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Hellosaurus app starts with YouTuber content

Hellosaurus was released for iOS this week

A start-up SVoD platform for kids has raised US$3.5m in investment and launched with a line-up of interactive content from YouTubers.

The Hellosaurus app was made available to download on iOS this week and features shows from YouTube channels such as Mother Goose Club, Kids Diana, Mar Mar Land, The Onyx Family, The Laurie Berkner Band and Cosmic Kids Yoga.

US-based CEO James Ruben said he founded the company to enable creators of safe, high-quality children’s programming to move beyond passive video into immersive, interactive content.

Ruben, who helped grow quiz app HQ Trivia from a prototype to an international phenomenon played by tens of millions of people, has brought in US$3.5m of seed funding led by General Catalyst to support the company.

The app, which costs US$7.99 per month, uses mobile tech such as multi-touch screens, microphones and cameras to allow children to “play” with the content.

Ruben also pointed to recent YouTube policy changes that have left many kids’ media creators in search of additional monetisation opportunities.

The funding round also includes a number of prominent angel investors such as YouTube founder Chad Hurley and Vimeo founder Zach Klein.

Hellosaurus has been built by staff with experience at companies such as Google, Toca Boca, Nickelodeon, The New York Times, Apple, Sesame Street, Kidville, Mystery.org, DataCamp and EA Games.

“Many of us grew up on shows like Sesame Street and Blue’s Clues, which have long tried to create the level of audience participation that Hellosaurus has finally made a reality,” said Ruben.

“Mother Goose Club is thrilled to be among the first content creators to use Hellosaurus’ new interactive technology. The benefits of this type of active engagement include better hand-eye coordination and improved problem-solving abilities, both of which are crucial for strong early childhood development,” said Harry Jho, CEO of Mother Goose Club.

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