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Google buys kids app maker Launchpad Toys

In a deal that marks a potentially major step into the kids space, Google has acquired Launchpad Toys, a San Francisco, California-based kids app and toy developer.
February 5, 2015

In a deal that marks a potentially major step into the kids space, Google has acquired Launchpad Toys, a San Francisco, California-based kids app and toy developer.

Launchpad announced the news through a post on its site on Wednesday, saying “We’re proud to announce that our little toy company is pairing up with a great big team of tinkerers to empower gajillions of playful storytellers around the world.” Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Launchpad has a number of kids apps in its roster, including augmented reality app TeleStory and Toontastic, a storytelling tool for iPads that lets kids draw, animate and narrate their own cartoons.

Also working with customized content, Telestory lets kids film and broadcast their own TV shows, using augmented reality through which they can star in their own clips.

Following Google’s purchase, Launchpad’s apps are now free on the Apple App Store. Notably, the company has not created Android versions of its apps.

While both companies are remaining tight-lipped about future plans, Launchpad Toys teased in its blog post that “Launchpad Toys is joining Google to create even more amazing creativity tools for kids. Today, we’ve made our digital toys and tools free to creative kids everywhere. Tomorrow… well, we can’t wait to share.”

Both apps hold potential for Google to expand into the kids mobile space. The acquisition certainly falls in line with Google’s current plan to revamp several of its products for kids 12 and under.

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