Osmo Words

App review by
Amanda Bindel, Common Sense Media
Osmo Words App Poster Image
Interactive word-builder impresses with lots of options.

Parents say

age 4+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn vocabulary and practice spelling as they play. The easy settings are great for emerging readers working on sight words or letter sounds as they fill in one missing letter. The hardest level taxes kids' critical-thinking skills as they determine the word that fits the given number of letters and spell it. Since custom word lists can be created, kids can use the app to practice spelling or vocabulary words. Osmo Words is a versatile word game that's great for general word fun or specific drills.

Ease of Play

Reflective sensor is impressively responsive. Words are not pronounced out loud, so kids have to guess the word in the picture.

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Osmo Words is a free download that accompanies the basic gaming system from Osmo. The system, which includes two other apps and toys, retails for $79.99. It comes with a base and a reflector attachment that clips over the iPad's camera. The base fits any iPad, only requiring a slightly different configuration for the iPad Air and Mini. The device will have to be removed from its cover, so parents may want to help younger kids with the setup. Osmo Words also includes the two sets of alphabet cards, one in red and one in blue, with uppercase letters on one side and lowercase on the other. The camera reflector allows the device to see what kids are doing with the letters. Parents can register with Osmo to set up multiple player accounts on their device and can download more word lists or create their own through the Osmo website. To learn more about the kinds of information collected and shared, read the app's privacy policy.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written bylynellh1 January 17, 2018

Osmo Words is a fun way to spell!

I have only spent a few minutes with Osmo but I was instantly engaged. Most of the pictures are realistic, which is pretty cool - animation is fun, but doesn... Continue reading

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What's it about?

With OSMO WORDS you can play alone, competitively, or cooperatively, finding the missing letters for the word displayed in a picture. Choose from several themes of words, download other word packs for free by connecting to the Osmo website, or create your own word packs. Difficulty adjusts based on performance but can be manually adjusted for 12 levels ranging from easy (short words missing only one letter) to very hard (10-letter words with no starting letters). Each round lasts until a player reaches 100 points.

Is it any good?

The tablet becomes the gameboard in what feels a lot like an old-school wordplay game, but the tablet's options make it even more fun. The range of difficulty means everyone can be challenged, and the variety of word packs and the option to add your own make it really versatile. Enabling hints in the settings fills in a letter automatically after a minute with no activity. The images are striking, high-quality real-world pictures. One downside to Osmo Words: Competitors have to all play at the same challenge level because they both see the same word at the same time and race to see who can fill in the missing letters using their colored letters the fastest.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about words they encounter in Osmo Words and everyday life, reading signs together. Reading to kids and with kids is the best way to develop strong spelling and vocabulary skills.

  • Create custom cards for spelling lists, family names, or other interests through the Osmo website.

App details

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