments into the very fabric of our apps.  From the inception of our company, we have engaged educational consultants to work with us on

age-appropriate activities that spark the imagination and foster development of

pre-school/early elementary level basics.

We test our learning propositions and continue to refine and improve them based on the feedback we get. (And, in the case of existing apps, to update and enhance them on an ongoing basis.)

We are a company of parents, and caregivers with a commitment to delivering positive app experiences to our own children.   We care deeply about how children interact with our apps and how they benefit from them.

We make a collective effort toward continuous improvement of our products and are investing in Common Core principles to maximize that benefit.

By partnering with professionals in the fields of education and children’s entertainment, as well as developmental experts and specialists in CCSS, we are developing fun activities in each of our apps that prompt educational engagement and help teach skills and build knowledge.

Some examples of Common Core activities involve tracing letters, adding numbers of objects, identifying colors and shapes, learning letter and word sounds, or other age-appropriate learning experiences.

In the process of transcreating existing media properties – such as the Emmy award winning Nick Jr. “Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!” animated series – into deluxe story experiences, we will integrate activities that are consistent with CCSS into games and additional sections outside of the narrative.

In the case of apps based on Discovery Network’s Animal Planet, we will infuse each app with Common Core Standards in a way that promises to delight young children.

“A further benefit of these apps, “ says Cristina Kaviani Johnson, M.A., Curriculum Consultant, “is that parents and caregivers will recognize the value of these activities and the various opportunities to tailor them to their own children’s needs and interests.”

Every app includes a “Just the Book” mode that allows caregivers to turn off the digital activities (games, sounds, videos, etc.) and focus a child’s attention purely on the words and story. This mode is particularly effective for a child who is learning to read and allows parents and caregivers to share the simple pleasure of just reading a book together quietly.

At the end of each app, caregivers will also find a section called “Grown-Up’s Corner.”  It provides questions and conversation starters related to the story to share with a child to help develop listening and comprehension skills.

A Common Core Corner will review and reinforce skills learned in each app; provide additional activity suggestions to engage in with a child to practice the learning ideas put forth in the app; and lay out each learning zone to help parents understand the various Common Core standards the app is addressing. It will also provide tips on how to prepare a child for his or her first school year(s) and makes getting ready for the new kindergarten standards simple and FUN.

A Vocabulary Builder section accompanies each app to reinforce new words a child has learned.

“Cupcake Digital produces apps that will be infused with a variety of learning experiences from the Common Core Standards curricula, without ever losing sight of our desire to enchant and inspire children along the way,” says Susan Miller, children’s industry veteran and President of Cupcake Digital.

“Our apps give parents a good feeling about how their children are using mobile technology.  They combine play with learning to deliver an enriching and entertaining experience parents can tailor to a child’s needs,” states Neil Friedman, Cupcake Digital Board Member, former Mattel Brands’ President, and former President of US Operations for Toys ‘R’ Us.

It is not our intention to “teach” children in all elements of the CCSS, but to lay the groundwork for some of the key building blocks through familiar, beloved entertainment characters, brands and properties.

As we develop new apps, we will continue to seek exciting ways to enhance the experience for children and give them a learning advantage.

While we understand the power of apps to entertain and teach, we are also aware that technology is a tool that needs to be used wisely.  Equally important to a child’s development is face-to-face communication. In both the Grown Up’s Corner and the Common Core Corner, our apps suggest fun activities designed to engage children “off-screen” in thoughtful discussions, as well as pencil- or crayon-to-paper skill-building exercises.

Please visit http://www.cupcakedigital.com for future updates.

About Cupcake Digital Inc.

Cupcake Digital, Inc. was established in June 2012 with the intent of transforming children’s entertainment properties into deluxe story experiences infused with educational elements.    Its first venture into digital applications was based on the Emmy Award-winning television series “Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!”  The app immediately rose to # 1 and # 3 among children’s book apps on Amazon and iTunes respectively.  Since then, every subsequent children’s storybook app created by Cupcake Digital has achieved a top 10 rating on Amazon.  Headquartered in NYC, Cupcake Digital was founded by proven professionals in the fields of technology, family entertainment, publishing and brand marketing.  In October of 2012, Cupcake Digital received its first round of private funding and has since gone on to partner with additional major children’s entertainment properties.  For more information about Cupcake Digital Inc., please contact Carmen Hernandez at pr@cupcakedigital.com or visit www.cupcakedigital.com.

 

 

 

 

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Wubbzy’s Pirate Treasure

Kooky Kostume Kreator

Wubbzy’s Space Adventure

In a recent video, Carmen Hernandez of Cupcake Digital discusses how story apps for kids are great educational tools when used as part of an overall approach to education in the home. She also discusses the company’s approach to app development and marketing.

Hernandez is vice president of marketing and communications for Cupcake Digital, a digital media company that develops deluxe storybook and interactive game apps for preschool and elementary age kids, based on existing entertainment properties such as the Emmy Award-winning TV series “Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!” and Animal Planet. These apps enable children to have fun learning while they play with tablets, smartphones or e-readers.

Hernandez explains,

“When we look at an app or the idea of an app, we look not only at the narrative and the story, but we also look at the educational components, which is why it’s been really important to us to involve experts in early childhood education so that we work as a team.”

Wubbzy Grown-Up’s Corner

She says that the company’s ultimate objective is to go beyond the app’s development. For example, every “Wow! Wow! Wubbzy!” app has a marketing ecosystem built around it, which is something that can be great for parents who want to take interact with their children beyond the app itself. Parents can go to iWubbzy.com and onto social media platforms like Facebook to download free activities and videos they can experience with their children.

At the end of every Wubbzy app, Cupcake Digital includes a “Grown-Up’s Corner” as a guide to help parents have meaningful conversations with their kids after reading the storybook or playing with the games. Those questions are vetted by experts in early childhood education to make certain they are capturing the conversation points that will most benefit kids.

Hernandez’s 6-year-old daughter is one of Cupcake Digital’s “quality assurance experts.” She says her daughter loves to be part of the company:

“It’s really been fun for her to be one of our quality assurance experts. These apps, at the end of the day–while parents are making the purchasing decisions–they have to entertain kids. And so if they don’t entertain our kids, they aren’t going to entertain other kids. So we get our kids involved in the process of developing the app and reading it before it ever is seen by anyone outside of our company.”

View the full video below:

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