Technology has taken over playtime. According to Common Sense Media, the number of kids who’ve used mobile devices has nearly doubled since 2011. Wondering what kids are actually doing on their tablets, laptops and smartphones? Well, they are most likely playing games (63 percent) or using apps (50 percent). It’s one thing for kids to play games on mobile devices, but if you ask us, it’s even cooler when they code their own games to play.
That’s why we were so jazzed to learn about Bitsbox, a subscription service that provides kids as young as seven years old with a monthly selection of app projects to inspire them to code. What kid wouldn’t be excited to get something new and fun in the mail each month? We’ve seen other apps like Tickle and Tynker aimed at teaching kids how to code, but Bitsbox is the first subscription service we’ve seen. It’s like Birchbox for the kiddie set.
Bitsbox was created by Scott Lininger and Aidan Chopra, two dads who met at Google before banding together to build Bitsbox to help their kids learn how to code. While Lininger and Chopra may not be “fashion dads,” they certainly win our vote for the coolest dads.
Bitsbox takes a “free play” approach to coding and provides kids with the option to pick and choose which apps they want to build. After typing in the provided code on the Bitsbox website’s virtual tablet, kids can customize their app by modifying the graphics, colors and sounds to make it totally their own. To play with their new app on a real tablet or other mobile device, all your kiddo needs to do is scan the QR code on their screen with their device’s camera.
We told you about Bitsbox’s Kickstarter campaign when it first launched — and now it has more than tripled its $45,000 goal, so it looks like Bitsbox will soon be coming to a mailbox near you and your favorite kid. For a pledge of $295, you can get your kid a year’s subscription to Bitsbox. Sure, kids are spending more time on mobile devices, but in this case, playtime on Bitsbox looks like time well spent.
What do you think about Bitsbox? Do you think the service can help the kiddo in your life learn how to code?