Posted on January 10, 2019 by staff

Smart storytelling teddy Woobo ‘could help kids in therapy’


The makers of a smart storytelling teddy say it could help children in therapy after unveiling Woobo Mini at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The original Woobo companion robot, already available on the market, is a high-tech playmate for children aged 4-8 described as a ‘smart launchpad for exploring the world’.

Woobo can answer questions in a kid-friendly way and play physical and creative games that make children laugh while offering friendly reminders about healthy habits such as how long to brush their teeth.

In 2017 the product was 443 per cent overfunded on Indiegogo, raising $338,000. Due to demand for a toy for younger children, the Woobo Mini (pictured below) was developed after raising more than $20,000 on the crowdfunding platform.

The ‘cuddly storyteller’ is a smart story and music player with night lights and aimed at babies and toddlers aged 0-4. Parents can choose the songs and music they want it to play from an accompanying app.

Tejasvi Desai, digital communications strategist at Woobo, told BusinessCloud that the artificial intelligence-powered Mini is currently being marketed as a consumer toy – but that partnerships are on the horizon.

“We’re open to partnerships in the education as well as medical sectors – especially hospitals and therapy centres,” she said. “We have had a lot of interest from people who work with children in therapy.

“One of the really unique features of Woobo is that as we own and develop our own software and can update and customise to fit the needs of different sectors.”

Woobo closed another round of funding with GSR Ventures in 2018 and is looking to take on further investment as it develops Woobo+, which is geared towards an older age range of kids.

“The main challenge we are currently encountering as we scale is to increase content creation multi-fold without compromising on the quality,” added Desai.

“We have very high standards and a unique vision of how we want children to learn and absorb our content, so in moving fast, we want to ensure the quality of our content doesn’t suffer.”

The Chinese version of the toys will launch this year, with the UK and Canada set to follow in 2020.