Kids Corner Review: My Beagle
My Beagle is a "create a dog" app aimed at young kids. The concept of this app is simple - you can create a picture of a dog with various...accessories (for lack of a better word) from a wide list of options. Starting the app is simple - you simply click on the play button and get brought to a blank slate with a generic beagle image. From there, using the dial on the left, you can choose various accessories or attributes - collars, food bowls, background, eye shape, etc. You get to design a beagle to your liking.
When creating your masterpiece, you choose each of the categories of accessory, and then can choose from different images by sliding a button left or right to show the options. For example, with background images, you can choose from some butterflies, some birds, some trees, etc. The wide variety of options means that there are plenty of ways to create a unique masterpiece on your iPhone.
When the image is finished, you can save it in either color format, or color and black and white. The black and white version is supposed to be for coloring it (printing out a coloring template). After it is saved to your picture roll you can download it to your computer to print it.
Note, the app description talks about printing it, which can be a little misleading. You can't do anything to print directly from the app - you still need to save the picture, download it, then print from your computer (which you can do with ANY image). You can, of course, also email the image to anyone as well.
This is a fun app for kids. My daughter had a good time creating a masterpiece which she promptly wanted to send to her gramma via email. Because of the wide range of options, she was able to create a wide array of pictures. Unfortunately, it is only possible to create from the beagle template. Another app (My Labrador) allows you to do the same things with a labrador puppy, but they are two different apps. It would be nice to simply have a "My Puppy" app that allows you to choose from different dogs.
One thing that would be great to add would be to have sound effects you can add - barking, birds chirping, growling, etc. That would add a new dimension to the app, especially if a child could activate sounds that are unique to each accesory simply by tapping the area on the image!
In the interest of full disclosure, I received a promo code to review this app. I also received one for My Labrador, but unfortunately I didn't use it in time and it expired.
Pros: Easy to use for kids, encourages creativity, allows for a coloring template to be created
Cons: Only one dog type per app
All in all, this is a fun little app for kids, and my daughter enjoyed it thoroughly. Older kids probably wouldn't get too much enjoyment from it. The design is simple and my daughter was able to pick it up very quickly. There are a lot of options, so kids presumably won't get tired of it too quickly. At $.99, the price is right and if you have a child from 2 to 7, I suggest giving it a shot. Four out of five stars.
* = No redeeming qualities or features, probably not worth it even if it is free
** = Few redeeming qualities, or is simply isn't worth the price
*** = Some good features but also some clear flaws.
**** = A solid app, worth the money if interested, a few flaws or problems or slightly overpriced
***** = Top of the line app, no problems or drawbacks.
Price is factored into the ratings. Ratings are lowered if I feel the price of the app outweighs the benefits/enjoyment/features it provides. Likewise, an app that is a good value for the money will have a higher rating.