Whilst Christmas may feel a long way off right now, Argos has already predicted what toys they think will fly off the shelves this year.
A new generation of traditional toys equipped with the latest technology are predicted to appeal to children this Christmas. Research by Argos found that more children spent over 5 hours a week playing with traditional play things (69 per cent) compared to PC’s and consoles (54 per cent). So it is little surprise that the buyers’ top items are dominated by a series of interactive takes on childhood favourites, able to use Apps and tablets to further the play experience.
This being said, less high-tech toys remain equally in demand. Argos buyer, Matt Stent stated: “Whilst there is certainly a move towards technology there is an equal movement towards arts and crafts, as well as traditional toys”. He pointed to the My Monopoly board as an example of a more traditional form of child entertainment that promises to be popular this Christmas; in the last decade Argos have sold 1.2m copies of the nation’s favourite game.
1) My friend Cayla (£59.99)
The doll uses the internet through an app to answer any question (not counting profanities) posed to her. When not connected to the net she is able to answer simple questions about herself.
2) Xeno (£59.99)
A more gruesome version of the interactive toy, Xeno is a baby monster who can respond to touch, play games and demonstrate expression through his LED eyes.
3) Leap Band (£29.99)
This child friendly band encourages children to exercise by tracking their movement and unlocking rewards when a certain level of energy spent has been achieved. Each band also has a customised pet which children are able to play and interact with.
4) My Monopoly (£21.99)
My Monopoly says it presents a new, more personal version of the childhood game as owners can make the board their own by allocating family dates and pictures to different places on the board
5) Cra-Z-Loom Bracelet Maker (£14)
The rubber band uses a jewellery maker that allows children to create their own accessories.
Gadgets and Gaming
Portable music items are predicted to be big this Christmas. Adam Mumford, Argos assistant buyer, noted that there was “a strong movement away from the traditional docking system” as he stood by Beats latest collection of headphones and speakers. Items that combine both music and fashion are expected to be particularly in demand.
The family gaming experience also seems to be something companies are keen to tap into. With nearly a million PS4 users in the UK, PlayStation have introduced more apps and gadgets intended to bring the console further into the mainstream. Alternatively Hasbro are hoping their new Nerf range will inspire play across different age groups.
1) The new selection of Beats: Beats Solo 2 (£170), Beats XL Pill (£250)
The Beats Pills speakers have the ability to produce louder sound quality when one Pill is pared with another. This means that Beat are now able to target groups of people, rather than just individuals. It also claims the new design will be “sturdier” than previous models.
2) Lego Batman 3 (TBA)
With over 1.6m units of Lego gaming sold last year the franchise is one of the best selling in the whole industry. Lego hope to bring the family closer together with the introduction of split screen gaming which allows for different skills sets.
3) PlayStation TV (£84.99)
Another appeal to the family market, the PlayStation TV allows PS4 and PS owners to continue their game should they have to leave the current TV they are using. This means that in a family home where a certain TV may be more in demand than another, gamers can continue elsewhere.
4) PlayStation Singstar App, PS3 (£19.99)
The app is able to turn any smart device into a functioning microphone and claims it is big on interactivity. With the option to upload the best bits to Facebook and Twitter there is no doubt that PlayStation are hoping to tap into the social media market.
5) Hasbro Nerf Range (£29.99 - £89.99)
The Nerf Demolisher, armed with the ability to fire both bullets and grenades is designed for ages 8-18. Hasbro said they are not primarily appealing to the children’s market with the range.