The app does not rely on walls of text or technical manuals to impart the basics of coding, and will actually rely on games. This makes it ideal for kids who might not necessarily have the patience or understanding to go through text-based instructions. Instead the app will use what Tynker calls “age appropriate” features, such as large picture-based blocks that makes it easier for kids to tap.
It will also be tap-to-solve based meaning that younger kids won’t need to struggle (and get frustrated) with trying to drag and drop. There are also voice-over features for stories and puzzles for younger kids who might not be able to read so well just yet. This is actually not the first time Tynker has attempted to launch an app that teaches kids how code, and they are also not the first to try and use games and toys to impart programming fundamentals to children.
The app will be free to download and get started, but will later require a subscription fee of $0.99 a month, or $9.99 a year, and will also be exclusive for iOS devices. According to Tynker CTO, Srini Mandyam, “At Tynker, we believe that kids of all ages should develop the critical thinking skills needed to become the ‘makers of tomorrow’. We are very excited to launch Tynker Junior so that a whole new age group of children can begin to develop fundamental STEM skills that will serve them well as they progress in school and ultimately prepare for 21st century careers, in both technical and non-technical fields.”