Business

Once upon a time, a children’s book app got kids to read at record rates

In the land of FarFaria, little girls named Daisy befriend dangerous dragons and farm boys conquer giant sea monsters.

FarFaria is a popular electronic book app for children. Today, the company is celebrating its first birthday by announcing major milestones, “record setting” reading engagement, and its vision for the world of children’s literacy.

“It is obvious that getting children to read is important,” said Ajay Godhwani, the CEO of FarFaria developer Intuary. “We are delivering unlimited, high-quality content that is exciting for both children and their parents and encourages them to keep coming back for more.”

Godhwani said that kids are reading FarFaria stories at more than five times the national average each week. The app launched exactly a year ago, and since then kids and their parents have opened over 2 million stories, with 1 million read in the past month alone. Furthermore, 25 percent of subscribers read FarFaria stories every day.

The app offers readers places like “Fairy Tale Forest,” “Animal Kingdom” and “Sing Along City.” Entering any of these worlds presents stories that readers can explore as they choose. Comparisons to Netflix or Hulu come to mind, because the service is subscription-based and yields more content and variety than outright purchasing an e-book.

The popularity of the iPad led to an explosion of children’s e-books and educational apps. Kids are excited about playing with new technology, and the iPad opened up a world of opportunity for interactive content. Godhwani said that FarFaria is so successful because their team constantly adds new stories. The library is ever-expanding and currently holds 400 stories, with three to five added each week. Kids and parents don’t grow bored with it because it almost always has new lands to explore and stories to read.

Additionally, FarFaria adds new features regularly to enhance the reading experience. Earlier this year, FarFaria put in an interactive story browser, introduced more sing-along books, and rolled out a read-aloud feature. Now that it’s a 1 year old and growing fast, FarFaria plans to introduce single-story apps for the iPhone and iPad and introduce a rewards programs.

Intuary is based in San Francisco. Its other product, Verbally, helps people with nonverbal disabilities communicate.


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