Ex-Apple Employee Wants to Create the Best Toy Blocks Ever
Imagine a child’s building blocks. Now imagine them moving around, lighting up and even interacting with each other, while being controlled by your iPhone. That’s the idea behind ATOMS, a Kickstarter project that launched Monday.
Ex-Apple employee Michael Rosenblatt assembled the Seamless Toy Company from the startup scene in Boulder, Colo. over the past few months. In four weeks, the company has cranked out 13 prototypes of ATOMS, tiny devices that kids of all ages can use to build working interactive toys.
If the idea sounds like Lego Mindstorms, you’re not far off. Rosenblatt, whose day job is at Samsung, says he aims to help kids build toys that actually do things, rather than just sit there.
In one example on its Kickstarter page, ATOMS claims to transform a magic wand: “What good is a magic wand that doesn’t do anything? Not much good, really. Certainly can’t compete in a wizard’s duel. This kit allows you to build an ATOMS magic wand that can turn on your nightlight, move a toy, or close a door with a shake of the wand.”
Each individual ATOM has a specific piece of technology that gives it abilities to become more than just an inanimate object: a motor, accelerometer, battery or even iOS controller (via Bluetooth 4.0), among others.
The idea sounds amazing, even if these “advanced creativity” kind of toys tend to have a limited audience. Rosenblatt says he thinks ATOMS will have some broad appeal, however, since the individual pieces themselves will be fairly simple; they don’t require electronics skills, programming experience or even parental supervision, the project page says.
ATOMS is seeking $100,000 in funding to build its first three sets, with the lowest-priced one aimed to sell for less than $50. But Rosenblatt says he hopes people will see the project’s appeal, and raise 10 times as much.
Will ATOMS succeed? That’s up to you — does it sound like a project you’d fund, or a product you’d buy? Let us know in the comments below.
Image courtesy of Seamless Toy Co.