An earlier verison of this story and headline said the Hullabalu app had 1 million tablet downloads. In fact, the app has 1 million tablet “swipes.” The company hasn’t released download figures.
Six weeks after launching on the iPad, kids-focused startup Hullabalu has a certified hit with its hybrid book and multimedia app, Pan: The Fearless Beribolt
Kids can’t seem to get enough of the story, which revolves around a plucky purple panda named Pan. The app rocketed to the top of the Books list on iTunes within a week of its release. Hullabalu says more than two-thirds of kids are opening the app every week to read the purple bear’s story of courage and responsibility.
Now the company, which received $1.8 million in funding from a who’s who of internet entrepreneurs, is expanding to the iPhone. The app is priced at $3.99 on the iPad, but the company says it will offer it for $0.99 on the iPhone at launch. In addition to the universal expansion, the new update also features faster “Pandagrams” — a photo booth for kids that enables them to take pictures alongside Pan.
Both apps will receive story updates down the road, opening new chapters to Pan’s saga and teaching the grade school set life lessons like responsibility, respect and kindness. The company also announced that former Disney President of Marketing M.T. Carney has joined the board as an advisor.
Hullabalu, which began a year ago as an online purveyor of stuffed animals, pivoted to a digital storytelling app after the stories of the company’s characters became popular with their audience. Pan is the first installment of the series.