Mobile Art a Japanese design firm have combined an iPhone app which works in conjunction with an ordinary cardboard picture book to create a fun multi-media book experience for children. The new book, entitled PhoneBook Ride! Ride! (aka PhoneBook Popo and Momo Ride!) is a hybrid book which sits the iPhone in the centre of traditional picture book. The tagline for the project is “Analog On The Digital Technology” and it combines all the whizz bang of the iPhone with “old school” paper books.
When you purchase the book, users can download the free PhoneBook – Ride! Ride! app from the App Store. The iPhone is placed in the centre of the book and held in place with foam inserts. The iPhone app plays interactive animated sequences which match the cartoon style of the outer printed artwork.
There are six different sections in the app which match up with the pages of the book. Whether the book is strictly necessary is another question, but it does look very sweet.
Mobile Art, the makers say the challenge for the creation of their “Phone Book” was to make it into a communication tool between parent and child. In this time of “one display for one person”, the idea for the Phone Book was to allow family members to enjoy it together like a traditional reading book which might be read at bedtime.
It’s not clear yet if the book will be made available outside of Japan, but this type of app and book combo could be the match made in heaven for designers, developers and illustrators interested in both print and screen-based work.
Jennifer Farley is a designer, illustrator and design instructor based in Ireland. She writes about design and illustration on her blog at Laughing Lion Design.
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