I was recently given the opportunity to try Bluebee Pals with my family. As I’ve mentioned a time or two, we love new technology in this family. 😉 The Bluebee Pals are definitely something special! These adorable plush animals look like pretty typical (and very soft) plush, but when you connect them to a Bluetooth-enabled device the magic begins! The Bluebee Pals move their mouths to sing along with music, read a storybook aloud, and even work as a hands-free speaker and microphone for making phone calls.
It’s very easy to set up your Bluebee Pal. If you’ve connected Bluetooth devices before, you’re halfway there. There is a “button” located on the animal’s ear that you press to connect. The other ear is for answering phone calls. The power switch and usb connection for recharging are located inside a velcro closure in the back.
Xander took to Leo right away and quickly became a favorite. I’m seeing him pay much more attention to his pal Leo reading him a story than he does when Mommy or Daddy read it. When he uses educational apps, Xander can see Leo “speaking” the words and phrases to him and it keeps him much more interested. He likes to see what will get Leo talking again. Connecting for phone calls is so much fun, too. It’s really funny to see Leo’s mouth move as a loved one talks on the other end of the phone line and we don’t have to worry about Xander dropping our expensive phones. Leo even sings lullabies to Xander at night. I connect him to my Kindle and load up a selection of gentle music… so easy! Leo is soft enough to safely cuddle and no cords to worry about.
Bluebee Pals were donated to The Jessie Baker School in Elk Grove, California to study how the teachers and teachers aides are able to use assistive technology as a learning tool to help special needs children in the classroom. I do not personally have much experience with special needs, but the following documentary was an eye-opening look at how effective the Bluebee Pals could be in a special needs learning environment.
Overall, I’m very impressed with our Bluebee pal, but I am a little disappointed in the actual function of the mouth. I find the mouth movements are frequently out of sync with the sound. The mouth also makes a creaky noise as it moves. It doesn’t bother Xander though… and he is the key audience here. The fun of a talking pal outweighs any little glitches. I think this would make a wonderful gift for any young or special needs child in your life. Bring home a Pal today!
Pros: Engages kids. Great learning tool. Wonderful assistive technology for special needs children. Works with any Bluetooth and source of sound… even phone calls!
Cons: Mouth movements are not well synced to sound and jaw is creaky.
I received this product free or discounted in the hopes that I would share my opinions. As someone who relies on honest reviews to make purchases, I work hard to provide other consumers with a thorough, truthful, and unbiased opinion of my personal experiences.
Bluebee Pals are a plush talking educational learning tool that sings, reads and answers phone calls. Our innovative technology includes lip synchronization that allows the animal’s “mouth” to move while you’re reading storybooks, engaging in learning apps or singing songs. Children can entertain family and friends when using Bluebee Pals as a wireless speaker phone. (Regularly $64.99/ Currently $59.99)