Just when you think technology is at a stand-still, someone invents some other neat device or product that totally blows your brain cells, like this: a hi-tech pair of pyjamas that can read your kids a bedtime story. All you need to do is download a free app and scan one of the clusters of dots on the pyjamas, it will then read the story aloud and it can also sing lullabies. Getting children to go to bed can be a battle in and of itself. First you have to get them into their pyjamas and then you have to read them a story. But now there are Smart Pyjamas! These are the world’s first and only interactive bedtime clothing that will actually read your children a story.
Smart PJ's are the invention of Juan Murdoch who says “he was inspired by his six young children to come up with a way to make bedtime a little less stressful on parents”. There are currently two apps, available for iOS and Android. Each app has 47 different entries, coinciding with the unique dot patterns on the pyjamas. In the Smart PJ Stories app, it includes brief readings of Mother Goose, the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen classics. There's text too, so you or your child can mute the narrator and read along.
Murdoch says “I have six kids, ranging from 6 to 18. I don't know how many kids you have, but I can barely read a book to two children at once — I can't imagine keeping the attention of six. It just makes sense to invent something that provides a little extra bedtime help.”
Once Murdoch enlisted a developer, the pair first tried scanning QR codes — those square bricks of black and white that can direct your smartphone to a website — on the pyjamas, but they don't show up well on fabric. So the team “started from scratch” creating a dot pattern system reminiscent of Braille, that could be scanned much more easily.
Both the Smart PJs and the free apps were designed for kids to be able to use themselves; the scanning process had to be quick, said Murdoch. “Kids have a patience level of about 10 seconds. If something doesn't happen on an iPad or phone within a few seconds, they're on to something else.” He added, “The nice thing about these is they're instant.”
The world's first interactive pyjamas are available in blue for boys and pink for girls, in sizes up to age 8 and they retail at $25.
We want to know what you think of these new tech-inspired jammies for kids. Kind of lazy, or the smartest idea ever? Join the conversation!