by Robert van Alstyne
- After baby’s first steps comes … first emails? Parents eager to get their tots electronically communicating early are downloading Maily, a free iPad email app aimed at users as young as 4 years old.
- Maily’s image-rich interface allows kiddos to send virtual finger-paintings if they aren’t yet literate, making it easy for them to create emails featuring a combination of pre-created graphics, their own sketchings and iPad camera snaps.
- A picture-driven and easily parent-monitored in-box lets little ones send their mixed-media messages directly to friends and family by tapping the faces of intended recipients.
- Think Maily sounds preposterous? Think again. Tablet use among tiny ones is rapidly surging. A February 2012 Nielsen study found that 70% of children under age 12 who live in households with tablet devices use those tablets (BetaKit.com, 25 July 2012).
WHAT THIS MEANS TO BUSINESS
- As more of modern family life takes place on and between mobile devices, consumers are keen to make room at the tech-loving table for the youngest members of their families. Kiddie communication apps will find plenty of underserved users as parents who already are frequently turning over their tablets to pint-size offspring seek to provide age-appropriate experiences with the device.