Almost a year ago, the Japanese Ministry of Defense made quite a splash when it revealed a spherical, remote-controlled aircraft
that could zip around a room, roll along the ground, and even bounce off obstacles without losing control. But while it was mainly designed for search and rescue operations, many R/C enthusiasts took one look at that hovering Death Star and said, "I have got to get me one of those." Luckily, toy company Kyosho must have been listening, since it recently released a similar flying machine of its own for consumers. Kyosho's "Space Ball" can remain airborne while taking just as much punishment and even emits a fragrance to freshen up a room in the process.
Earlier this year, inventor Jamie Mantzel unveiled a prototype of a remote-controlled robot he had nicknamed "the greatest toy in the universe"
in a YouTube video that garnered over 2 million hits in three days. In the video, an exuberant Mantzel demonstrated how the six-legged creation could fire different toy weapons and react to hits when battling another bot. Now, just in time for the holiday season, distributor Wow! Stuff has expanded the idea into a full-fledged toy line, called "Combat Creatures," starting with the inventor's original model, now named the "Attacknid."
Belkin has announced the launch of its WeMo Baby device that turns any iOS device into a digital baby monitor. Comprising a Wi-Fi connecting baby monitor and an accompanying iOS app, the WeMo Baby lets anxious parents listen to high-quality audio from their baby’s room whether they're in the next room or the other side of the world … though it's probably not a good idea that the baby is left that unattended.
After the birth of a child, many a well-intentioned parent has started to put together a baby memory box or baby journal, filled with keepsakes and mementos from their little-ones first year. But amid a blur of dirty diapers and messy feeds the majority lose momentum, Mementobox is a new iPhone app which it's hoped will see more parents stick with it by digitizing the process.
The rate at which children grow, especially from being new-born to the age of around six-years-old, is scary. One day they're a helpless ball of flesh and bones, the next they're walking, talking, and starting school. This means that new parents have to continually buy new things for their child that may only last them a matter of months. While a bicycle may not be top of the agenda at such a young age, for a child to learn to ride one means buying several different models over the course of just a few years as they first learn, and then master, the art. Which is what led Noelia Vallano Alvaro to design B'kid: one bike designed to last a child from the age of two right through to the age of six.
The Woogie is an iPhone and iPod touch case that makes your Apple device considerably more huggable than those designed to add a keyboard
or stop a bullet
. Intended for those times you pass your iPhone to your kids, the new Woogie from Griffin Technology comes as one of two characters, which an accompanying app brings to life with your iPhone screen becoming the face of the interactive playmate.
Children today are growing up on mobile devices. Concepts like pinch-to-zoom and slide to unlock – foreign to adults before the iPhone launched in 2007 – are as natural as breathing to today's kids. You love your children, but it can be unsettling to see your rambunctious four-year-old hoisting your $500 iPad. There are several ways around this: invest in AppleCare or other insurance, buy a Kindle Fire or similar budget tablet, or invest in a tablet dedicated for kids. Ematic is hoping you choose the latter, and buy little Susie her own FunTab Pro.
If product releases are anything to go by, it seems that almost every child is going to be getting a tablet computer for Christmas this year. There's the VTech InnoTab 2
, the Leappad 2,
the Toys"R"Us Tabeo
, and that's before you consider the myriad of child-centric add-ons for iPads
. Also jostling for position on your little-ones Christmas list is the newly released Android-toting MEEP! from Oregon Scientific.
As fun as the trampoline is, it's but a small oasis of bounce in a world ruled by rigid ground. The SMB Trampoline modulus finds out what happens when you expand the trampoline into an entire network. What happens is a lot more bouncy fun.
There's no shortage of tablet computers for children. There's the Leappad 2
, the VTech InnoTab 2
, even the non-functional wooden Tinker Tablet
– and that's before you consider the many ways of turning iPads into children's toys
. In fact, it sometimes it seems like children have now stopped playing with anything other than tablet computers, which probably explains why Toys"R"Us has launched its own tablet for kids, the Android-powered Tabeo.