Chooseco, a company that publishes Choose Your Own Adventure books, has partnered with Amazon Alexa and Audible to create an interactive book series. The Alexa skill is available for two Choose Your Own Adventure books by R.A Montgomery, Journey Under the Sea and The Abominable Snowman. To begin either book, users can say “Alexa, open Choose Your Own Adventure”.
Chooseco spent years trying to convert their books into audio, facing numerous challenges.
“There are critical elements of CYOA in print form that keep reluctant readers engaged—illustrations, text from other storylines to encourage readers to explore more than one storyline in the book, the ability to ‘turn back a page’ after an unfortunate choice—and it was a challenge to replicate this experience with e-books,”
said Shannon Gilligan, CEO and Publisher of Chooseco. Audible, the leading audiobook provider and a subsidiary of Amazon, provided the sound team with the necessary expertise to create a seamless user experience. The Choose Your Own Adventure is available as of February 4th, 2019 on all Alexa-enabled devices.
Chooseco is not the only way that users can listen to children’s books on their smart home platforms. Last fall, Google Home partnered with Disney to create read-along books. Users can skip parts and take breaks, making the stories more convenient. Newer titles like Moana and Coco are available, as well as older classics like Peter Pan. Aside from stories, Disney has created Choose Your Own Adventure games for kids available on Google Home.
As children become more and more comfortable with technology, smart home companies rush to create content and products to suit their needs. Last Spring, Amazon created the Echo Dot Kids Edition, which comes with a “kid-friendly case” and parental controls. As the smart home market grows exponentially, read-along kids books and games are expected to increase in numbers.