I had the opportunity to test out my Jedi skills in the Lenovo booth at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas. Check out the video!
THE 2018 KAPI AWARD WINNERS ARE:
Selected each year, from hundreds of entries and new Tech products, designed for kids, ages birth to 14 years. The esteemed international judges review and debate the best of the best across multiple categories. This year’s winners include new-comers and veterans. See the list below and go to www.kapiawards.com for photos and more information, on each product.
- Best App (Younger Children) Sago Mini World, Sago Mini It took a small Canadian team of designers, many of them parents themselves, to create this safe, vibrant home for the very first tech users. The unique subscription model is commercial free, and packed with updated things to discover.
- Best App (Older Children) Messenger Kids, Facebook Many have tried but few have succeeded to fulfill a family’s desire to let their young children have access to messaging. After copious research and careful attention to privacy and permission, Facebook’s powerful Messenger Kids will open a much-needed line of communication between children and parents. We applaud this type of leadership.
- Best Peripheral Kidizoom Smartwatch DX2, VTech Our judges agreed: the Kidizoom 2017 smartwatch bests the competition in the kid’s wearable category. There’s no GPS for tracking, but the two cameras, color touch screen, motion/step counter and suite of games make this affordable peripheral an ideal first watch for any child. And it tells time.
- Best Content Distribution WOW in the World Podcast for Kids by Tinkercast on NPR “Where doe an astronaut poop?” NPR’s Guy Raz and Mindy Thomas have the answer to this, and many other important questions in this podcast specifically designed to delight kids (and their parents).
- Best AR/VR Application Merge Cube, Merge VR VR and AR apps and toys were easy to find this year. Tools like Apple’s AR kit have created an endless stream of exciting new kids’ products. Merge VR rises to the top by giving children a concrete prop that they can hold in their hands. We’ve seen kids lining up to try it out.
- Best Maker Product Circuit Cubes, Tenka Labs Simplistic fun that turns a consumer into a creator right out of the box. Unlike the other maker kits that were released this year, Circuit Cubes is designed to play well with other brands of toys, from stuffed animals to Tinker Toys to LEGOs.
- Most Creative Beasts of Balance, Sensible Object Jurors loved this clever balancing act (literally) between physical, stackable building parts and AR. Warning — this game can get addicting.
- Award for Innovation Lenovo Star Wars Jedi Challenge, Lenovo OK, let’s admit it. We all want to have our own lightsaber. Lenovo has created a combination headset, app, beacon and light saber that comes close to pulling you right into your own battle.
- Best Physical/Digital Merger LEGO Boost, LEGO Build one of five variations of a robot (or concoct your own) with this LEGOs kit, program it using a simple block-oriented language, and then enjoy your play session with your new interactive creation. This clever leveraging of the LEGO brand offers kids a seamless way to code, build and play.
- Best Thing that Flies Aura Drone with Glove Controller, KD Group We love it when a toy makes feel like you have magical powers. This drone comes with a glove that turns your hand into a motion controller. There are even haptic features so you can feel the power.
- Emerging Pioneer Vikas Gupta, Wonder Workshop Vikas Gupta had a perfectly lovely life as the Head of Consumer Payments at Google, but his vision of creating playmate robots that would teach kids how to code was his passion. With Dot and Dash, a robotic duo, and the new Cue, that has emotional intelligence and personality, he’s taught countless kids about the joys of coding.
Honorable Mentions go to Elfkin for creating a personal robot that includes a voice-activated messaging system that’s safe for young children and Dynepic for iOkids, a woman, and veteran owned company, creating an aggregated safe entertainment environment for kids.
Reyne Rice, Judge & Presenter at CES 2018: Kids at Play Innovations (KAPI) Awards: January 10th, 2018. Las Vegas, Nevada
What are the KAPi Awards? The 9th Annual KAPi (Kids at Play Interactive) Awards celebrates excellence in children’s media, presenting awards to some of the most deserving people and products in the kids’ tech industry. The KAPi prize identifies children’s technology products that raise the bar for innovation and excellence during the past 12 months.
Who selects the winners? Our panel of distinguished judges, representing all facets of the kids’ media business, engage in a series of conversations via phone and email to determine what the characteristics of good kids’ digital play should be and which nominated products are most deserving. http://kapiawards.com/faq-2/
Additional inquiries should be sent to:
Tonda Bunge Sellers, Producer
The latest and greatest innovations rocked the tech world at the annual Consumer Electronics Show, held in Las Vegas from Jan. 6-9. Trade guests viewed the latest virtual reality headsets; flew unmanned systems and drones; test-drove the newest automotive vehicles with built-in enhanced entertainment and digital connectivity for kids and families; and marveled at the enhanced 4-D TV and home entertainment systems. Hands-on experiences and product testing dominated the crowded show floor as global exhibitors showcased their newest launch products, services, apps, and devices.
The show has expanded to include the technology services, software, apps, developments, and alliances that will continue to improve lives, solve problems, and delight gadget lovers across the globe. This expanded charter has prompted the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) change its name to the Consumer Technology Association (CTA).
With more than 3,600 companies covering more than 2.3 million net square feet of exhibit space, CES 2016 included pavilions focusing on virtual and augmented reality, drones, robotics, automotive, health and fitness tech, 3-D printing, wearables, smart home, and Internet of Things (iOT) smart connected devices. An expanded presence for augmented reality, virtual reality, and gaming revealed the newest wave of immersive media in the new Gaming and Virtual Reality Marketplace. Attendees also gained insights from professionals and experts at the over 200 conference sessions available, throughout the CES 2016.
Entertainment Matters and Digital Entertainment expanded to cover events, exhibitors and conference sessions at the Tech South Aria Resort location, with additional exhibits in Tech East and Tech West. The Eureka Park new start-up area exploded to 500 exhibitors, indicating that an increasing amount of companies are targeting this lucrative and expanding technology arena.
New Toys, Games, and Kids Technology products were introduced at CES 2016, including the following:
Fisher-Price revealed its Think & Learn Code-A-Pillar, the first in a series of products which will be unveiled in 2016, to expose children to the foundational skills of coding, using thinking skills, problem solving, and sequencing.
Lego Education rolled out its enhanced WeDo 2.0 products, based on the Next Generation Science Standards. This program combines LEGO bricks, classroom-friendly software, and standards-based projects, to deliver real-world science projects to elementary classrooms.
Odyssey Toys launched a number of new drones, including the amazing Pocket Drone. This drone flattens to the size of a credit card, with the quad rotors folding neatly inside. Pop it out and within 30 seconds, users can activate their anywhere-anytime drone experience.
WowWee introduced CHiP, a robotic pup, with a follow-me feature, gaming, and tricks, all enhanced by the company’s proprietary BeaconSense technology. In addition, R.E.V. Air takes artificial intelligence to the skies, and the LUMI quadcopter adds new play patterns to drone technology.
Spin Master expanded AirHogs to the next level with augmented reality in the new Air Hogs Connect. This technology will allow frequent enhanced updates and upgrades, adding significant value to the Air Hogs experience.
Moff Bands has now partnered with both PBS and Bandai, offering a variety of new fitness and classic play options to their easy-interface wearable smart band technology. Pacman is now a kid’s gesture-activated video game experience.
Sphero Star Wars BB-8, will now use Force Band wearable technology band to use gesture control to activate the robotic droid.
Numerous new exhibitors from Taiwan, Korea, India and, Europe have added new play patterns and play systems for fitness, drones, programming and coding robots, 3D printing and robotics, and more. As the year unfolds, we will reveal more of this latest technology that spans multiple toy, game, and tech categories.