First Look: ‘Toy Story’ Read-Along App for iPad from Disney Digital Books

img_5544 Although it’ll still be another couple of days before anyone can actually experience them on the new iPad from Apple, the iPad apps floodgates opened today and Disney quickly debuted and previewed a slew of iPad exclusives from all across the Walt Disney Company family.

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Disney Leaps Onto iPad with Apps from Disney Interactive, Disney Publishing, ABC and ESPN

As part of its ongoing strategy to provide original creative content where and how consumers want it, Disney will offer applications from all of its businesses on the new Apple iPad.

The ABC Player app extends the reach of ABC.com’s full episode player onto the iPad. iPad users will have the ability to watch free, ad-supported episodes from approximately 20 popular ABC series through a wi-fi connection. The application will also allow iPad users to purchase downloads of episodes via the iTunes store. The ABC iPad app brings the full experience of ABC.com’s Emmy Award-winning full episode player to a touch-screen, handheld device for the first time. Additionally, the ABC.com site is now optimized for the iPad, complete with full-functionality for all its features, including short-form video.

Disney Publishing Worldwide has built two original “Toy Story” read-along apps for the iPad, both combining Disney stories and unique activities with cutting edge technology. Each “Toy Story” read-along is an immersive multimedia experience – the books feature video from the feature films, karaoke and voice record features, the voices of Tom Hanks and Tim Allen, songs from the movies, original games, and even an interactive coloring feature that lets kids finger-paint with up to 10 fingers on the screen. The “Toy Story” app is free and the “Toy Story 2” app is $8.99 and comes with a one month free subscription to disneydigitalbooks.com. In addition, new “Disney Princess,” “Phineas & Ferb,” “Winnie the Pooh” and “Toy Story 3” apps will go live on the iPad later this spring.

Disney Online has built a custom iPad version of its flagship website, Disney.com, which focuses on exclusive video content. iPad videos featured at launch include new scenes from highly-anticipated Disney films “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” and “Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time,” full-episodes of popular Disney Channel and Disney XD series “Hannah Montana,” “Wizards of Waverly Place,” “Suite Life on Deck” and “Phineas & Ferb,” and a new Muppets music video, “Stand by Me.”

“The iPad provides a very compelling consumer experience, and we are pleased to have new forms of original, interactive content on this great device,” said Bob Iger, President and CEO, The Walt Disney Company.

In addition to the ABC player and “Toy Story” read-along apps, Disney, ABC and ESPN will launch the following applications:

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Official ‘Dancing with the Stars’ iPhone App Returns for New Season with New Features

'Dancing with the Stars' for iPhone by ABC, Inc.After taking a hiatus from the Apple App store, Dancing with the Stars from ABC, Inc. returns to the store with an all new version.

Remaining free, version 2.0 of the app includes the following new features:

  • Additional voting option with “Click to Call”
  • Music and sound effects for the introduction and paddle feature
  • Push Notifications available for start of show & eliminations information
  • Facebook Connect option to post support for any dancer.

Have you ever wanted to reach out and touch a star? Now you can! All the excitement, glitter, and sexy spray-tanned talent you love to watch on Dancing With The Stars is literally IN YOUR HANDS thanks to your iPhone!

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Disney Interactive Releases ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Game for iPhone and iPod Touch

Alice In Wonderland – An Adventure Beyond The Mirror for the iPhone and iPod Touch by Disney Interactive StudiosDisney Interactive Studios has just launched the full Alice in Wonderland – An Adventure Beyond the Mirror video game for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

The official description for the game, which sells on the iTunes App store for $4.99 is as follows:

You’re invited to download a very important game!

Hurry, don’t be late! Be one of the first to download the new game inspired by the highly anticipated Disney film from Tim Burton. Play as Alice and solve a series of puzzles with help from the Mad Hatter, White Rabbit and other memorable characters from the movie. Explore a world filled with whimsical settings, optical illusions, challenging puzzles, and formidable adversaries.

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iPhone App Review: The Muppets Animal Drummer

The Muppets Animal Drummer for iPhone by Walt DisneyTitle: The Muppets Animal Drummer (link)
Publisher:
Walt Disney
Released:
December 15, 2009
Cost:
$1.99
iTouch?:
Yes
Pros: The Muppets; good graphics; great music and sounds; fun, addictive and simple gamplay
Cons: None
Review: From Disney Interactive Studios, Enorbus and the Muppets Studio comes The Muppets Animal Drummer, a rhythm based game that has its roots in the electronic board game Simon in which you must repeat Animal’s drumming sequence in (near) perfect rhythm, so it differs from the Dance Dance Revolution genre in that you must remember the sequence rather than reacting to it in real time.

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iPhone App Review: Phineas and Ferb Arcade

Phineas and Ferb Arcade by Walt Disney for iPhoneTitle: Phineas and Ferb Arcade (link)
Publisher:
Walt Disney
Released:
December 3, 2009
Cost:
$1.99
iTouch?:
Yes (WiFi/Internet required for scoreboard)
Pros: Quick, addictive play, free preview available
Cons: Controls sometimes difficult, navigation buttons inconsistent
Review: In a series of 3 mini-games, Phineas and Ferb brings the number one show for kids ages 6-11 (not to mention popular with every other demographic) to the iPhone.

Here’s the plot: While Phineas and Ferb are trying to  build a snow mountain so they can snowboard in the backyard (S’no Problem),  older sister Candace goes surfing in the backyard tide pool trying to impress Jeremy (Cowabunga Candace!), all the while Perry the Platypus is acting as Agent P, trying to protect the secret hideout from infiltrators (Agent P’s Hideout).

Here’s the thing: If you’re a Phineas and Ferb fanatic, you might find yourself thinking those game names sound familiar — and they should. All three are actual almost-direct ports of existing games you can play online for free. Granted the controls are different given the nature of a personal computer versus an iPhone (and to be honest, in the latter two games, the iPhone wins in this respect), but gameplay is virtually the same which means if you aren’t familiar with them, you can try them out online first before buying the game (see links below).

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iPhone App Review: Prep & Landing

Disney's Prep & Landing for the iPhone by Walt DisneyTitle: Prep & Landing (link)
Publisher:
Walt Disney
Released:
November 19, 2009
Cost:
$.99
iTouch?:
Yes (WiFi/Internet required for some)
Pros: A couple of entertaining games/features
Cons: Long, frustrating gameplay with little payoff, promoted items missing
Review: On December 1, ABC will air its first ever original holiday special produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios. That’s the good news. The bad news is they want to charge you for downloading the promotional app and it falls way short on expectations and even promises.

After watching a surprisingly brief promo for the special, you are presented with two menu options. Kringle Academy is where you’ll find 3 mini-games and P&L Specialized Equipment is where you’ll find the ‘extras,’ which are often more entertaining than the games themselves, unfortunately.

As a  general rule with the game, sound effects are nil (Christmas carols are your only source of audio candy) and gameplay is exceptionally long with repetitive movements. There’s also no scoring system so you’re really only competing for ‘distance’ and colored rewards such as gold, silver and red (and other, ‘lesser’ colors) which seem to offer no benefit other than a virtual pat on the iBack.

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Stitch Kingdom Introduces the Definitive Guide to Disney Apps for the iPhone

We are pleased to present our newest addition to our library of already established collection of Definitive Guides: Disney Apps for the iPhone and iPod Touch.

iPhone and iPod Touch users now have a single source to turn to in order to find the entire list of Disney related apps available on Apple’s iTunes Store in addition to applications authored by The Walt Disney Company itself.

The guide allows you to sort, categorize and even perform a keyword search against the Disney App library, so you can immediately find just the App you’re looking for. Sort by price or just click on the option to show just the Free apps — it’s just that simple!

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iPhone App Review: LUMA

LUMA by Walt DisneyTitle: LUMA (link)
Publisher:
Walt Disney
Released:
November 10, 2009
Cost:
$.99
iTouch?:
Yes
Pros: Quick, addictive play, good graphics and sound effects
Cons:
None
Review: I confess when I first read LUMA’s description and saw the game shots, I thought I knew exactly how the game was going to go. At first glance, the concept seemed like this network type game I had played on a PDA long ago where ‘cables’ had to be rotated in 90 degree increments in order to connect various ‘nodes’ together to complete a ‘network.’ Although LUMA’s premise is similar, Disney Interactive (and its Enorbus subsidiary) have managed to turn the simple concept on its ears and produce a quick and highly addictive logic puzzle game.

LUMA by Walt Disney (more…)

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iPhone App Review: Bayou Beats (The Princess and the Frog)

Bayou Beats for the iPhone by Walt DisneyTitle:Bayou Beats (link)
Publisher:
Walt Disney
Released:
November 7, 2009
Cost:
Free
iTouch?:
Yes
Pros: Free, some replay value, music from the film
Cons:
Large installation due to music video
Review: In promotion of Disney’s The Princess and the Frog which opens nationwide December 11 comes this free app which includes a small, quasi-addictive game along with a music video and a lot of purchase links.

Bayou Beats for the iPhone by Walt DisneyThe game itself is small and pretty straightforward. Using instrumental versions of one of several songs from the feature film (but sadly not Gonna Take You There) as a backdrop, the game consists of pressing one of several buttons along the bottom as they are lit up by falling crowns passing through them. The game keeps track of how many correct touches in a row you have and then rewards long streaks by increasing a score multiplier. Where it may get confusing is that it looks like you have to ‘catch’ the individual crowns, but while you do have to prevent the crown from passing through without being touched, the key is you’re touching the button while it’s lit which means a single crown can yield you 2 or 3 successful touches if done quickly enough while a few crowns in immediate succession can yield a quick finger upwards of 15 touches or so. Get too greedy by having one of your touches land when the button is no longer lit, however, and the frog croaks and the chain count is reset to zero.

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