Only three months after launching Axel's Chain Reaction, we started getting good news! Digital Book World Conference + Expo contacted us to let us know our app had been picked as a finalist for the Digital Book Awards 2014, in the App-children category. We attended the Conference January 13-15 in New York, and you can read about that in a separate post.
By mid January, we were chosen as one of the winners of the App Circus Online Competition, and were chosen as one of the Mobile Premier Awards 2014 finalist –a ceremony that will take place in during the World Mobile Congress in Barcelona, on February 24. We are very proud of this because, it was competing against all kinds of apps (productivity, photo, music apps, etc) and there wasn't a specific children's category. Additionally, it won over other apps that have received media coverage like Learning with Homer, or other educational apps by major publishing houses or brands.
Our indie book app, which earned Digital Book World’s ‘Quality Excellence Design’ seal for digital books, has also been awarded the Teachers With Apps Certified Badge of Approval for education apps that “prove exemplary in content, presentation, and execution, as well as overall user experience”.
We feel there is a recognition of the quality and paisntaking care that has gone into every detail of creation and production. WE also hope that the nature of its content and the uncommon themes our book covers have caught attention. It’s rare to find a children’s fiction book app that places a special needs kid at the center of a story about celebrating everyone’s talents, but even harder to find one where the promotion of creativity ties to both art and science.
Our book app was selected as ‘Editor’s Choice’ in the Best Apps For Kids review site, and as ‘Top Picks’ in the Smart Apps for Kids site. A factor we believe has been key in the appreciation we're getting, is that Axel’s Chain Reaction integrates interactions seamlessly into the storyline, and has educational content, video, hands-on activities and an open-ended creation game with objects.
Critic's opinions are great as validation, but user interest and feedback are paramount, because we create a children's book app for kids and hte adults that educate them. Axel’s Chain Reaction reached almost 5000 downloads in its first week out, and was ranked in the top 25 in forty-eight countries, either in the App Store’s ‘books’ category, or the ‘apps for ages 6 to 8’ category. Its originality sets it apart from the rest, in addition to its outstanding illustrations, and polished production.
Since it came out, our book app has received mostly 5 star ratings by users in the App Store. We've been getting feedback from therapists have been using it in class a springboard for social skills discussions about perseverance, acceptance, and bullying. Elementary teachers have found this a lovely resource for art class, as well as to promote conversations with kids about skills like planning, and lateral thinking. Parents have also commented on the value of its positive messages and praised the quality of its illustrations, while telling us how much their kids have enjoyed to book app.
We hope you share with your friends and colleagues this webpage, so more kids can meet Axel: we want all kids who feel different to know that they WILL be able to show their special talents to the world, and that they WILL make friends. We want them to keep a positive attitude and persevere past their challenges!