StoryPick - Read with Quizzes

review by
Mieke VanderBorght, Common Sense Media
StoryPick - Read with Quizzes [node:content-type] Poster Image
Poorly written junk fiction full of ads and bad grammar.

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A lot or a little?

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

Educational Value

Kids may find some stories that encourage them to read and enjoy it. Unfortunately, poor quality of stories and grammatical errors lessen the educational value.

Ease of Play

Tap the story you want to read, and continue tapping to advance through it.

Violence

Some stories include mild themes of violence such as fighting (against zombies) or brief description of person who died by suicide.

Sex

New stories are routinely added; it's possible that they may contain mild sexual content.

Language

Some stories include mild language such as "goddamn."

Consumerism

Free version includes limited stories; frequent pop-up, third-party ads; and opportunities to watch additional ads to win points for reading more. Free version also freezes after a certain amount of time reading and forces a 10-minute break with ads to subscribe. Subscribe for $2.99/week or $29.99/year to get rid of ads and reading limits. No parent gate at point of purchase.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

In one story, there's a reference to secretly giving a woman a mild sedative. Other stories may include additional mild themes of alcohol, drugs, or smoking.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that StoryPick - Read with Quizzes is a subscription-based collection of fiction with lots of areas of concern. If kids use the free version, they can read up to three stories, and they are exposed to an onslaught of ads. Pop-up ads from third parties are generously peppered through the stories. If kids respond incorrectly to a quiz question, they must watch an entire video ad to continue. And kids can also watch whole video ads to earn more reading time. In addition, after a certain amount of time, the app imposes a 10-minute break and shows ads encouraging users to purchase a subscription that eliminates ads and forced breaks and unlocks all stories. There are also pop-up requests to rate the app, and when kids first open the app, they choose whether to allow notifications and whether to send anonymous user data to the developer. The stories currently available include minor instances of language, violence, and drugs. New stories are routinely added and they may contain additional content to be aware of. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

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What's it about?

Scroll left or right to browse available stories in STORYPICK - READ WITH QUIZZES. When you find one that interests you, tap on it to start reading. A small amount of text appears on the screen; each time you tap the screen, a few more lines of text appear. Keep tapping to advance all the way through the story. Every once in a while, a multiple-choice quiz question pops up instead of story text. If you answer correctly, you can keep reading; if you answer incorrectly, you must try again until you get the right answer.

Is it any good?

This collection of poorly written stories fails to deliver what it promises. Unfortunately, StoryPick - Read with Quizzes disappoints on both user experience and content quality. In terms of user experience, the app has a clean and colorful look, which makes it feel inviting. However, the promised "gorgeous" illustrations are few and far between and are standard, average-quality graphic design images. Similarly, with roughly two to three quizzes per story, the promised in-text quizzes are also scarce. When text loads after tapping, it's often too high up on the screen and you need to scroll down to be able read the top lines. And some basic app navigation controls are missing, such as being able to tap out of a story that you're in the middle of reading. Not to mention that the free version is riddled with ads. This all might be forgivable in an app with high-quality content. However, StoryPick - Read with Quizzes isn't that app. Though the topics are of high interest (zombies, haunted hotels, and so on), the quality of the writing is just terrible. Storylines don't make sense, story sections are used incorrectly (an epilogue at the beginning of the story?), and the stories are plagued by incorrect sentence structure and bad grammar. There are much better options for engaging kids with reading -- skip this one!

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the StoryPick - Read with Quizzes advertising model. What are all the ways the app tries to get you to spend money? How do the developers earn money? What does it mean to use the "free" version? Is it really free? Why or why not?

  • Make finding all the poor grammar into a game. Challenge your kids to find as many mistakes as they can. How would you correct the errors?

  • What, if anything, makes these stories appealing? What aspects of the stories make people want to read more?  

App details

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For kids who love unique reading experiences

Themes & Topics

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