Amazing Alex (99 cents) for iPhone or Android is a physics game where you're challenged to create chain reactions with objects to complete objectives. Our hero, Amazing Alex, is a kid who's stuck cleaning his room and tries to get creative with organizing his belongings by building Rube Goldburg-like devices.… Read more
Holiday shopping season is coming. Oh yes, it is. And the new Furby is waiting. Hasbro has redesigned the Furby and is releasing it this fall, complete with complementary iOS apps and a re-engineered body.
I don't choose to believe that the Furby is officially a retro toy. That ages me too much. The original Furby came out in 1998, which somehow adds up to 14 years ago. I missed Furbymania completely (I was in grad school), but for both newcomers and the Furby-nostalgic Hasbro is readying its first new Furby product since the days of Y2K. The name? It's still just Furby. And one has arrived at our CNET offices.… Read more
TOKYO--If you're in love with your iPhone, Bandai's Smartpet lets it really walk all over you.
The pooch can walk around (top speed: three steps per second), sit up, and wag its tail. The app shows a variety of cartoon faces on the touch screen, or whatever face you want to give it. … Read more
Take a look at this eccentric array of action figure lamps by U.K. firm Evil Robot Designs. They feature painted pint-size superstars from geeky films, video games, and comic books.
Each of the six lamps in the collection has an ear-catching name like Alien Nation and Forbidden Planet. It would take paragraphs to list all the characters integrated into the 2-foot fixtures, but some notables (not mentioned in the photo captions) include Mysterio; Green Goblin; evil xenomorphs from the "Alien" movie series; He-Man; Bunnygirl "Suzumiya Haruhi"; and many more. … Read more
Do children still enthuse about cars? Toyota is hoping they'll become future buyers with the Camatte, an EV concept showing this week in Tokyo.
Named for the Japanese verb kamau (to care), the Camatte is designed to prompt tykes to care about car ownership. The seats and pedals can be adjusted so that kids can drive while an adult in the back seat helps with steering.
It won't be road-worthy, however, and is designed for use on go-kart tracks and other private facilities, with a top speed of 25 mph. Can that really rev kids up? … Read more
PayPal announced today it is partnering with 15 more U.S. retailers aiming to get shoppers to use PayPal's offline payment system.
"Consumers are relying on technology now more than ever to simplify their lives when it comes to shopping and paying, and retailers must adapt to this shift or risk becoming irrelevant," PayPal President David Marcus wrote in a blog post. "Innovative retailers everywhere are looking for ways to improve the shopping experience, extend loyalty programs and better engage with their customers."
The new retailers include, Abercrombie & Fitch, Advance Auto Parts, Aeropostale, American … Read more
It's the tallest Lego tower ever, soaring to the heavens at more than 104 feet and setting a geek world record last week.
The Lego World Tower brought joy to the hearts of Koreans last week when it went up in Seoul's Olympic Stadium.
At 104 feet and 7 inches, it edged out a similar tower erected in France last year at 103 feet. It took some 4,000 Korean kids five days and half a million bricks to put it together. … Read more
CAMBRIDGE, Mass.--While older generations simply had to memorize facts at school, today's children and young adults learn best by playing, often with digital gadgets, according to experts at the Sandbox Summit.
Held at the MIT Media Lab, the conference brings together educators and technologists seeking ways to better reach Generations Y and Z--groups ranging from toddlers to 20 somethings--and equip them with skills for the digital lifestyle of the 21st century. In additional to making compelling online games and educational content, they are also trying to design toys which bridge offline play with online apps.
New technology, particularly … Read more
When you think of the giant tire manufacturers, names like Goodyear, Firestone, and BFGoodrich probably come to mind. So it might surprise you to learn that the largest maker of tires on the planet is none other than the most famous toy company in the world: Lego.
To be sure, Lego's tires are not all-weather, nor can they go off-road. They also fit in the palm of your hand. But for 50 years, Lego has been churning out its little wheels, millions per year, topping out at an unbelievable 381 million in 2011, the company said.
This tire empire … Read more
For their final episode, the Crave team does... well, exactly what they always do. Donald goes nuts for a free toy adapter that can create an unholy union between Legos and Tinker Toys. Bonnie recounts her dramatic day of technology detox. And in Geek News, Eric gives his 2 cents on "The Hunger Games" movie.