Dancing Robots, Flying Fish—Here Come the Hot Holiday Toys
But back to the musical theme. For this holiday season there will be no shortage of microphones equipped to "autotune," or correct a singer's voice as he or she croons. The retailers are putting their bets on Jakks Pacific's I am T-Pain microphone, but there are others in the category, including one from WowWee under its Paper Jamz brand that didn't make the retailer's list.
(The I am T-Pain microphone made the Kmart "Fab 15" and was included in the longer Toys 'R Us list.)
Then there are Wow! Stuff's My Keepon and Radica's Fijit, either of which could come from nowhere and be a must-have toy of the season.
Neither is in itself musical, but both have the ability to interact with the sounds around them — including music. They both coo and move around, and apparently can be irresistible to kids and adults alike.
My Keepon, which looks like two tennis balls squashed together, has already developed a strong You Tube following — proof enough there's some hit potential there.
The toy was originally created as a therapeutic tool for autistic children who can be overwhelmed by face-to-face interactions. In fact, a portion of the sales of My Keepon, which is only sold at Toys 'R Us stores and was included on its "Fabulous 15" list, will be donated to autism research.
Fijit is similar to My Keepon, but it is much more stylized. It has a soft, pliable "skin" in pastel shades, antenna and a smiling face. In short, it looks like it would be perfectly at home in a tween girl's bedroom. Fijit talks dances, laughs and moves around. It can understand and respond to more than 30 commands and has more than 150 built-in phrases and jokes.
Both Kmart and Toys 'R Us had Fijit among their top toys.
Leapfrog's LeapPad Explorer Learning Tablet also made both retailers' lists. This is a fresh way for kids to interact with Leapfrog's learning software, and parents may be able to keep their young kids from playing with their iPads, at least for a little while.
The complete list of Toys 'R Us's Fabulous 15 toys:
1. Air Hogs Hyper Actives from Spin Master
2. Air Swimmers eXtreme from Animal Planet
3. Lalaloopsy Silly Hair dolls from MGA Entertainment
4. LeapPad Explorer from LeapFrog
5. Monster High Fearleading 3-Pack from Mattel
6. Moshi Monsters Moshling 3-Pack Mini-Figures from Spin Master
7. My Keepon from WOW! Stuff
8. NERF Vortex Vigilon from Hasbro
9. Ninjago Lightning Dragon Battle from LEGO Systems
10. Poppin’ Park Elefun Busy Ball Popper from Playskool
11. Power Wheels Dune Racer from Fisher-Price
12. Radica Fijit Friends from Mattel
13. Sesame Street Let’s Rock! Elmo from Hasbro
14. Skylanders: Spyro’s Adventure from Activision
15. The Trash Pack Garbage Truck from Moose Toys
1. Let's Rock Elmo
3. I am T-Pain Microphone
4. Barbie Designable Hair Extensions and Doll
5. Lite Sprites Lite Wand, Prisma and Pod
6. Redakai Championship Battle Tin
7. FurReal Friends Cookie My Playful Pup
8. Nerf Vortex Nitron Blaster
9. Mini Lalaloopsy Treehouse Playset
10. WWE Colossal Crashdown Arena
11. Transformers Mechtech Ultimate Optimus Prime
12. LeapPad Explorer Learning Tablet
13. Lazer Stunt Chaser R/C Vehicle
14. Simon Flash
15. Dora Fiesta Favorites Kitchen