Dr. Panda Supermarket by Dr. Panda is a universal app for iOS which features Dr. Panda in the supermarket along with many of his friends we have seen in previous apps including the most recent Dr. Panda Daycare. Dr. Panda is based in Chengdu, China where the national animal is a giant panda! The app features the animals as they go grocery shopping and a variety of ten themed mini games which vary from shopping using a list, organizing differently shaped boxes, cleaning up spills and more with six different animals and their children. The app practices fine motor, critical thinking and creative play skills. It does not contain any language either written or spoken which means it will appeal to toddlers to early preschool age children.
I loved the illustrations and graphics within the app. I also really liked the parent lock a lot, it requires parents to tap on the for parents section and then tap on a lock three times to continue which will ensure that kids do not get into the parent’s section by mistake. This is also where you can turn off the promotions screen which I promptly did. My son’s favorite mini game was buying the candy, although he was disappointed when he went to the checkout that he could not “pay” for it. My son also enjoyed mopping up the spills, eating cookies (although he wished he could have hot chocolate while mommy had her coffee) and filling out the shopping list.
In terms of enhancements, I thought some of the mini games were a little bit odd. I had a hard time figuring out the recycling mini game as I am typically used to seeing metal, paper, glass and “other”. This app had batteries/electronics, paper and then glass. The coffee cups didn’t really seem to fit in the paper category, but that is where you had to put them for the game. I did like that the containers “spit back” the items if they were placed in the wrong bin but would like to see an additional bin added. I also thought that the prices within the app for the groceries were a bit unrealistic – I’m not used to having to pay $10 for a loaf of bread of $25 for oranges. I would like to see these tweaked a bit to more realistic prices as well as being able to check out at the end of the shopping trip with coins and dollars (or the appropriate currency) which can help children practice math skills. I also thought the mini game where you ride down the escalator and get into a taxi was a bit unrealistic for how we grocery shopped as I typically drive there and drive home. I would also love to see Dr. Panda be involved in the app either running the cash register, helping pick out grocery items or in other spots within the app. My son enjoyed the register, but did not understand why we couldn’t scan the items in our cart and instead it just did the vegetables’. Another enhancement would be to allow children to make their own grocery list and touch the different items such as pineapples, banana’s, milk and more to fill out their own grocery list just like you do at a regular grocery store.
This is a solid app which your children will enjoy. With a few small tweaks as mentioned above, it will make the app more realistic and help it appeal to a wider audience of people. My son asked me when we could go to the grocery store and go shopping next time! Check out our reviews of Dr. Panda Teach Me, Dr. Panda Hospital, Dr. Panda Veggie Garden, Dr. Panda’s Daycare, Dr. Panda Restaurant, There are no external links (outside of the parent’s section, no in app purchases or advertising within the app.
Dr. Panda Supermarket
by Dr. Panda Ltd
Price: $2.99 USD
**Winner of the Children's Tech Review Editor's Choice Award!** If your kid has ever wanted to run their own store, here's their chance!
NOTE: A fee was received to expedite this review to the top of our waiting list but this payment has not influenced the objectivity of the review and all opinions have been offered honestly.
Alison, the American iMum is from Massachusetts. She lives there with her two sons and husband. In their spare time, they enjoy playing outside, enjoying nature and of course testing apps and fantastic products on their devices. My older son loves technology and loves testing out the “latest and newest” apps and tech. I love sharing information about apps and products with others to help them make decisions without feeling overwhelmed with all of the choices.