This is the Bridging Book, and it “bridges” the gap between reality and virtual reality by combining an iPad app with an actual paper book. The concept is simple and yet looks to be very effective, if the smiles on the kid in the video are anything to go by: The iPad detects page turns made in the book using magnets. Yes, frikkin’ magnets.
Each page has a magnet in its corner, and the app uses the iPad’s compass (aka. magnetometer) to detect turns. From there it’s just a matter of serving up a complimentary page on the screen, either a copy of the actual page with added technological extras (or “textras,” if you will), or an extension to the page, or something seemingly completely unrelated to our adult eyes but likely very sensible when viewed through the eyes of a child (not literally viewed through the eyes of a child. That’s both illegal and messy, as I found out once when I was tasked with “looking after” my nephews).
As a child of 1970s England, my only entertainment was from books, TV and burning ants with the sun and a magnifying glass. Given that the ant population could’t keep up with my extermination regime, and that kids TV in the 70s lasted for about 40 minutes a day, I spent a lot of time in books borrowed from the mobile library that visited our street once a fortnight (UK english for “two weeks,” or “fourteen nights.”)
However, even a book lover like me would have been instantly entranced by the accompanying iPad, and probably have given up on stupid paper altogether. Which – finally – leads me to think that this concept design is aimed at nostalgic adults rather than curious children.