July 7, 2006

How Sweet Is The iCandy Apple Stroller?

icandy_animated_apple.gifBesides the fact that it will never be sold in the US with a name like iCandy Apple--and I'm surprised the Beatles and/or Apple haven't gone after them already, never mind the Bugaboo folks--I don't know much about this UK stroller.

iCandy appears to be a premium brand created by Little Shield, an otherwise unassuming, third-generation, family-owned British baby gear company who likes to do things the old-fashioned way. Like making you send the brougham down to the dry goods outfitter to collect your iCandy--or even to find out the price; they don't allow their products to be sold online, and they make you call even to find out the stockists. Needless to say, there's almost no product info or reviews out there, either, beyond the chirpy catalogue copy.

So if anyone has any firsthand experience shopping for or using an iCandy Apple pushchair/stroller, by all means, please share. Otherwise, here's what catches my eye:

  • The style is nice enough, but then, it's meant to look like a Bugaboo. [One DT reader has said they were pitched the iCandy as a "Bugaboo alternative which costs 100 pounds less."
  • That'd put the Apple at around 400 pounds, well above a Quinny Buzz (which goes for 330, but can be found for 270), and a little more than a Phil & Ted's (370). [Apparently, the UK is a whole other country, with its own currency and stroller safety regs, which makes prices crazy high. And which drives 5-10 Brits to email me each week asking if I know any US retailers who'll ship them a Bug. (No.)]
    first_wheels_city.jpg
  • But if we're going to start down the lookalike road, how about putting an Apple next to the First Wheels City Elite [left, red], which itself looks like the i'Coo/Hauck Infinity/Rock Star Baby stroller, and which sells for under 200 pounds?
  • What the iCandy Apple loses in price, it makes up in volume. With the stroller seat, the Apple weighs in at 13.6kg, about 30 lbs. I hope there are no stairs between where you are and where you're going. Both the Cameleon and the Phil& Ted's are 9kg, or 20lbs. Still, it's lighter than a Mt Buggy Urban, which is 35lbs.
  • One unique feature of the iCandy Apple is its 3- or 4-wheel conversion option. From the look of it, the front wheels fold toward each other and lock for "3 wheel jogger mode." Please correct me, real joggers, but I've always thought that these small, solid front tire rigs are just not good for actual running.
  • Other things like Maxi-Cosi carseat adapters, a carrycot option, and front/back-facing seat all seem familiar. The round Apple logo on the footmuff looks familiar, too, especially at a distance.

    Two "Internet" sites? Poppycock, just change the colour a trifle! iCandy UK site, Little Shield site [icandyuk.com, littleshield.co.uk]
    Baby Boom 2000--no name change yet!--has boilerplate on the iCandy Apple [babyboom2000.co.uk]

  • 24 Comments

    Hi there,

    I have seen one or two of these iCandys about in the U.K and one of my friends actually owned one was very disppointed with it and sold it on ebay after only using it twice. It does indeed look cute but it is very heavy and it is also cumbersome and bulky when folded. To get it into 3 wheel mode from 4 you have to remove the bar and slide the 3 wheels off and slide on the other set so not as the picture perceives.

    I have to say I am a very happy Bugaboo Cameleon owner and I was very reluctanat before buying it and I did test the First wheels city elite out but to be honest the only thing is if you want a bugaboo the feeling never goes away til you get one. I knew I just wouldn't be happy with a look alike and I also thought other would think I was a bugaboo wannabe with a look a like. The bugaboo has been well tested when i have taken it to Norway and it has out performed any other pushchair I have owned (which is quite a few!) over various terrains.

    My daughter is 2 now and it is still my daily pram of choice and she loves it so much she climbs in with herself with her snuggle blanket and will easily have a 2 hour nap. It is a price tag i wouldn't hesitate with now, it is worth the investament and when you check out the second hand seeling price of them you can almost recoupe most of your money back, they don't depreciate much at all.

    HTH

    Liv

    Here is a report from an actual iCandy Apple owner as I do feel there is too much speculation here!

    Greg has not seen the product and Liv (I thought this was a Daddy site!) talks about her "friends"

    My sister-in-law was brand-washed into buying the Cameleon in January but we saw the iCandy and fell in love with (dare I say it!) its sexy styling. What really put us off the Cameleon was the slope of the carrycot towards the babies head (to which the retailer replied - put a couple of bricks at the foot end to balance!) The iCandy has Carrycot stabilisers.

    We have been so happy with the iCandy and the everyday admiring glances and comments that we get certainly testify to this. It has been 100% reliable and has met every challenge including two rigorous holidays (vacations.)

    I admit that if I were getting on and off buses every day I might not want such a large pushchair but that would be the same with a Bugaboo. However with its larger dimensions and my growing son the iCandy will be used for much longer than my sister-in-laws Bugaboo which is already showing signs of being outgrown.

    If anyone would like any further information from a non-brand washed Dad then please ask!!

    Oh - I also paid less than a Buzz!!

    [thanks for the hands-on account. We're at 2.5yo and our Cameleon still fits fine, And we never had this head tilt problem, either, so our Bugaboo bricks went unused. As for the daddy site thing, I'd think a dads-only site might bug women as much as a moms-only site bugs me. keep'em coming -ed.]

    As I'm a first time 6'3" tall father we're having trouble deciding on a pram that will be tall enough for me to push comforably. Any suggestions? At the moment we're trying to decide between the iCandy Apple, Buzz, Bugaboo Cameleon, Gracco Quatro Tour TS, and Chicco Trio S3. If anyone has views on the relative merits of these or has an alternative suggestion it would be much appreciated. We are also keen on the maxi-cosi carseat and would like to be able to slot it into the pushchair.

    Hi. My sister has just got a 2nd Hand Apple which seems to be jammed and won't fold down. Is there a simple explanation for this which we're missing? Ta in advance

    Mike

    The iCandy Apple is still brilliant - now coming up to nearly 1 years use and it is really fantastic! The fold is a little specialised - like the Mutsy and Speedy SX. Push towards chrome hub NOT DOWN towards the floor. It is a bit like a trombone action - handle needs to go in on itself until you hear a click - you will feel the springs click into place.

    I have heard that iCandy is launching a new addition to the Apple which will be the Pear (a tandem) and I cant wait for that as we are expecting number two later this year which will be perfect as we will be able to convert our Apple to a Pear!

    Hi -

    Another 'Mum' review of the iCandy Apple from a 'Real life' user. We chose the iCandy Apple as it seemed to have more features like forward / rear facing pushchair, the handlebar is moveable (which is good for short & tall people because you can adjust it depending on who is pushing), you can lock the car seat onto the frame with no hassle, a large shopping basket, great design etc

    We have found the icandy very good as we are 4 months in. The downsides are; our daughter has nearly outgrown the carrycot so we are having to put her in the pushchair early (she doesn't seem to be complaining), poor instructions - someone had to show us how to put the puchchair into the recline position, the foot bar of the pushchair doesn't lie flat therefore when it is in recline mode our daughters feet are in the air. Finally the art of collapsing took a while as it really is a knack but once you have mastered it is a doddle (just do as Jeff says).

    We paid £399 for the pushchair, carrycot combo and an additional £99 for the maxi cosi car seat and think this was good value.

    We hope this helps.

    sorry...I stand corrected...my husband says we paid £299 for the iCandy Apple and not £399 (that was the total with the carseat)

    The iCandy Apple looks exactly like the Valco Rad, expect of course the Rad doesn't do the 3 wheel conversion.

    The iCandy Pear they have coming out soon looks like a super cool way(s) to carry 2 kids.

    We bought an icandy becasue it did everything that we wanted (allowed baby to lye flat when first born, when sitting the baby can face pusher) - It has been brilliant, we've taken it on the beach - on sand, round the city, through country tracks, deep mud and grass.

    The basket below the pram is big and quite easy to access - I managed to take my holiday packing all under the pram - and it;s big enough for all my local food shopping including a big veg shop.

    Now my Baby is bigger he's sitting up facing me - here is the only snag... The recline position is not flat and my baby has to sleep with his feet in the air! (he's never in there for long when sleeping - so he;s alright and when he wakes up it;s easy to allow him to look around again.

    The buttons on the side of the pram are awkward to manouver - they require alot of pressure.

    This is a great pram for tall people, the hand rail can extend and the baby is not too low (like the bugaboo - which was at my husbands knees).

    Although we'd have loved the pram in a different colour - it hasn;t got dirty yet (7months later).

    Overall we like a lot and I'm pleased we bought it.

    I'm looking for some advice on the icandy apple. Am expecting baby nuber three and whilst my existing Quinny Speedi is in ok condition, it is looking a bit tired. Also the seat does not go fully upright and the shopping basket is woefully inadequate - two things which have annoyed me since purchase. I'm considering the apple as I already own a barely used maxi cosi car seat which was bought as a package with my speedi when baby two was 6 months old. Also in the package was a dreami carrycot, again unused. I know that the maxi cosi car seat fits the icandy, has anyone tried to fit the dreami on as well? I know that the adapters for the speedi are the same for both carrycot and car seat, it seems a shame to pay extra for an icandy carrycot when i have a brand new dreami already.

    We have the Valco Rad (and indeed I cannot see any difference except for the wheel conversion) and it is great. I am 6ft tall and have the push bar fully extended and dh lowers the pushbar to accommodate his 5ft8 height.

    We love this pram and tall people always ask me where we got this pram because they can see me push the pram without looking like the hunchback of the NotreDame.

    It is indeed not a small pram to put in the car, but if you are out a lot with your child then you really need to give them a good solid pram with excellent suspension.

    we got the icandy in a nice john major beige and, similarly to his government, second time we took it out a wheel fell off.

    [sorry to hear it, but I love the nostalgic political references! -ed.]

    You may not have had the wheels fixed in correctly - they are removable, if you had them in correctly then speak to iCandy directly, i'm sure they'll sort it out.

    I have just bought the iCandy Apple for my second child (a girl) who is due in 8 weeks so as far as using it, it's not happened yet but as soon as I saw it i knew it was the pram i wanted and had to have. In my opinion, the bugaboo and buzz look a lot cheaper than the apple and look as thoguh they would become jammed quite easily. At least with the 'heavyweight' of the apple you're gonna be losing a lot more weight if you were just pushing a feather around.

    I bought the stroller and carrycot combi and the price of it was £399 but the shop had a 10% day so i got it for £360 and got the maxi cosi car seat off ebay for £30. It was quite easy to buy as i went to an independent nursery shop and they had it in there. It was easy really! I haven't seen many (1 or 2, literally) so it's not so common as the buzz or bugaboo which seems to be on a conveyor belt out of mothercare and vice versa with all their problems. I'll come back here after i've had the baby and let you all know how i'm getting on with it....

    heres to hoping it's a good pram!!

    We have had the iCandy Apple for about 2 months and have had a mixed experience.

    It really is quite hefty but the main difficulty is the fold-down size. One trick we've learned is to pop off the front and back wheels which makes it a much smaller beast!

    Out handle got stuck too almost immediately after we got it and we couldn't fold the thing for weeks! We found after trial and error that a good shot of WD40 into the joints did the trick beautifully and now we have no problems. It was probably stuck up with sand and dust as we live in Cairo!

    On that note, it really is a very smooth ride for our 1 year-old daughter. WE switched to the 3 wheel mode as the streets here make the pot-holed British roads look like olympic race tracks!

    I would really recommend this pushchair, and we are especially pleased that we will be able to make it a very classy double when we have baby number 2! Has anyone bought the iCandy Pear converter kit yet? What's it like? How much is it? Etc Etc!

    I got my I candy from my catalogue - additions direct to those of you in the uk. It was £499 I think? I cot the bag and muff free as I brought the carry cot.

    I love my pushchair its so stylish and practical

    We've had the iCandy for 12 months and after a few initial teething problems are more than happy with the product. You do need to give all the joints a good quirt with WD40 before you start to try and fold down. Its not essential but does help. Its an adaptable and robust product and the customer service is excellent. They are a good, traditional British family business. We're in the process of buying the convertor which will turn the single pram into a double - new baby on the way. That flexibility is great.

    Hey all, I have been researching doubles for what seems like forever!! I was in a shop today, the last baby shop in my town and was introduced to the icandy name. They are possibly bringing it into Canada in the new year (2009) So I have quickly changed my focus to this wee number. The pear is what I am most interested in. Who has it? What do you think? Can you share your thoughts please. I'm so intrigued. Thank you.


    Jop, the ICandy Apple looks exactly like Valco RAD stroller that I have....I love my Valco RAD stroller. Not only that it looks great, but it has big basket, adjustable handle(I'm short, husband tall), it is light, very easy to fold, easy to take apart to wash(dries quickly too)...The only negative that I can think of: Not for Offroad use...small front wheels are not cutting it thru sand, rocks & dirt trails...
    I'm happy with my choice, my son is 1,5 years old and RAD is in condition to handle second one!
    Take care

    And we are considering the iCandy Pear as we are expecting our second in a few months. We presently have an Uppababy Vista which is very similar to the iCandy Apple. We are quite satisfied with it but it doesn't have a double stroller conversion kit like the Apple does.

    We live in Canada and no one here sells iCandys here so were wondering if anyone has any experiences or know of resellers that would deliver overseas (or Canada in particular)?

    I'm from Holland and trying to buy the converter online (by email). I have a childwheels c-max, which is similar to the iCandy Apple.

    for delivery overseas:
    http://www.katiesplaypen.co.uk/
    http://www.bumpsbabiesandbeyond.co.uk/

    Good luck!


    I have my iCandy Pear stroller for sale. if anybody is interested they can contact me at

    sandraschuster@comcast.net

    Sandy

    Just been shopping for prams in Cheltenham and one shop had a good selection including Quinnys, Silver Cross, Mamas and Papas and also the iCandy.
    Of all the prams we liked the look of, the iCandy was the lightest and easiest to fold and unfold (assuming we are talking about the frame only here).
    The only issue we have is the need for converter pegs needed to fit the maxi cosy car seat. They are not fixed to the stroller or the car seat and so will be easily lost. They also cost 30 pounds bringing everything to a tidy 530 pounds.
    We have subsequently looked at the Mothercare "Spin" which looks excellent.
    If we read negative reviews we'll be back for the iCandy.
    Hope this helps.

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