SMART TOYS Kids ages 3 and up can go high-tech with MATTEL’s Barbie Hello Dreamhouse, Barbie’s very own smarthouse. This two-story home has innovative features designed for modern kids and is reflective of the next wave of innovation in the home. Floor sensors recognize where Barbie and her friends are in the house, the stairs turn into a slide, and the elevator is motorized. The Dreamhouse also features speech recognition, and an accompanying app allows for further customization.
Edwin the Duck, from PI LAB, is an app-connected smart toy that guides kids through stories, games, and songs. Edwin features motion-based interaction and a Bluetooth wireless connection to work alongside the primary app, as well as three additional apps. Made of soft, surgical-grade BPA-free silicon, kids can use Edwin to play games, take him in the bath, light their rooms as a night-light, and play music through the Bluetooth speaker.
OSMO’s new Osmo Coding teaches kids ages 5 to 12 to code using physical blocks that snap together. Designed for use with the existing Osmo game system, Osmo Coding pairs Osmo’s first character, Awbie, with the company’s Reflective Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology. Kids can guide Awbie on a journey to find strawberries by arranging physical pieces of code. Each physical code block contains a unique command that can be sequenced with other commands. Combined with parameter, loop, and boolean (if-then) blocks, kids can easily program complex sequences for Awbie to follow in the open-ended world the app offers.
ACTEV MOTORS’ Arrow Smart-Kart is an interactive electric go-kart for kids. Arrow immerses riders ages 5 to 9 in a fun and safe driving experience. Arrow can be configured to match each driver’s skill level. The app connects to the Smart-Kart via Wi-Fi and equips parents with several safety features, including an adjustable maximum speed limit of 12 mph, collision avoidance that will automatically stop Arrow if it detects an obstacle, an emergency stop button, geo-fencing that prevents the driver from going outside a parent-defined geographic boundary, and an inactivity timer that alerts adults if Arrow is motionless for a selectable time period. Plus, they can monitor stats such as total driving time and total distance. Kids can even download synthesized engine sounds from an online sound library. In addition to the base model, enhancement accessories—sold separately—let kids customize their kart to create an even more complete experience.
22 THE TOY BOOK | May/June 2016 | TOYBOOK.COm
Many of us are traveling to Denver for the American Specialty Toy Retailing Association’s (ASTRA’s) Marketplace & Academy trade show, and in...