There are a few apps on my iPhone competing for the title of ‘Best $0.99 I’ve ever spent’. Zombiebooth 3D is up there, as is Angry Birds (another iTunes link), but the winner has to be Cupcakes!, one of a slew of offerings from developers Maverick Software.
I know what you’re thinking and no, I have not taken leave of my senses. If you have young kids, or any young relatives, this app is amazing.
In a nutshell, you get to bake cakes. You choose a cupcake liner, select your batter and pop them in the oven before setting the timer. This sounds quite dull admittedly, but the fun begins when you start choosing toppings. There’s icing, sprinkles, candy lettering, jelly beans, frosting, candles which you get to blow out – pretty much everything a toddler loves except actually making a mess.
You then get to ‘eat’ your cake by tapping the finished masterpiece with your finger, each press taking a bite out of it accompanied by a munching sound. My daughter and nephew, both three, find this, and blowing out the candles beforehand totally absorbing.
You can also save a picture of your creation to your photo library, email it, upload it to Facebook or submit it to the Cupcakes! Hall of Fame, where it will be shown in the app’s news section if it makes the grade. Admittedly I don’t expect my three year old to use most of that functionality (yet), but it’s nice to know it’s there.
Some of the graphics in Cupcakes! are pretty poor it has to be said, but the frosting looks delicious most of the time and to be honest, my daughter couldn’t give a fig anyway.
Everyone who has toddlers around will know that they tend to have the attention span of a gnat, constantly flitting from one activity to another, but my daughter really gets engrossed in this app – it’s tricky getting the iPhone from her when I need to make a call – and that means i get a bit of time to wipe up the orange juice, glitter and humus mixture from the lounge floor, put a few toys away, or just fix myself a cup of tea.
That, my learned friends, is well worth $0.99 in my humble opinion.