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Brief Published: 18 Aug 2016

Campfire: Immersive Bedtime Stories

The Campfire app uses the Internet of Things to make bedtime storytelling an immersive experience

Washington-based start-up Freak’n Genius has launched a new app that uses voice recognition and the Internet of Things (IoT) to create an immersive bedtime story experience for parents and children.

Released in August 2016, the app, called Campfire, allows parents to pick experiences to accompany favourite book titles. It then uses machine-learning platform IBM Watson’s speech recognition function to follow along with the story and trigger audio that relates to the part of the book being read. The app also connects to IoT devices in the room – such as smart bulbs and fans – switching them on and off when certain words are spoken, further adding to the story’s specific atmosphere.

“We believe that with just the right combination of art and science, we can refresh the story experience, and create magical moments between parents and children around stories for years to come,” one of Campfire’s creators, David Wykes, told Geek Wire.

Campfire works on a subscription basis and users gain access for a recurring fee. The company is continuing to develop experiences for popular titles and also has a feature where users can create their own customised story experiences.

For more on how raising children is becoming a digital affair, see Decoding Digital Parents and The Business of Parenting.