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Storybutton Player Provides Screenless Kid-Friendly Audio Entertainment.

Storybutton, a new audio player for children, features more than 10,000 stories designed for kids ages 5-12 and access to a new kid-focused podcast network thanks to a partnership with iHeartMedia. The device was created by kid-friendly podcaster “Mr Jim” (Jim Jacob).

The player, which is currently only available on the Storybutton website, sells for $99.99 and features an easy-to-use design, an internal rechargeable battery, and a headphone jack.

The company has sold 1,500 units across the U.S. and Canada, Tech Crunch reports, with an expansion to Australia and the U.K. slotted for next year.

Content includes podcasts, audiobooks, bedtime stories, educational material, animal information, and an option to build playlists.

The device is designed to appeal to parents who want their kids to have a screenless device to entertain themselves. Storybutton says that 85% of kids use their parent's smartphone to listen to podcasts.

The company plans to produce nine original podcasts over the next year and a half. The first two seasons of each show will be available everywhere, and the third season will be exclusive to Storybutton users.

The iHeartMedia partnership includes the podcasts “Koala Moon,” “Unicorn Bedtime Stories” and Mr. Jim’s portfolio of shows— “Bedtime Stories with Mr. Jim,” “Spyology Squad,” “Kids Short Stories” and “Kids Animal Stories.”

As part of the deal, iHeartMedia will provide promotional media, ad sales, and operational support to all the kid podcasts that Storybutton signs to its network.

Jacob told Tech Crunch that the iHeart deal enables Storybutton “to bring in other kid podcasts to safely grow and monetize their shows. That’s one of the big challenges in kid podcasting today; a lot of creators and studios have really great shows, but monetizing it in a compliant and safe way is very difficult.”

The company, which is investing $500,000 in the venture, has also signed 25 additional kid podcasts not on the iHeartMedia/Storybutton network, including shows from GoKidGo, ABF Creative, and Lingokids.

Unlike other kid-friendly audio players such as Yoto and Tonies, Storybutton’s content is free.

The company plans to launch a mobile app called Storybutton Plus, which will allow parents to upload or remove podcasts and other audio content to the player from their mobile device. Storybutton is also working on AI-powered features that will enable users to create content.

“Over the next five years, we aim to make Storybutton the go-to off-screen platform for audio content globally,” Jacob explained. “With continued product enhancements and content partnerships, we envision a future where everyone has access to a world of imagination, education, and wellness through Storybutton.”

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