Parents are busy at the best of times, but during the summer holidays it’s a whole different ball game. With the kids at home, there’s even more pressure to keep them entertained. Add to that the long car journeys for family trips and holidays and you’ve got a recipe for that dreaded phrase… ‘I’m boooooooored’. So this summer, as part of the wider Summer Sorted campaign, Sainsbury’s wanted to help parents keep the kids entertained.


With the high penetration of smartphones amongst families and continued growth in popularity of tablets, we’ve seen parents increasingly use these devices to entertain their children. But there’s often guilt associated with this ‘screen parenting’. So we looked create a mobile game that balances entertainment and education.


We created an iOS and Android App, ‘iSPIES’. Based on the timeless family favourite, I-Spy, the free App allows children to explore and discover incredible universes, and using the phones’ technology we allowed children to immerse themselves in these worlds. Exploring them by physically moving the phone around like a viewfinder. And to add longevity we made it possible for players to challenge each other and play with their friends. Finally, we filled the game full of tips, facts and craft ideas to fire their imaginations.

The game extended well beyond the App itself. In-store the world of iSPIES came to life through signs and an activity pack, whilst we’re playing a season long game of iSPIES on Sainsbury’s social platforms.


iSPIES generated significant buzz and was a family favourite during the summer. The app was downloaded over 52,000 times across a range of devices up and down the UK, with 30% of people played the game up to six times and at its peak we had 14.000 spies playing the game per week - that's a lot of spying!