I’m always a little disconcerted seeing kids in Vegas, but kid tech I can get behind. Yesterday in the Sands there was a whole section dedicated to making money off the under-10 population. Mattel’s set-up included everything from custom Barbie nail decals, to virtual tweener worlds, to mind control games complete with pulse-sensing electrodes. Really.
Of the products I could see my three-year-old actually using, my favorite was something called Kidthing. Simple in concept, Kidthing is a downloadable browser front that offers tons of free content and games as well as a storefront to buy extra stuff. I’m not particularly concerned about my daughter surfing the Web yet, but having an app that consolidates kid entertainment on the computer is extremely valuable, especially when the company behind it has partners like Dr. Seuss. Kidthing also just launched an alliance with the National Education Association and has a project underway called Dear Mr. President to collect kids’ letters to the White House chief. I can just imagine the requests: Dear Mr. President, please bring me world peace and a princess kitchen. Cuteness factor=huge.
The kid tech market is set for an explosion now that so many folks have Internet at home. Economic collapse? No matter. Parents will always pay money to help keep their kids productively entertained.