Santa Claus holds a large amount of magic during the holiday season, and besides the presents, one of the reasons he is so magical is because there is so much mystery surrounding him. He lives at the North Pole with no one around for miles. He is seen once a year. His best friends are elves and reindeer which we never run into down here, closer to the equator. Oh, and of course, somehow he can fly without an airplane. Now that so much of Santa’s mystery is being made available to us and our children, is Santa Claus’s mystery disappearing before our eyes?
If you are a tech-savvy youngster this holiday season, and of course have already received the latest Google and Microsoft technology, you now have the opportunity to follow every minute of Santa’s journey this year. Microsoft already had a tracker last year, which they developed along with the North American Aerospace Defense Command, which also included games for children to play.
But now Google has also developed its own Santa Tracker and has announced it will unveil a new game every day leading up to Christmas Eve, a kind of digital Advent Calendar.
The media is already calling it the Santa Wars and don’t think that your kids do not already know all about the competition.
Kids can also monitor Santa’s route with a custom app. Google is using its own Google Maps to develop the technology for the kids to follow.
If following Santa’s sleigh were not enough now kids can also Skype Santa at his home in the North Pole. Apparently, Santa has a really good Wi-Fi connection out there.
The app is called “Hello Santa” and connects kids to a real-life Santa at the other side of their video call.
Kids are much smarter than we sometime give them credit for, so how long until they start realizing Santa is talking to them and their friends at the same time? How long before the constant gratification of Santa apps begin to erase the mystery right before their eyes?
Skyping Santa Claus will be just like taking your child to the mall. Of course this way there are no long lines for you and your child to wait through. But let’s be honest, isn’t the wait part of what makes sitting on Santa’s lap so mystical?
Calls to the Hello Santa app have no time limits, but of course there is a small fee so make sure you monitor your youngster. The company that developed the Hello Santa app is planning on using the same technology for other imaginary characters that your children can see face to face. The Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy are early favorites for the next app.
We are accustomed to getting everything how and when we want it in our technological age. Certainly there have been many unbelievable advances that we should not feel the least bit guilty about indulging in. But doesn’t instant gratification wear off quicker than something we had to wait for and perhaps had to guess at? If Santa Claus keeps becoming more and more accessible it may not be long before the mystery begins to fade from our children’s eyes. Who really needs that right now?
By Nick Manai