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Hong Kong’s annual Toys and Games Fair took center stage this week.
The Hong Kong Toys & Games Fair is Asia’s largest toy industry event and buyers discover the top toy trends and hot toys for 2016. Big hits are expected from toys incorporating virtual and augmented reality. Interestingly, mind control toys are expected to be a big hit for Christmas.
Industry experts are expecting a more profitable year with the prospect of bigger families in China potentially boosting sales. Since China is transitioning to a two child policy, Hong Kong Trade Development Council is bullish about the prospects of the Chinese market. According to reports, in 2015 compared to 2014, there has been an 80% increase in baby product exports from Hong Kong to mainland China. Chinese parents are expected to spend 75 billion yuan ($11.4 billion) extra on their newborns. Some exhibitors aren’t banking on a baby boom to boost sales.
Drones, virtual reality, and app-enabled smart toys dominated the show floor.
Last year drones started building traction and gaining popularity. As you can expect, there were several manufacturers displaying drones at the fair. In fact, there were no fewer than 40 manufacturers featuring the latest and greatest drone technology. One of the best drones from CES was the Yuneec Typhoon H drone. This is the closest competitor to DJI, the dominant consumer drone maker.
This year appears to be a standout year for virtual reality and augmented reality toys. The fair featured drones that provide a first-person flying experience through VR headsets.
App-Enabled Smart Toys
More manufacturers at this year’s show are embracing mobile apps and integrating them as part of their new products. At least 41 exhibitors displayed some sort of mobile app. One highlight at the fair included an app allowing Batman fans to train for battle as their favorite character by simply using their minds. Brain wave control is a killer new feature of the upcoming game Batman vs Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Highlights of the Fair
- Yuneec Typhoon H Drone – Named best drone of CES by PC Magazine and the first real competitor to DJI.
- TriceRatops DinoSaur – An archeology kit great for learning about dinosaurs. Players chip away at the plaster block to reveal a scaled-down replica of the ancient beast’s skeleton. Then you can use the companion mobile app to view a cool 3D animation of the dinosaur whose bones you just excavated.
- Batwing Scale Model – Collectible scale levitating model based on the Batman license. The model is suspended in the air by magnetic levitation.
- PhotoShop Color Picker – Think Photoshop’s color picker but with real-world application. This color picking stylus is one of many app-enabled educational toys showcased at the toy fair.
- Freeman – This hoverboard from E-Supply was named the best outdoor and sporting toy at the fair.
- Dance Mats – If you are seeking old-school entertainment without apps or smartphones, these dance mats with cool designs and characters will satisfy most. There are dance mats with musical piano keys.
- Traditional Play Kits – Play kits like the Superior Cleaner (hose vacuum cleaner), play iron, and Sewing Machine are still in demand.
- Traditional Wooden Construction Brick Sets – These traditional wooden construction brick sets have maintained their popularity in the Asian market.