LeapFrog My Pal Violet review

Leapfrog My Pal VioletWhile Maggie is still a bit too young to appreciate things like the Ubooly and Tiggly Shapes, she has found an electronic friend in the form of the LeapFrog My Pal Violet programmable puppy pal.

One of the things I’d dreaded about parenthood was the children’s toys that make horrible noises. I got that with a couple of things that seem to think that the sound of rusty nails scraping over extracted teeth are somehow a pleasant sound for an infant, bu the LeapFrog My Pal Violet seems to play audio very smoothly and not believe that the screams of the damned are a good sound to play for baby.

The audio is high enough quality that it doesn’t bother me, the volume is just about perfect for talking to a baby. You choose the music you want it to be able to play from a rather large list, and you also choose your child’s name and how it’s spelled so they’ll know this is their doggie.

The sadness starts when you realize you’re limited to about 15 songs, with different ones for daytime, afternoon, and night. You can change them by synching to the LeapFrog Connect program on your computer, but you’ll need to remember to do that regularly or you’ll start chanting that the muffin man lives over somewhere or other.

LeapFrog Connect

The only real complaint I have with this thing is there’s an “I like…” song in which it uses your child’s name, their favorite color, food, and animal. The stitching together of the audio sounds like it was done by a DJ throwing the needle on a 45. The pauses don’t fit, the words are said in a different intonation, and the cadence just sounds weird.

The LeapFrog application on my computer also refuses to shut up. Sorry, I just want to sync some changes, not have it belt out “what’s your name” at 2am. There are no settings for this that I can find. The sync app also I can’t tell if it’s built for a 2 year old or 53 year old. It’s just sort of in that weird range where it seems to have been built for someone not computer literate.

Eh, it’s a fun toy, and worth it. I’m just a nitpicky IT nerd.

LeapFrog My Pal Violet is available from Amazon for $21.99

3.5 / 5 stars