Sadly, Our Free Starter Must Ride Into the Sunset

Eric Braun Blog

cowboy-283449_960_720Like a humble cowboy who has done his job and is overstaying his welcome, 30hands Starter must ride into the sunset. The road has ended and the trail is clear. We developed 30hands Storyteller to help kids learn better in a fun way, unsure if this iterative, storyboard method of creating a presentation that becomes a video would resonate with teachers and students. But we found that it has. If you still believe in this deep method and model of formative assessment and easy creation of video content, please show your support by talking to your school administration about upgrading to 30hands Pro (on the iPad) or 30hands Web (for Chrome). We have more improvements and functionality on the way, like extended video slide durations, improvements to “Enhanced Drawing”, better search filtering and usability improvements.

To help with the transition away from the free Starter version, we will be offering 30hands Pro at a discounted price of $4.99 through June 2017. Apple’s VPP for education still applies. Think of the value you get: for the cost of a single ice cream party for your class, they get fun learning for the whole year, which is like ice cream for the whole year!. For 30hands Web, we will extend the free trial period as needed for you to better evaluate it as you discuss site licenses with your schools.30handsPro-icecream

We understand that people like things that are free, but the sustainability of 30hands Pro and 30hands Web depends on the departure of 30hands Starter. Companies cannot survive on free, and we feel we owe those dedicated paid users the chance to keep thriving and using this award-winning app for Digital Storytelling.

It’s been a great road for Starter. With over 2,000,000 downloads, it has done its job to get the word out and get educators and students to better understand the power of iterative creativity and the value of Digital Storytelling in the classroom.

Our model of iterative creativity for creating videos as formative assessments and flipping the classroom has proven to be valued by educators, and we hope to continue this long into the future to support exciting and innovative change that is happening within education. More and more people are looking at the value of video in learning from both a process and end product standpoint. The easy and structured approach to video creation taken by 30hands Storyteller makes video more accessible to more students and teachers. 

Improved Learning for Students and Colleagues

30hands Storyteller improves learning outcomes as a formative assessment tool that allows kids to show what they know through the iterative process of easily creating a video. This matters a great deal to us. Learning should not be all fun and games, but we believe that creating videos makes learning fun and engaging as long as it is rooted in core pedagogy.

Faster and Easier Video Creation for Teachers

30hands Storyteller is a great way for teachers to show what they know, too, in the way of learning videos for their students and peers. 30hands makes it faster and easier to create a video lesson from Google Slide or PowerPoint presentations than any other application. If your presentation is great already, just import it, narrate and publish as a video. That takes minutes. If you use your presentation as a guideline, you can enhance it in 30hands or build it from scratch, following the lesson flow you have already created.

Short and Concise is Ten Times as Nice

The iterative nature of 30hands Storyteller allows teachers and trainers to keep the videos concise. We’ve seen hour-long lectures reduced to 6 minutes when there is a focus on making the messages concise. That’s a 10x improvement! The beauty of a video is that it can be viewed over and over again by the learners, and if it’s shorter and more concise, it’s more likely that people will review the lessons and messages. Multiple views results in better retention of the materials and concepts.

So, as we all know, there comes a time, when change must happen, when the good of the future takes hold and whispers into the ear. We stoop down and say goodbye to old Blue. We wrestle back the tears, get back on that horse and holler, “Giddyup!” This is that time. There’s a new kid in town, and she needs the opportunity to do her job. That new kid is 30hands Pro. Yes, she’s been here for a bit, but now it’s her time to shine.

Thanks to the great support of creative and enthusiastic teachers, bloggers, students and other supporters, 30hands Storyteller has over 2.5 million users and still growing. Students and teachers are creating great videos to demonstrate learning and teaching. Like that lonely cowboy, we are humbled and honored that so many people have taken interest in what we created 4 years ago.

If you have any questions or concerns regarding this announcement, please don’t hesitate to contact me at, at or at 781-982-9555.

Thank you for your tremendous support!

Eric Braun
CEO & Co-Founder
30hands Learning

There’s a new dawn for 30hands Storyteller. Check out Pro for iPad and Web for Chrome.

New Dawn for 30hands Storyteller

New Dawn for 30hands Storyteller


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