In January, Griffin Technology demoed its new Crayola ColorStudio HD for the iPad at CES. Now the unique product is available on store shelves nationwide. Is it any good? Find out here.

There are countless coloring book apps available for the iPad. However, CrayolaStudio HD is the first that requires a digital stylus to work. Called an iMarker, the device looks a lot like a Crayola marker except that this one glows when activated.

The iMarker retails for $29.99 as part of the larger Crayola ColorStudio HD kit. Unfortunately, this is pure marketing spin.

In truth, while the box is said to include one “iMarker digital stylus + Crayola ColorStudio HD app,” this isn’t true. The app is available in the App Store and is absolutely free. And no, the app will not work without the iMarker!

Therefore, make no mistake you are spending $30 for a battery-powered pen.

Crayola ColorStudio HD

Crayola ColorStudio HD

The app itself is pretty straightforward. When you start the app for the first time, simple directions help you sync it with your iMarker. From there, the fun begins.

Children of all ages can select to draw pages from one of three categories. These include Coloring Pages, Make a Coloring Page, and Free Draw.

Coloring Pages are just that, but they contain something a paper-coloring book cannot: animation that interacts with the child as they draw.

There are currently 30 coloring pages from five different subcategories. These include Monsters, Jungle, Seasons, Sports, and Underwater.

The second, Make a Coloring Page, allows youngers to add key elements to a blank page. These include built-in animations, clip art, and music.

Finally, Free Draw is just that: a blank sheet of virtual paper for drawing. Here one can doodle, sketch, and write.

Regardless of the category chosen, the iMarker unlocks ColorStudio HD’s coloring options, which include crayons, markers, or colored pencils.

Masterpieces may be saved to the iPad’s Photo app, or sent via email or Facebook. Depending on your printer setup, the page can also be printed.

According to the app’s iTunes page, future updates will bring more pages and other enhancements.

The Crayola ColorStudio HD is definitely distinctive and works as expected. However, its price tag must be considered.

Is it worth $30? Absolutely for the child that loves drawing. However, for those kids that get bored with apps  quickly, it may be best to use the $30 and buy your child (and yourself) a lot of apps for the same amount of money.

To make the price of the iMarker sound more reasonable, Griffin would be wise to release future apps that would also work with the device. Of course, those apps would have to be free!

Take a look:

The Crayola ColorStudio HD kit is available now at Best Buy. The Crayola ColorStudio HD app is available in the App Store.

What do you think? Leave your comments below.