New Toys that Embrace Techy Trends
Toy and game maker Roam & Wander have introduced a line of new plush toys that blend the physical interaction of stuffed animals with the fun and educational potential of touch-screen and app technologies.
In true tech world fashion, toy maker and game producer, Roam & Wander, used a KickStarter campaign to successfully fund its latest line of high-tech plush toy products. The firm met its goal and raised over $27,000 to forward product development efforts. The strong support from the crowd-funding community must be a testament to Roam & Wander’s innovative and fun products. The company’s founder, Jason Warren, explains that his company makes tech toys and games for children between 2 and 6 years old. Today, this age group enjoys increasing exposure to iPads and other easy-to-use technology. Many apps provide interactive and educational programs for people of all ages; Roam & Wander has responded to the opportunities for uniting learning and play. They leverage established touch-screen technology to create engaging toys, their first and primary products being DiDi and Tutu, bear and bunny stuffed animals, respectively.
Warren describes DiDi and TuTu as bigger, modern Tamagochis, but “Way more awesome.” Kids interact with and even take care of their cute animals, allowing them to form a sense of responsibility while learning and enjoying the intersection of technology and tradition in the virtual and tangible toys. The Roam & Wander toys include the physical plush toy, the signature Magic Touch screen, and the unique app, which allows TuTu and DiDi to come to life. Children can feed their bears and rabbits, brush their teeth to develop good hygiene habits, and rock them to sleep. The toys respond to these actions and “grow” with the kids. They will get a cavity if their owner does not brush their teeth everyday, for example, which teaches kids both the importance of brushing and consequences of avoiding it.
Modern Edutainment and fun-ucation!
Education is a key component of Roam & Wander toys. The app can read stories to children and has features to help them learn to read. These aspects provide a leg-up for young children in their elementary school preparation. Parents feel good about letting their kids play with TuTu and DiDi because the toys ensure interactive, fun, and educational “real play” rather than mindless touch-screen couch time. Various games programmed into the app help kids gain early, foundational knowledge and skills. Feature programs help kids to learn letters and numbers as well as colors and shapes. The toys “grow” with kids in terms of education, too. As they begin to master these introductory subjects, games advance and introduce both phonics and basic reading. What’s more, when iPhone or iPad time is over, the stuffed animals make fantastical normal teddy bears.
The Roam & Wander team believes it is revolutionizing playtime and embracing all that technology has to offer with DiDi and TuTu. Special early offers helped with the KickStarter campaign’s success and have encouraged families to try out the products. Parents maintain control of their kids’ screen time while allowing kids to use their imaginations. Individual creativity and popular, familiar technologies come together to help kids engage, learn, and have fun.