As the parent of an inquisitive 5-year-old, I am always on the lookout for the next best thing to keep him engaged. And if that engagement promises to teach him something valuable through creative learning, it’s an added bonus. Nowadays, edtech apps abound for every aspect of education and every kind of content. According to a study conducted in 2019 by global analytics and advice firm Gallup, based on students in the United States, creativity in the classroom enhances student learning by a large degree. As classrooms remain virtual, this creative aspect must also therefore be outsourced to edtech apps. Voxbox, unlike other creative learning apps, distinguishes itself by being a place for children to express themselves. Since expression is the best form of creativity, this new app is a wonderful way to encourage our children to build their self-confidence and enhance their creative abilities.
I recently spoke to Aditya Jaishankar, Founder of Voxbox, about his new platform and how it promises to shake things up in the edtech sphere. Excerpts from the interview:
Noor (NAC): Hi Aditya! Congratulations on the launch of your brand new app – Voxbox! Please tell us about the journey so far and how you came up with the idea for this app.
Aditya Jaishankar (AJ): Hi Noor, thank you. It’s been a very interesting journey so far. I was pursuing an MBA and was all set to enter the FMCG sector as a marketing professional on the client-side. However, fate had something else planned entirely. Somehow, I started enjoying listening to big ideas from the advertising industry, and this led me to stray into the advertising field instead.
After working in advertising for over 19 years, I met my business partner, Sunder Raman. He had already set up a user-generated content platform called MAAD (Make Awesome ads). While working on this together, we realised that kids often expressed themselves beautifully and that led us to create a storytelling app called MaPa.
This app encouraged kids to record stories in their voices and share them privately with anyone anywhere in the world, but we felt that we were not tapping into their amazing range of creativity. We wanted to create a platform where children felt comfortable expressing themselves fully, which is also a form of creative learning. Our conversations with kids also revealed that they were keen on a platform where they could interact with other kids, and express their thoughts and ideas to other kids.
That led to the creation of India’s first social community for kids below the age of 13, where kids could share their ideas, experiences, thoughts and stories with one another – Voxbox.
We launched a few weeks ago and many kids across the country are already sharing their thoughts and experiences with other kids on the Voxbox community.
NAC: What according to you is the main issue that Voxbox is addressing for children?
AJ: I feel that unlike teens and adults who have different avenues including various social media platforms to share their thoughts and experiences, kids below the age of 13 do not have a platform where they can express themselves freely. The safety and security of kids is one of the key reasons why such a product has not been created, but our platform does it in a safe manner. We are a secure social community for children below 13, where they can interact with other kids and freely express their thoughts, ideas, experiences and stories. Voxbox is an audio-visual platform where kids do not need to reveal their name, age or other personal details. We are also COPPA (Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act of 1998) and GDPR (EU’s General Data Protection Regulation) regulated.
These measures ensure that our app is super safe and will be appreciated by both parents and kids. Further, no child can upload any post without parental consent. This ensures that no post can be harmful or prejudiced in any manner.
NAC: What is the story of the name? Who came up with it?
AJ: Voxbox is derived from Vox in French which means voice. On our app, every child’s voice matters and they are able to express themselves on a multitude of topics. A fun box where imagination has no limits, and creative learning is of utmost importance. That’s how the name Voxbox came into being.
NAC: How does one access your app?
AJ: One can access the app on google play store. Just search for Voxbox on the Play store and what will appear will be Voxbox – Kids share ideas, experiences and stories. (Download link below).
NAC: What sets you apart from your competitors?
AJ: I’d like to reiterate that we are the only social community for kids below 13 in India.
We do not have any direct competitors, as social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram do not have specific products for children below the age of 13.
YouTube for kids allows children to express themselves but does not foster the community connection that we have. Also, we stimulate every child’s imagination by focussing on creative learning through several prompts that act as thought stimulators which is not the case with YouTube kids.
Right from Sparking an idea, to Reliving an experience, to Exploring a city, we have diverse categories where children can express themselves in a language of their choice.
NAC: Do you cater specifically to an Indian audience or also to people from abroad?
AJ: Right now we only cater to kids within India, but hope to go global soon. In a matter of just four weeks, we have had over 800 downloads. This has come without any paid advertising as purely organic growth due to word of mouth.
NAC: What are the creative learning skills that Voxbox is instilling in young people?
AJ: These are the creative learning skills that our platform instils:
- We nurture the natural creativity of children and spark their imagination
- Enable them to become more expressive
- Break barriers and bond with children across different cultures
NAC: What have been the biggest challenges you have faced in setting up Voxbox so far? How have you overcome them?
AJ: There have been multiple challenges, as is always the case when you are trying to set up something new.
Since this is a unique product we did not have a frame of reference for evaluation. We had to dive deep into the consumer’s psyche across the country to check if this product would be acceptable to parents. We had to keep rigorously testing to ensure that the experience was absolutely smooth – a small example would be ensuring that each community post would be uploaded instantaneously without any time lag.
NAC: What are you working on next?
AJ: There are multiple categories within our app. So we keep creating newer and fresher topics to pique the imagination of the child and enhance creative learning through our app. An example of this is when we organised a fun creative session with an industry expert so kids could create their own superheroes, and it was a big hit!
NAC: How did you select the programs offered on the app? Since it’s impossible to include all aspects of creativity, do you plan to include more in the future?
AJ: We have a content team that looks at various topics that will enable kids to expand their imagination and express themselves. It is creative learning at its best, and through the use of an app! Since we are a parent-led team we are always ahead of the curve when it comes to understanding what kids find entertaining and fascinating.
LINK TO DOWNLOAD THE APP:
This blog post is part of the blog challenge ‘Blogaberry Dazzle’ hosted by Cindy D’Silva and Noor Anand Chawla in collaboration with Journey Matters and Voxbox.
*This is a sponsored post.
**Copyright in pictures and content belongs to nooranandchawla.com and cannot be republished or repurposed without express permission of the author. As I am a copyright lawyer by profession, infringement of any kind will invite strict legal action.
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Wow will check this out. both my kids are below 13!
Sounds like an awesome app. Will be sure to pass on the info to friends with kids who can use this.
Voxbox sounds great. Thanks for sharing this, Noor. I am going to ask my grandson to download it. He is a good storyteller and sings well too
Voxbox seems to be a good platform for children under 13. Social media is quite vast and not suitable for young children. Such outlets are necessary to instill confidence in them, creatively.
Voxbox sounds like a fantastic platform for the kids to show their hidden talents. My niece sings well, I’m going to tell my sister to download the app for her. Thanks for sharing dear.
Nice to know about this app , the concept is new and good , kids would definitely love it 🙂
Sounds like an amazing app – thanks Noor for introducing this!! I will definitely explore this for my 7 year old. She loves creating her own stories!!
This looks like a really good app. My grandchildren would have loved it but are too old for it now. I will surely share if with younger ones.
A social media app targeted at kids. This is really interesting. I recall reading about it earlier as well, not sure where. Thanks for sharing the interview.
My son is also 5 but I think i will have to wait for them to launch it outside India. I remember reading about MaPa on your blog. They are surely coming up with some really cool stuff for kids.
I had heard about Voxbox app before and check their instagram page too. loved all the features of this app. indeed a great way to enhance creativity and imagination power in kids. thank you so much for sharing the interview with Aditya jayshankar learnt more insight about this app.
Hats Off to Aditya for coming up with such a great idea. While the market is flooding with learning Apps and online games , this is a nice platform for kids to share their creative ideas and brainstorm !
I will definitely check this out, as you know that Shrav loves to create his own stories.
Yes he’ll love it I’m sure!
Sounds like an amazing app… will check it out soon 👍
Intriguing name! And wonderful concept. Best wishes…
I have a 6 year old niece who could definitely use this app. I like the idea of social media of sorts for kids. This space is often under scrutiny by the regulators. However YouTube kids is already there and I think more apps like these should follow the suit.
Voxbox seems like a great option. Will definitely recommend these for a productive growing up dayes of kids.
An app for kids to express their imagination is something really new. Will check this out
Sounds like an interesting concept. Will check it out!
This app sounds very interesting. I love the idea and thought behind this app. Kids under 13 also need some platform to express their ideas. I hope they go global soon.
The app looks so interesting and creative for Childs. Especially I love their look and features, I am sure mommies will find a great way to educate their children this way.
Thank you for this wonderful post, my child is 7 yrs old and I would definitely try this app.
Creating app that answers all the questions of the child is really a good one. Liked the though process behind the app and also the visualisation of it.
Wow 800 downloads in just 4 weeks of launching is indeed a great achievement by Mr. Aditya Jaishankar and the team. VoxBox app this is first time i am hearing about this app. And I loved the fun services it serves for the children below 13 age. I am surely going to check this out.
These are abundant apps available now a days, it becomes really difficult to choose. Thanks for sharing all the features and benefits of this app, will surely check this out.
I love trying new apps for my creative use. I would to try this one as it can be a great help for me. I will definitely check and leave the review soon.