If you've seen a baby take to an iPad before she can walk or say "Mommy," you know that the "mobile natives" are born into a different world—an intuitive one of touchscreens—than even their predecessors, the "digital natives."
And there's a burgeoning digital content market to be conquered.
"My 1-year-old figured out how to drag icons on my smartphone three months ago," said Caleb Clark, director of the Educational Technology Program at the Marlboro College Graduate School in Vermont. "I Iook for apps for him that his mother will approve."
One recent entrant is StoryBots, a purveyor of digital "fun and educational" games for kids from the brothers behind JibJab, who entered the national consciousness in 2004 with their musical viral video sending up presidential candidates George W. Bush and John Kerry.
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"We see this massive shift in how kids are consuming media," co-founder Gregg Spiridellis told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street." "So we were inspired. We said, 'If Sesame Street were created today in this world in connected devices, what could it be?'"
StoryBot's answers include "Starring You" e-books and videos that put a child's own face into the action, and millions have been viewed since last September's launch. StoryBots is a walled-off ad-free online world so kids can roam it safely, and instead of a price-per-app model like its competitors, it offers all access for a subscription of $4.99 a month.
Of course, PBS Kids and Sesame Workshop have their own presence in the children's app space. Others include Scholastic Interactive, Toca Boca, Ocean House and LeapFrog, although there are many small players hoping for a breakout hit.