We seem to write this story every year, but high tech are definitely the two words to watch for at the 2007 American International Toy Fair, which takes place in New York next week.
Attendees are expected to see the usual assortment of dolls, video games, and things with Elmo on them. But electronics and especially new-age tech will be especially popular this year with vendors.
Hasbro, Mattel, and Zizzle will show off guitars that help children learn how to play, using various methods including multicolored lights. Another musical innovation will be a singing Barbie.
Toys associated with Hollywood blockbusters like Transformers and Spider Man 3 are expected to have high-tech elements as well. Hasbro is marketing a Transformers helmet that changes voices.
You can expect to see Cookie Monster and Ernie follow Elmo down the T.M.X. path.
The Internet is likely to be a star as well, with Fisher Price unveiling the Easy Link Internet Launchpad, which provides a gateway onto the Net for parent-approved games but goes no further into cyberspace. So, too, with Hasbro’s Net Jet, which will offer 40 online games free of banners and popups.
And, lest we neglect mobiles, Cartoon Network will be showcasing mini-episodes of a handful of popular shows for download onto a mobile or MP3 player.
We’ll have more to say on this next week.