Developed by a father of six in Idaho, Smart PJs are an interactive piece of clothing for kids covered with colored dots that work just like QR codes. Using the camera on a smartphone or tablet, a parent or child can scan one of the forty-seven dot patterns printed on the pajamas to launch a story within the Smart PJ Stories application. Compatible with iOS and Android platforms, stories include children’s tales from the Brothers Grimm, Hans Christian Andersen and Mother Goose.
Ideal for children that are just learning to read, the application includes text at the bottom of the screen as well as a narrator that reads the story out loud. A parent or child can also choose to mute the narrator in order to read through the story at their own pace.
Specifically designed to be used with the Smart PJs, there is no table of contents or index to select specific stories within the app. The colored dots have to be scanned first, otherwise a child can’t access a story. However, children don’t have to wait long for a story after the initial scan. The application immediately launches into the story associated with the dot pattern within seconds after the scan.
In an interview with ABC News, creator Juan Murdoch said “The Smart PJ’s have gone through a lot of trial and error. We had to create new scanning technology. It’s not just QR codes — we had to create them from scratch.” Murdoch plans to release more applications with new content by the end of the year. Since content can be linked to a specific set of dots on the pajamas, parents don’t have to buy a new set of pajamas for their child. They simply have to do is download a new application to their mobile device. The smart pajamas are available for children between the ages of one to eight and cost $25 for a set.