It seems like every day brings a new piece of technology into our world. With the rapid advancement of personal devices, parents have struggled to maintain control over which new technologies their children use and what content they are exposed to. As parents of 4, Angela and Michael Smith knew first-hand the issues associated with handing their 5-year-old daughter an iPhone, so they did what any sensible person would do-- started a company to solve their problem.
Originally intended to be a simple Bluetooth headset for children, Yip Yap has developed into an advanced technology that is now able to filter a child’s access to the Internet based on their parents’ desires. When you download the Yip Yap app, you’ll be prompted to create an Individual Private Network that only allows your child access to the people and content that you, as the parent, have authorized. Now Grandma can call Gracie without Mom worrying about her also accessing every dark corner of the World Wide Web.
Angela Smith is a firm believer in giving her children access to a plethora of knowledge, but she also wants to ensure this knowledge is constructive and helpful, not harmful. At a young age, violent and hateful content, not to mention offensive remarks made by Internet trolls, can cause irreparable damage to a child’s psyche. Yip Yap is a parents’ dream; soon after starting their company, Angela realized that if she and her husband hadn’t made this idea happen, someone else would have. “Children are the last group of people who are not connected,” she says, “and at some point, big companies will realize that and start implementing their own strategies.”
Yip Yap’s first product is Pipsqueak, the perfect mini-device equipped with Wifi-calling, YouTube, photo, video, games and, most importantly, parental control via the Yip Yap app. But Michael and Angela are thinking even further ahead. For parents who simply want to pass their own phone to their children to use, they can now download the Yip Yap app, lock the app so that when their children are using it they can’t exit it, and then have access to all the same features available on the Pipsqueak phone.
Angela and Michael are the perfect co-founders for this family-focused app. Assembly lines of updating devices, folding user manuals, and beta testing new updates means their four wonderful kids get a front-row seat to the magic of technology and entrepreneurship right from their home in Austin, Texas. Prospects for the future? Making Yip Yap a household name for families around the world and constantly being one step ahead of the Internet-- for the children’s sake.