Saturday 19 May 2012

Friday Fun - Vtech Storio

Recently, my girls were sent a Vtech Storio to try out. It's an interactive reading console to helps 3-7 year-olds read and also play games, a kind of Kindle for kids if you will. I'd actually flirted with the idea of buying Lil-lil one for her last birthday as she loves reading and words. She and Goose are also glued to my iPhone and iPad whenever they get the chance and I get sick of fighting them for them.

I tell you games have come along way from the Game'n'Watch I used to have as a kid, they even make the Speak'n'Spell look prehistoric. (Why did electronic games in the '80s have "'n'" in them?)

When the pink package turned up they were thrilled! I was a little dismayed when I discovered it took batteries, but it only needed 4xAAs and they have lasted amazingly well. I haven't had to replace them yet, despite a lot of use.

Immediately, the girls were reading the Dora story that came with the console. They could turn the pages as the story was read, the words illuminating as they were said. Before long they were playing all the games, which Goose loved. Lil-lil loved that she could practice writing numbers and letters with the pen that comes with the Storio. Drawing and creating artworks was another hit feature. 

The Storio comes with one story cartridge and other cartridges can be bought or stories downloaded from the Vtech website store. The Storio comes with three free story downloads. I jumped online and downloaded them, which took a little time. Then I was dismayed to find that I needed a SD memory card for them to work on the console. This was disappointing, but I should have read the instructions beforehand. 

You can keep an eye on how the kids are progressing by syncing the console with the website. This give parents data on what they're reading and what questions they're answering correctly in the games, etc.

I was also happy to discover that the Storio could be linked with a Vtech camera that Lil-lil had. They could upload photos and drawn on them and create their own artworks. Very funky. 

Overall the kids have had a lot of fun with it and it's been a hit. The only cons were needing an SD memory card for the additional downloads and features (which doesn't come with the Storio) and needing to buy additional cartridges for new stories. 

The Storio retails for around $130 in the shops. I have one Vtech Storio to giveaway to a lucky reader (the winner can choose from the Dora or Cars 2 consoles). 

To win, comment below and tell me who in your life would like a Storio and why.
Open to Aussie residents only. Entries close 11.59pm, Thursday May 24, 2012. 
One entry per person. 


  1. I would take it to school and use it for some kids I have that are just struggling with reading Books scare the beejesus out of them because they equate reading with failing.

    This would be right up there alley. A lot of kids with reading difficulties play an inordinate amount of video games (a debate for another time!!!) so this would appeal to them greatly.

  2. Abi would go BANANAS for one of these. She is forever reading books and heaven help me the day she figures out how to use my kindle!!

    At minimum, I read about long 5 books a day. I would love her to have some independence and start to read on her own.

    Great comp Rin!


  3. Hi Corinne!

    Frankie my Miss 3 would love a storio and I would love her to practice her writing and reading. That way, she will be able to differentiate between an 8 and a B next time! (tho I have to admit, I was pretty impressed when she recognised the 8).

  4. Thanks for the opportunity to win. I would love to use it for my son, Harry. He loves books and he loves my lap top just as much. So this would combine the two very nicely.

  5. My 3.5 year old son is obsessed with reading and writing (finally something he takes after me with!), not to mention all things electronic (that's due to Daddy's influence, that one!). I too had been wondering about purchasing a Storio, even if just to keep him amused when he is up so early...

    Thanks for such a balanced review Corinne, and the chance to enter!

  6. I've been eyeing off one of these for a while, thanks for the review for the extra info. I still have trouble getting my head around the way technology is moving, especially with kids games, most of the time they're showing me how things work.
    I'd be guessing that if we were lucky enough to win all three of my girls would LOVE it, in fact they'd probably be fighting over it, so maybe I shouldn't win! I love that it has books, games and links to the v-tech camera that's good marketing!
    Happy Weekend Corinne.

  7. My nephew. He loves to read, and loves gadgets even more. I know that winning this competition for him would make me the COOLEST Aunty ever! ... if I'm not already :)

  8. Oh my word Corinne, this is FABULOUS giveaway.
    And the advancements in children's games and learning tools is overwhelming. I know there is so much more out there that I should be buying for the boys, but what to buy? and what not to? It's mind-boggling.
    This is a great review on the Vtech Storio in any case, so thank you for that.
    If I was to win one of these clever things, it would definitely be Angus and his four year old inquisitive mind who would benefit. He would be loving the Cars 2 console.
    Thanks for the shot at it Corinne xo

  9. Bella would love one of these! Might make up for the fact that her sister is about to have a birthday. She is horrified Tilly will be getting presents and not her! I may even be allowed to use my phone again :) x

  10. My nephew Harrison is turning 4 next month and this would make me Uncle of the year!! He loves stories and is curious with all things electronic, so he would take to it quickly! The Cars theme makes anything cool in his eyes, and he loves learning.

  11. Three evenings a week I am the solo parent in the house (something you're currently experiencing!). It is a juggle to feed, bathe and get two little boys to bed who - without fail - go slightly crazy every one of these evenings come bed time. Mr 3 (whose evening catch cry is - "just one more book Mum please") would love the Storio and be the one to get the most use out of it. But, to be honest, I think it would be me who would like it the most!

  12. Great giveaway.

    My just turned Miss 4 would love this, it would also mean I dont have to share my iphone with her ;-p

  13. My son would have a blast with it. He is forever Mummy Book!!!! or daddy book. he loves it when I put a book on my ipad for him but he can be a bit rough and I'm worried it would hold up to his "love" much longer :)

  14. My three year old loves to be read to and is trying figure out all her letters. Sometimes when the baby needs attention, Miss A feels left out. She would love to be a big girl and have her own Storio.


Thank you so much for your comments! I'm always thrilled to hear from you.

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