Over the holiday season I’ll be on TV and Radio talking about some of my favorite holiday picks. Here’s what I’ll be showing off:
Cozmo from Anki ($179) is real life robot packed with artificial intelligence and an adorable personality. The little ‘droid is packed with sensors and camera that help him navigate the world. When he looks at you with his expressive blue eyes and says your name, you’ll melt. Like a happy puppy he loves to play games, but the real magic is in the emotional bond that you and Cozmo will build.
Skylanders Imaginators ($59.99 for start set) is a great game to play with your kids. You power up the video game with toy action figures that make for creative play, on-screen and off. New this year, kids can design their own characters: how they look, sound, and play. Parents love this because it brings creativity to gaming. And, get this: you’ll be able to order your child’s creations on t-shirts and as 3d fully-playable figures.
Portal ($199) is the fastest wireless router I’ve tested; its also the slickest looking. All 9 antennas are hidden so it looks great in any room. One of the reasons your internet may be so slow is that you and your neighbors are fighting for the same wireless pathways, so it can be like your data is stuck in traffic. Portal uses frequencies none of your neighbors are on, so your streaming movies and music are delivered blazing fast. I love that you can manage it, including parental controls, from your smartphone. If only it was so easy to control your kids that way!
Wonder Workshop's Dash ($149) and Dot (sold separately or bundled) are programmable smartphone-controlled robots for kids. Start by customizing and driving Dash around the house. The real fun (and learning) begins when kids develop programming skills by gaming with the robots in the free apps. The perfect STEM toy, Dash is a winner of the 2016 Oppenheim Toy Portfolio Platinum Award.
Race into the future with Anki Overdrive ($149) a game that mixes the fun of video games with real-world toys. You control the rechargeable, wireless vehicles with your smartphone, battling up to three opponents, live or AI. The starter set comes with all that is needed to build eight different tracks. Then you can add jumps and supertrucks, like the X-52, that add whole new ways to play.
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