Apps for apes: give your old iPad to a bored orangutan

Apps for apes: give your old iPad to a bored orangutan
Did you know that there's a special program which aims to enrich the lives of orangutans living in zoos by donating iPads to those zoos? These iPads are then used to entertain our intelligent friends and bring some diversity to their otherwise monotonous lives. That program is called "Apps for Apes" and the latest zoo to take advantage of it is the Smithsonian National Zoo.

Looking for ways to improve the lifestyle of its orangutans, the ape keepers at the zoo decided that they should turn to the Orangutan Outreach organization and the "Apps for Apes" program. Initially, the zoo had only one iPad which it used to run various kinds of apps such as ones simulating musical instruments like piano and drums, drawing apps and even some brain games. Apparently, even orangutans could not resist the allure of the iPad as the program is considered to be a success not only by Smithsonian, but also by the other zoos that participate. When asked what they like most about the iPad, most orangutans from the zoo responded with "I really enjoy the snappy dual-core processor and large assortment of applications, although the UI seems a bit too simplistic. I would like to try something a bit more advanced, like an OS with widgets and real multitasking, for example."

Those apes sure know what they are talking about! All joking aside, those of you who'd like to become part of the program and help some orangutans stimulate their mental activity can donate their old iPad to Orangutan Outreach here. Alternatively, you can just send it to our office. After all, we're not that different. Want to exchange pics?

Hit the play button below for a few minutes of orangutan vs iPad action.

source: SmithsonianScience via SlashGear



1. drnggaj33

Posts: 127; Member since: Feb 29, 2012

turning into media take out now smh

2. _Bone_

Posts: 2155; Member since: Oct 29, 2012

Wow, those are some hairy fanboys.

3. Cyan3boN

Posts: 446; Member since: Feb 23, 2012

or they can buy a cheap android tablet with a resistive touch screen which will cost lesser than a second hand ipad.

10. stealthd unregistered

They want them to play with them, not throw them against a wall in frustration.

4. PhoneArenaUser

Posts: 5498; Member since: Aug 05, 2011

Does that mean that apes are caching up with "some" people?

5. Nathan_ingx

Posts: 4769; Member since: Mar 07, 2012

I think they're not quite there yet...maybe they'll figure out which OS is what and later, they might even switch to Android or WP figuring out that iMaps actually lead them to the APPLE tree instead of the banana tree.

6. corporateJP

Posts: 2458; Member since: Nov 28, 2009

Planet of the Apes. Non-fiction.

7. Droiddoes unregistered

That orangutan is thinking "wait, you said this is the NEW ipad, it looks and acts exactly like the old one, the f*ck is this? I'll not have my intelligence insultied, good day sir."

8. TheMan

Posts: 494; Member since: Sep 21, 2012

Will they throw iPads instead of feces? The painting and music apps could be interesting. Elephants and other Great Apes besides orangs have shown an interest in painting and making music (not electronically).

9. rusticguy

Posts: 2828; Member since: Aug 11, 2012

Gift the iPad to Balmer ... he will act better on those apps :)

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit for samples and additional information.