Must Have Kids Tech Gadget for Christmas? It's a Book.
Christmas this year will likely be filled with all manner of mini tablets and computerized toys landing in the hands of kids, with the Nexus 7, newly discounted Kindle Fire, and iPad Mini hitting stores everywhere. Not to mention the plethora of LeapPad 2's, Wii U's, VTeach InnoPads and the assault of militaristic remote controlled flying thingies.
Walmart and ToysRUs have put out their top lists of toys kids have said they gotta have. And with all of the tech on kids' Santa lists, the last thing you might think of as "the hot toy" this year would be a book, right? If Sony has its way, you may be right, and wrong...
Sony Entertainment has just come out with the Wonderbook, an augmented reality story-telling interface that works with their PlayStation 3 Move system. It looks like a plain book with strange boxy symbols, and has flippable pages, but sit your kid down in front of a television set with the Move system plugged in, and Wonderbook's on-screen twin comes to life.
Simply load a Wonderbook title, hand your kid the Move wand and Wonderbook, and sit them, cross-legged, in front of the television. The Move system's Eye camera shows your child on the television screen, very much like they were sitting in front of a mirror. The magic of the system happens as the handheld Wonderbook is replaced on-screen with a full-sized, color replica of the virtual book loaded on the PlayStation 3. In the image below, the Wonderbook system is being propped up, and the user sees himself holding an augmented reality title. In this case, you're looking at the Book of Spells, which was created along with J. K. Rowling, and is based on one of the books featured in the Harry Potter series' Hogwarts library.Continued on the next page