toys

Buckyballs are back

Years ago – six years ago, to be exact – a toy called Buckyballs came under attack by government officials intent on destroying fun. The Consumer Product Safety Commission banned the toys,
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Turning your toys into robots with Circuit Cubes

Circuit Cubes creates little blocks that bring life to your LEGOs, Mega Bloks, things found in the r

Former DreamWorks exec Shawn Dennis joins GoldieBlox as president

GoldieBlox, a startup looking to get girls hooked on engineering and other STEM fields, has hired Shawn Dennis as its first president. Dennis was most recently the head of brand and franchise developm

This robot can solve a Rubik’s Cube in .38 seconds

When future generations look back on 2018 what will they remember? Not much, I suspect, except for this amazing robot that can solve a Rubik’s cube in .38 seconds. The video, above, shows the cu

Kids app maker Toca Boca debuts its first consumer product collection at Target

Toca Boca, a hugely popular kids’ app maker, has grown to over 170 million downloads across its line of 38 apps, which 13 million children use every month. Now, the company is transitioning its

Time 4 Machine promises to bring us back to an age of metal and clockwork

The tinging of tiny hammers from the heart of Dwarf Mountains may now be lost to the mists of time but you, my friend, can still make magically complex metallic contrivances in the comfort of your own

Sphero’s new toy is a chatty Spider-Man

Sphero continues its partnership with Disney today, with the launch of a new toy based on the Marvel superhero Spider-Man. But where BB-8 and Lightning McQueen could move around the room, Spider-Man i

How Osmo decides to make its tangible, high-tech toys

Many toys today include high-tech and interactive components that keep kids in front of screens. But when it comes to health and educational development, studies have found that kids benefit from thin

Makeblock raises $30 million for robot-building kits for kids

There’s now a Disney Princess toy subscription service

Subscription-based toy company Pley.com entered the Disney accelerator last year with a toy rental business that would ship out toys like Lego, American Girl or Hot Wheels, which could be played wi

LEGO Life is a new social network where kids can share their creations

Club Penguin may be shutting down, but there’s a new social network for kids arriving today from LEGO. The company known for its physical blocks and building sets is launching LEGO Life, a safe,

Bots_alive kit imbues toy robots with charming, lifelike AI

There will be no shortage at Toy Fair next month of robots and gadgets promising artificial intelligence — and generally falling short. But a more modest approach from an actual AI researcher has pr

Amazon launches a subscription service for STEM toys

Amazon today unveiled a new subscription program aimed at parents called STEM Club, which delivers educational toys to your home for $19.99 per month. The retailer says it will hand-pick which toys

You should probably still avoid toys that talk with your kids

If you were thinking of getting your kid a little doll or robot that they can talk to — and, critically, that responds — you should probably hold off for a few years. A complaint to the FTC filed

Mattel’s ThingMaker, the 3D printer that let kids make their own toys, delayed until next year

Remember ThingMaker? Mattel’s $300 3D printer that would let kids print out their own toys? Its ship date – which was supposed to be this month – just got pushed back another year,

Remember hoverboards? Half a million are being recalled as fire hazards

Hoverboards! The must-have trash gadget of the holidays, now gathering dust in a million closets and garages nationwide, is being recalled in even larger numbers than before due to "a risk of the prod

Furby gets updated again for the smartphone era

A good Furby doesn’t die, it just runs out of batteries. And maybe, if you’re lucky, it evolves every few years or so. Back in 2012, Hasbro brought the cuddly little iconic monster back from the t

Happy Atoms launches to teach kids about the wonders of molecules

While I absolutely despise most STEM toys I’m going to give Happy Atoms a pass simply because it is aimed at educators and not for the home market. Created by chemistry set maker Thames & Ko

Even Barbie Has A Smart Home And Hoverboard Now

Consumers may have been slow to adopt smart home technology, but that’s not the case for Barbie. At the recent New York Toy Fair, Mattel unveiled a newly upgraded – and now tech-enabled &#

The Serious Business Of Play

“The next big thing will start out looking like a toy.” At least according to A16Z partner Chris Dixon. He used the phrase to explain why incumbents often confuse new, disruptive threats to their
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