Gadgets & AppsStart-Ups

Building Apps for Kids

Frankie Thevenot

Thinking of creating  apps for kids? Well the MTN appathon is on, you can try it out.  Here are a few pointers. Most kids these days own mobile devices and they have more time to explore, discover and experience them. So let’s get started.

First of all, you have to understand your target audience. What’s the point if the kids don’t get it?  Most apps for kids that appeal to them have to be highly visual, entertaining, musical and interactive. If the parents are the ones who will download they’ll probably look for the same thing. So if you want to appeal to parents, hence a wider audience, it has to be educational most importantly.

There is a growing demand for interactive and educational apps for kids
There is a growing demand for interactive and educational apps for kids

Let’s move on to the splash screen. It has to be short, bright and colourful and last only a few seconds to keep the child user engaged. Patience is not a virtue. If you really must take longer then at least throw in some music or animation. Keep the kidos engaged!

Think about who you’re dealing with.  With kids younger than 5, you don’t need menu options like you would make for adults. Make it clear and easy, preferably let them only have to tap or click once to get to the desired function.

Clumsy. That’s what kids are most of the time. Make sure your app has clear settings that allow kids to navigate in case they accidentally press on another function, so make sure the “BACK” arrow or button is very clear.  Anyway, since most of your app buyers will be parents, they will most obviously be in charge of the settings and all.

Kids are attracted to things that pop half the time. Make sure your app has features that do that.  It has to catch their eye every single time. Create a surreal experience that appeals to any child’s fantasies but they still have to learn a realistic value from it.

How can I not stress the need to feel like a winner? Kids love to get rewards for their efforts so try as much as you can to incorporate scores or points for every achievement or level they succeed in. It will create an immense urge to do better, score/get more points and get ahead. Take note how curious and adventurous children naturally are and make use of that knowledge when making your app. They will keep coming back for more.

Don’t forget to make it compatible with all types of operating systems (OS) to increase your market. Good luck!











Tech Blogger & Marketer.