Smart Apps For Android: Review: My Playhome Stores (best Android apps for kids) - FREE for a limited time starting 04/01/2014

Monday, March 31, 2014

Review: My Playhome Stores (best Android apps for kids) - FREE for a limited time starting 04/01/2014




Bottom line: My PlayHome Stores is the follow up to the fabulous My Playhome by Shimon Young. Your little one can take the My Playhome family out on the town to do a little shopping, then stop for ice cream on the way home. The role-playing opportunities and creative play situations that this app encourages are really among the best I've encountered in an app for young children.

Price: $1.99 normally, but FREE beginning 04/01/14 for a limited time in the Amazon App Store.

Size:  35.5 MB

Number of Activities: Four shops total (virtually unlimited play within)


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No ads, no in-app purchases, no external links
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If you would like to download My PlayHome Stores, please use the handy link below so they'll know who sent you.

$1.99 normal price (FREE for a limited time beginning 04/01/2014 on the Amazon App Store)


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About the app: The My PlayHome apps are what I've come to think of as "digital dollhouses".  If you haven't tried out the original My Playhome, I encourage you to do so.  It is really a delight in itself, and now My PlayHome Stores takes things to the next level. The details in this app are really what helps to make it a top app.
The same family of characters from the original app follow us on to our day in the shops. (A quick sidebar here: I cannot begin to tell you how refreshing it is to have a variety of cultural options available to choose from when building your families.)
The first shop we come to is a cute little fashion boutique. Before you head into the store, you can make a little stop at the ATM to fill up you pocketbook for your shopping spree. Once in the store, you can browse the racks of clothes and buy bags full of things to fill your closet at home.  A neat detail (at least to me) is that if you pick up an outfit and drop it, it lands already folded.  How can I get this to happen at my house?
After clothes shopping, head on over to the ice cream shop. Your kiddo can build ice cream cones as tall as they are. At least I am assuming that they can... I started to feel a little bit piggy when I made mine four scoops high, so I stopped there. You can fix the whole family a load of slushies, sit outside in the heart-backed chairs, and watch the baby as he rides the little ice-cream truck ride. The fact that the ride features "The Entertainer" as its music is particularly delightful.
After those two fun stops, it's time to get on with our errands. The produce shop is our next stop to pick up a load of healthy fruits and veggies. Your little one can even make up their own juice concoctions in the juicer. Fun!
Finally to the supermarket to stock up the pantry. You can push your shopping cart along and fill it with all the supplies you need, then head on over to the check out line to pay for your bounty.  And in the My PlayHome grocery store there are only paper grocery sacks.  No plastic to fill up landfills!
As I mentioned above, it really is the details that make this app so special.  Pretty much anything that could work does work.  Each shop has its own background sounds or music (and the music can be turned off by tapping the speakers). Doors all open and close. Switches all work and make something happen. If you turn off a light, the room will darken. In the supermarket, the fluorescent lighting even takes a moment to flicker back on, much like any fluorescent light would.  It's these little details that make it so enjoyable.
Apart from My PlayHome Stores just generally being an enjoyable app.  It is also an extremely well designed one.  The play is intuitive for your tots, and all of the functions work seamlessly.

Suggestions for updates: The developer should just keep doing more of the same.  They could always add more stores - a bookshop and a toy store perhaps? But they definitely have a good thing going.  So, my suggestion is...don't change a thing, just give us more of it.

Summary: If you've got younger children, or other kids who can benefit from role-playing type apps, this is a must have app.  The fact that you can get it for free for a limited time (starting 04/01/14, only on Amazon) means that you should drop what you are doing and run get it now.

P.S. I do not have the original My PlayHome on my Kindle, but I do have it on all of the iDevices that we have in our house, so I only tested this next function I am about to mention on those devices. But it's so cool I had to mention it. My PlayHome Store works together with the original My PlayHome.  Meaning you can take your purchases home and fill up your closets and/or pantry.  Cool, huh?


Bonus:  Ellie made a wonderful demo video for the app for our sister site (www.smartappsforkids.com). I know the video is for iOS, but it functions just the same on my Kindle.  And Ellie is delightful to listen to. So, enjoy:


*****


Kelli hopes the next My PlayHome app takes us to the farm.












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