Apps I Like: The Three Little Pigs from Nosy Crow

There seem to be tons of versions of The Three Little Pigs in the App Store. Actually, there are 63 versions in the iPad category alone. Is there something special–something magical–about this folk tale, that makes it worthy of interpretation over and over again?

As it turns out, the magic isn’t actually in the story–it’s in the presentation. At least when the folks at Nosy Crow do it!

Nosy Crow is a small, independent publisher in the UK that makes both printed books and apps for kids up to age 14. The Three Little Pigs is their first app–and it’s a stunner. The app has earned the coveted Kirkus Star, and for good reason. The story is exactly as you remember it, but the interactivity that’s been built into the app is what’s so special.

Kids can touch the characters to prompt them to speak, flip them, and help them run faster (useful when the wolf is chasing the pigs). There’s a bunny who (I think) hides on every page, which provides a puzzle element to the story. The Three Little Pigs is also one of the only storybook apps that takes advantage of the iPad’s movement sensors (accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass)–as you tilt the device, the figures and objects seem to pop up off the background, and you can (to some extent) see behind and around them. It’s amazing!

The voices are wonderful too (all in lovely British accents), as is the music. The animation is amusing and appropriate to the story. There are several extras built in, like the ability to zoom in and out, shake to make objects fall, and you can even help the wolf blow down the houses by blowing into the device’s microphone.

Everything about this app is top-notch, and I have to say: it makes other app versions of the Three Little Pigs irrelevant. Nosy Crow has set the bar very high for storybook apps, which is great for both developers (this will push all of us to create better apps) and of course for kids. Get this fantastic app for $7.99 in the Apple App Store.

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