AppToyz, the firm behind the AppBlaster augmented reality iPhone gun which proved popular last year, has revealed its smartphone-based offerings for this Christmas season. New toys include a fishing game which mounts an iPhone onto a toy fishing rod, a portable Karaoke machine, a quiz game with buzzer buttons, and an updated AppBlaster v2.0.
There's no shortage of toy add-ons for smartphones and tablets vying for a place on your smartphone or tablet on Christmas morning. There's the Mattel Apptivity Play offerings including Hot Wheels cars and physical Angry Birds characters, and iTikes toys such as a musical keyboard, map, microscope, and art canvas. Meanwhile, Bandai want your iPhone to be a toy pet dog, and Griffin Technology think it should be a cuddly creature.
The latest selections from AppToyz are all physical attachments for smartphones or tablets which, it's claimed, add an old school element of play to modern technology. Each is designed to work with apps which can be downloaded for free and batteries are not required for the majority.
The updated AppBlaster hasn't just changed color, the augmented reality blaster has also been redesigned to fit a variety of devices. That means you can now happily rid your real-life surroundings of alien swarms – using the Alien Attack AR – whether you're packing an iPhone, iPod touch or an Android phone.
Once a device is docked and the app running, it becomes a high tech sight showing your surroundings via the camera, and an invasion of virtual aliens which appear from the walls, ceiling and floor. Pulling the triggers causes pads to make contact with the smartphone screen to fire a laser or missiles. AppBlaster v2.0 is also compatible with eight other games that have been optimized for it including Tin Can Alley, Marine Sharpshooter, Duck Hunter and Pull.
Aiming to recreate the experience of fishing, but without the early mornings and sitting at the side of a river, AppFishing is a 40-cm (15.8-inch) toy fishing rod with a mount for an iPhone, iPod touch or Android phone running the corresponding game.
After downloading the AppFishing app from the Apple AppStore or Google Play, the rod can then be used to play with life-like casting, while the gyro in the smartphone is said to make you feel as though you’re in a little boat. The reel and casting button are connected to the touchscreen through trigger touch-pad technology.
Transforming a smartphone or tablet into a karaoke machine, the physical AppSing device consists of two parts, a microphone with a universal cage to hold a smartphone, and a speaker unit which can double-up as a stand for a tablet computer.
Once any of the compatible karaoke apps are downloaded, you do as expected and belt out your favorite songs into the mic, with lyrics appearing inches from your face if using the microphone phone-holder, or above the stereo speakers if using it as a tablet stand.
Turning an iPad or Android tablet into a portable quiz show, AppQuiz adds four big TV game show-style buttons under the screen of your device. The app, as you may have guessed, then takes the form of an interactive quiz, with players hitting their buttons – which use trigger to touch technology to press the screen – before pressing the screen to answer.
In addition to thousands of different questions, a number of mini games, new content and quiz packs can be added. As the four big red buttons suggest, the game allows for up to four players.
All of the toys are available now. The AppBlaster v2, AppFishing and AppQuiz each sell for £30 (around US$48) while AppSing will set you back £40 (around $65).