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By Kids Electronic Toy Manufacturer Cheertone | 12 April 2024 | 1 Comments

The Future of Kid Smart Toys | 2023-2031

A teddy bear combined with ChatGPT tells a story to a childFor those who have watched the animated movie "Big Hero 6," they must envy the protagonist's ability to receive warm hugs from his robot friend "Baymax" in times of difficulty and loneliness, and imagine when they can have a toy robot friend like "Baymax."

With the rapid development of technology and the widespread adoption of mobile internet, consumers have higher demands for toy products. Nowadays, toys are no longer confined to traditional forms. Smart electronic toys have become the most eye-catching segment. Firstly, STEAM educational assembly toys are widely popular. Secondly, smart electronic toys are rising and gradually replacing traditional toys that lack innovation.

So, among the diverse range of toy products, which ones are truly considered smart? How do they interact with children? And where is the direction of the smart toy industry?

This article will attempt to answer the following three questions:
1.Why are smart toys considered the compass of the toy industry's future?
2.What are the environmental driving factors behind the trend of smart toys?
3.What value does smart toys bring to children after being equipped with intelligence?

1.Kid Smart Toys: The Leader of Toy Industry
According to a research report by Yuanzhe Consulting, the global smart toys market reached 10.8 billion USD in 2021 and is projected to reach 41.423 billion USD by 2031, with a compound annual growth rate of 14.4% from 2021 to 2031. In the next decade, advancements in technology and increased awareness will drive the growth of the smart toy industry.

As per data from the Japan Toy Association's official website, the domestic toy market in Japan for the fiscal year 2022 amounted to 952.5 billion Japanese Yen, showing a growth of 6.7% compared to the previous year, with high-tech trend toys growing by 16.3%.

International toy giant Vtech announced in September 2020 an expansion of its Go-Go Smart Wheels product line, introducing new interactive STEM toys for infants and toddlers. These toys help enhance children's imagination, promote joy, and fun. In June of this year, Hasbro announced a new generation of cute, cool and funny interactive smart toy Furby, which boasts 5 voice-activated modes and over 600 different reactions to explore. It responds to hugs, pats, tickles, shakes, and feeding. Children can take care of Phoebe and accessorize it. This product excels in interaction and has strong interactivity.

China not only holds the title of the world's largest toy manufacturer but also the largest toy exporter, earning the nickname "World's Toy Factory." According to industry statistics, approximately 75% of toys globally are produced in China, primarily concentrated in coastal regions like Guangdong, Zhejiang, Jiangsu, and Shanghai. Guangdong is the largest toy production and export base in China. A children's smart toy smartphone introduced by Shenzhen Cheertone Technology Co., Ltd. comes with an interactive pet companion named Gubi. By clicking on different parts of Gubi's body, children can trigger various expressions and states, making it highly interactive and greatly loved by kids.

The combination of "toys" and "intelligence" is becoming a major trend in the toy industry.
The reason why smart toys are riding this trend is due to their intelligence and interactivity. Smart toys not only enhance children's social skills, creativity, and learning ability but also allow for "emotional" communication with them. They cultivate good habits in children, facilitating learning and experiencing life in a delightful manner, truly achieving the goal of combining education with entertainment. Additionally, smart toys help children develop and reflect on their communication styles, enabling parents to discover their children's strengths and weaknesses.

Chinese toy industry analysts believe that the rapid development of technology has brought limitless convenience to life, as well as more joy. For the toy market, the integration of technology into toy products has further driven the development of the smart interactive toy market. The smartification of toys has become an inevitable trend in the toy industry. As the demand for toy products in households continues to grow, the potential for the future smart interactive toy market is immense.

2.Analysis of Environmental Drivers for the New Trend of Smart Toys
The popularity of smart electronic toys is based on the development of science and technology and changes in people's perceptions. Let's take a look at two driving factors:

The booming promotion of high technology and AI artificial intelligence. Nowadays, artificial intelligence is a hot topic, and various fields are exploring its application to improve efficiency and enhance customer experience. After years of exploration, artificial intelligence is now gradually entering a period of harvest, and we can see it being applied to various industries such as medicine, education, transportation, and consumer goods.

When a new tool is widely applied in various industries, it must be profitable, or there is no motivation for application. To integrate artificial intelligence into physical entities, it first starts with the most profitable areas for penetration and improvement. Therefore, the toy industry is undoubtedly one of the first industries to adopt artificial intelligence, mainly due to two reasons: firstly, the toy industry has a high tolerance for AI applications, and secondly, toys are the easiest entry point for artificial intelligence in the early stages.

The above views are mainly based on the following facts: as early as the late 20th century, smart toys were already targeting the market. For example, in 1998, the first generation of Furby smart toy, named "Furby," became the favorite of children at that time. After its launch, Furby immediately became one of the top 10 toys globally, selling more than 40 million units worldwide. Furby was only 5 inches tall and spoke in its language called "Furbish." Over time, it could "learn" English and Chinese through conversations with its owners. In 1999, Sony also introduced the world's first electronic dog, "Aibo," which had a lifecycle like a living creature, gradually learning to stand, walk, and play pranks in its early life. As it matured, it became a responsible electronic pet dog.
Hasbro Kid Smart Toys Furby in 2023Hasbro Furby Kid Smart Toys
The above examples illustrate that artificial intelligence technology had already been attempted by major toy companies in the toy industry before the advent of the Internet era in China. The reason why smart toys in the late 20th century did not gain market favor was complex. Firstly, any new technology will choose high-tolerance industries for low-cost, small-scale trials before extensive application. Secondly, it was due to expensive prices and toy ideas that exceeded consumers' acceptance and perception at that time. However, today, with the significant decrease in upstream material costs such as chips and sensors, along with the improvement of consumer awareness accompanying technological development, artificial intelligence has entered a period of harvest, and the smart toy industry is now riding the wave.

Changes in the perceptions of toy consumers. A survey conducted by, a market research company in the United States, on consumers in 17 countries and regions globally, showed that global consumer preferences for smart toys are changing. As technology becomes increasingly prevalent in daily life, consumers are seeking toys that combine technology and offer interactive experiences. Many parents find smart toys appealing because they allow children to participate in interactive games and learning.

The post-90s generation is the global main force in childbirth and the new generation of parents. As individuals who grew up with the internet, the post-90s generation tends to favor smart products. They are more receptive to new things and enjoy smart products. Their mainstream thinking is twofold: on one hand, they want to embrace the new changes brought by technology, investing more energy, time, and money in more important things, seeking a faster and more efficient lifestyle; on the other hand, they want their children to adapt quickly to social development and have exposure to smart products.

The Japanese children's toy market is trending towards "big children," but the demand for smart toys among Japanese parents remains steady. This is primarily due to Japan's implementation of the "Guidelines for Learning" in 2020, which clearly stated that programming must become a compulsory subject in Japanese primary schools. For instance, the Japanese STEM toy brand ArTeC is dedicated to developing products in the fields of robotics, engineering experiments, coding, and programming. They offer components for children to assemble robots and use programming thinking through circuit control components to make the toys perform various actions.

According to the "Chinese Parenting Style: 2020 Tmall Parent-child Consumption Report," in 2019, sales of early education and educational toys showed rapid growth, with sales of smart robots increasing by as much as 395%. Many children's electronic toys related to coding experienced a year-on-year sales growth of up to 570% for younger children. The chart below shows the distribution of reasons for Chinese parents purchasing smart toys for their children in a small sample.
Chinese Parenting Style: 2020 Tmall Parent-child Consumption ReportChinese Parenting Style: 2020 Tmall Parent-child Consumption Report
Currently, the United States remains the world's largest toy consumption market, characterized by several key aspects: a large toy market, high consumer spending, a significant import ratio, a strong preference for dynamic toys, increasing popularity of tech-integrated toys, and a surge in foreign retro trends sweeping the toy industry. According to survey data from the American market research company NPD, despite a possible decline in consumer spending intentions during the pandemic years, interest in toys remains high among consumers. American parents primarily consider price, educational value, brand, and safety when purchasing toys. The primary motivation for buying toys for children is to aid learning and enhance imagination, with an overwhelming 86% of parents citing this as a crucial factor. As a result, various types of smart electronic toys that contribute to intellectual development are particularly favored, making up the largest share in the US toy market.

In conclusion, the demand for educational features in smart toys is significant among parents from different countries and family backgrounds. Chinese parents' emphasis on educational value may be related to their aspirations for their children's success and the current examination system. The value of toys is mainly reflected in their entertainment, educational, socialization, and cultural inheritance functions, among others. The fundamental aspect of toys lies in their entertainment value. The users and purchasers of toys are two distinct groups, and thus, toy design needs to cater to their different needs - entertainment and educational value. Products that strike a balance between both aspects will naturally receive enthusiastic market response.

3.Smart Toys' "Ingenious Design"
The global sales channels for smart toys are still primarily offline, including toy specialty stores, baby product stores, bookstores, department stores, etc., accounting for as much as 80%. Online sales only make up 20% of the market, mainly due to the limitation of showcasing smart electronic toy products through images and functionalities without offering children the opportunity for hands-on experiences.

Based in Shenzhen, Guangdong, China, CheerTone is a company specializing in children's smart electronic toys, aiming to enhance children's intelligence and creativity through technological means. Their main products include children's smartwatches, children's cameras, children's learning machines, gaming consoles, etc. With over 15 years of OEM&ODM service experience and factory certifications such as ISO BSCI, ICIT, and product certifications like CE, EN71, RoHS, their products enjoy great sales in over 30 countries and regions worldwide, establishing strong cooperative relationships with renowned brands such as Walmart, Aldi, Samjin, and others.

In the design of smart toys, the embodiment of intelligence crucially relies on human-machine interaction mechanisms. Interaction modes and depth are key indicators of "intelligence." Taking smart voice technology as an example, once applied to children's toy products, the boundaries of this product, the extent to which it understands children's actions and intentions, and the breadth of satisfying children's desires for results become focal points of attention.

Children want to experience different roles through toys or see characters in stories that closely resemble real life. Therefore, if smart toys can reflect contemporary social life and provide parents and children with a more diverse range of characters and scenarios, it will be very considerate. The recently launched product by CheerTone for 2023 is a kids laptop learning machine CT-900 with a 3.5-inch color screen. It comes with 60 programs, including stories, music, math calculations, and puzzle games, among others. The standard language is English, but customization for other languages is also available. It is equipped with a stylus pen, a colored drawing board, and a mouse. One of its most important features is that children can simulate sending emails while playing. This exercise of social skills is the highest level of functionality for smart toys. In the smart toy industry, design determines quality and experience, which also indirectly proves that high added value in the toy industry lies in the design and development stage.
Best Kids Learning Laptop Computer Toys in 2023 CT-900Kids Learning Computer Toys Best Gift For Children CT-900Kids Electronic Toys Manufacturer in China Cheertone Technology

With the "Generation Z" group becoming the new generation of parents, there is a stronger willingness to invest in education, placing greater emphasis on combining education with entertainment and focusing on learning interests and hands-on abilities for their children.

No market, no matter how powerful, can be completely self-sufficient in all aspects. The key lies in mutual trade, cooperation, and win-win strategies. For foreign toy buyers, choosing a suitable trading partner company is crucial. CheerTone, with its various innovative dimensions, closely follows market demands in product innovation, design, and adaptation to the educational habits of the new generation of parents. It meets the dual demands of entertainment and intelligence in children's toys and can professionally customize kids smart electronic toys according to customer needs.

In the future of children's smart electronic toys, differentiation through unique and creative ideas will open up new paths in this highly concentrated field. CheerTone will continue to bring more innovative and exciting experiences to anticipate.

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