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Furby: The Closest Toy to Ted

Before we talk about Furby, how many of you remember “Ted” from the movie? The movie tells the story of an 8 yr old boy, who wishes for his teddy bear to come to life only to wake up the next morning to find out his wish has been granted! It continues to talk about how they become best of friends and sticks by each other.

Ted, 2012

Who hasn’t dreamt of having their own Ted, as a friend or partner in crime? Well, meet Furby, your very own intelligent, adaptable, furry friend. It took over nine months to develop and program the toy and the sales boomed as soon as it was launched. Being the first attempt to sell a domestically-aimed robot, Furby became a “must-have” toy for children aged 6 yrs and above.

Furby Toy
Furby Toy

How did I come across Furby, you ask? Well, it was a few years ago when my cousin and niece decided to pay me a visit. It was my niece who introduced me to this creature. So awed by this intelligent toy, I started playing around.

The working seems pretty simple. You plug in batteries and your Furby is “up”. Since it an intelligent, adaptable toy, it powers up with pre-programmed data and adapts its personality according to the training data received. That is, the toy responds in a manner exactly like you talk. It collects data continuously to develop its “personality” to respond efficiently, can pick up and respond to emotions, commands and environmental variables. It is also connected to an app which allows sufficient control over the toy.

Attributes

So, why am I showing interest here?

We all know how children today spend their leisure time and how their idea of “fun” has changed. From playgrounds to iPads, there is little skill and personality development involved. However, this toy can improve that. Here’s why:

  • It mirrors your behavior. If you show a negative emotion, the toy will retaliate with the same, thereby, depicting the importance of being kind and polite.
  • Since it is intelligent, you cannot predict every response your behavior, which will keep your child engaged and distract away from the constant glare of tablets.
  • Intrigues your child and enables your child to ask questions about the toy’s behavior, thus, encouraging his logical and analytical skills.
  • Your child has his own friend right next to him, to play with and provide support eventually.

A brilliant initiative, the toy not only allows your children to have fun but also educational. Since the first variant, several other variants of Furby family have come out; Furby Connect, Furby Crystal Boom, and Furby Furblings. They differ in size, shape, and a few functionalities but intend the same for your child. Have a look at how Furby works for yourself.

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