Son-X gives kids audio encouragement to get into the swing of things
The solar-powered Son-X Octavia attaches to any swing and gives audio cues to encourage kids to go higher
It's hard to believe how many classic children's toys are getting modern makeovers these days – from the Etch A Sketch to toy helicopters to footballs – and now it looks like even the playground swing set is getting a slight upgrade with the Son-X Octavia. When attached to any swing, the Son-X will play different soundbites depending on how high or long a child swings, encouraging them to go higher.
The attachment is made with a hard plastic casing and powered by small solar panels on the top that work even on cloudy days. A speaker built into the attachment points downward to play either sounds of applause, a dance beat, or an orchestra as a child swings. The sounds change slightly, getting more and more robust as a child either swings higher or for a longer period of time – the applause will start as just a few light claps and then change to cheers and howls, for example. With the solar cells and battery buffer, the Son-X can be used without interruption for up to four hours - enough to tire out even the most energetic of children.
Unfortunately, the one downside to encouraging kids to swing higher is ... well, encouraging kids to swing higher. Almost everyone had a young friend or two who was injured from jumping or falling off a swing after going much too high. On the plus side though, it might be helpful for parents to have an audio warning for when their children are swinging as high as the device can register.
Check out the video below to see one young demonstrator showing off how the Son-X Octavia works.
Source: Son-X via Hags
About the Author
Jonathan grew up in Norway, China, and Trinidad before graduating film school and becoming an online writer covering green technology, history and design, as well as contributing to video game news sites like Filefront and 1Up. He currently resides in Texas, where his passions include video games, comics, and boring people who don't want to talk about either of those things.
All articles by Jonathan Fincher
It sounds absurd that any child would need such encouragement by the time your letting them swing on their own, and it would seem to delay self motivation.
Another marvelous technological achievement towards the goal of eliminating the tedious work of parental interactions. While we're at it, we should build in hydration and food delivery systems on the swings too. Why stop there? A swing mounted toilet system would complete the package. Then we can simply chain our kids to the swings while we have some much need "me" adult time. Mind you, I'm not advocating neglecting our children. That's why all of these products must have wifi/4G communication to our smart phones, so we can monitor and remotely manage the little ones without any interruptions to our cocktail party.
Ah, encouraging a kid to swing higher, what an amazing idea! After all, I almost NEVER used the swings when I was young....and when I did, you can bet that I would NEVER swing to the point where the chains go slack....what happened to the reward of swinging higher being....well...swinging higher?
It also seems like a law suit waiting (impatiently, drumming its fingers) to happen. "My kid fell off the swing and broke his neck/arm/leg/back/face/butt. He never would have been swinging that high if that infernal device encouraging him!"
Love those comments!!
In my swing days 'encouragement' was being able to see above the swing's top horizontal bar...
What happens to the device when said child gets bored and wants to try the slide? do poor parents have to carry it round with them? (talking public playgrounds here)
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