November 12, 2010
Are you looking for a new, more interactive way to keep your kids entertained on those long road trips? Well, if you are the proud owner of an iPad and have a spare $1.99 in your iTunes account, we just may have the perfect solution for you and it's called State Plate. State Plate allows you and your entire family to hunt for and keep track of license plates from all over the United States. The app's main screen displays a beautifully rendered map of the U.S. with license plates attached to their respective states. Tapping on a license plate will flip it over, marking it as found and adding to the total in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. If you want to unmark a license plate, simply tap again and it will flip back over and remove one from the total. But State Plate isn't just a license plate tracker, it's also a learning tool. On the right edge of each plate is a small arrow that, when tapped, will reveal information for a specific state, including its capital, nickname, state flower and bird, population, and one cool fact. After the trip is over, you can reset the entire map using the refresh button in the bottom right corner of the screen. But, if you are like me and want to see if you can find all 50 license plates over a long period of time -- as your wife drives you around, of course -- you can leave the app at any time and it will save the current state it's in. See, it's not just for kids after all. State Plate was developed by Overcommitted, the creators of the very useful Ember, which was recently sold to 37signals. The team of two didn't come up with the idea themselves, however, it was actually conceived by one of the developer's children. Check out the story behind State Plate in the video embedded below.