According to a report on ABC News, the biggest, hottest item at the Toy Fair this year wasn’t a toy itself, but something that the hottest toys there connect to: Apple’s iPad. Of the tons of classic and new toys on display on the 266,229 square feet of the Javits Center, the iPad is becoming as ubiquitous as the actual toys themselves.
Fisher-Price’s Imaginenext Apptivity Fortress (where DO they get these names) is completely built around the iPad, while Barbie has her very own iPad Digital Makeup Mirror. Yikes!
“I have never seen so many toys that incorporated an iPad into the play pattern,” Andrea Smith, Mashable’s Lifestyle Editor told ABC News. “Last year was the iPod touch and iPhone, and I think this year it was all iPad, from Barbie to the Hot Wheels.”
The iPad brand is the one to watch, as most folks in the industry know, including toy makers. While Android tablets aren’t missing from the Toy Fair displays, they weren’t the most visible. According to a recent Nielsen report, 48 percent of kids between the ages of 6 to 12 want an iPad, and 36 percent wanted an iPad mini. Only 29 percent expressed a preference for a non-iPad tablet.
“With kids 3 to 10 being the largest growing segment of tablet users,” said Fisher-Price marketing associate, Amber Pietrobono, “we are monitoring it (Android), but right now we are focusing primarily on iOS.”
In addition to Barbie and Fisher Price, there were a ton of other toys and vendors who had iPad toys to show. The iDollhouse and iFirehouse use the iPad as a back wall to the toy itself, virtually opening up the walls of the toys to create a playhouse experience. Nerf is even getting into the action with the Nerf N-Sports Cyberhoop, which pairs the iPad with the basketball hoop that clips on the back of your kids’ door. Make a basket and the iPad will track your score.