playDXTR is a new smart toy that monitors child development


Building blocks for kids just got cooler and smarter.


If there is one toy that has managed to be a staple in every kid’s play area, it’s probably building blocks. But in today’s screen-based world, digital devices lately have been the focus of playtime. Now, the analog building block just got a tech upgrade for the 21st century kid. PlayDXTR is a set of building blocks with embedded technology that can observe, monitor and quantify a child’s cognitive development.

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PlayDXTR comes from the playful imaginations of Rene Lund, Mikkel Moos, Frederik Nielsen and Kenneth Madsen at DXTR Tactile. Their goal is to “bring toys toward the future by leveraging modern technology with good old-fashioned play,” and their latest product does just that.

27 different smart and magnetic blocks, called Kubits, make up playDXTR. With its built-in sensors, each Kubit can communicate with other Kubits by registering motion, direction, orientation and relative connections. An accompanying mobile app prompts children to construct things and arrange blocks in certain ways, which creates a stimulating and imaginative play experience for kids.

As the child plays with the blocks, the movement is monitored and analyzed, subsequently delivering data to parents about their child’s developmental progress. To name a few, parents will receive real-time information on their child’s critical thinking, problem solving, planning, memory, motor skills and attention span. Additionally, playDXTR offers insight to games and activities that can strengthen certain skills. What’s great about playDXTR is that it’s a fun toy for kids and a useful tool for adults.

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Inside the waterproof, shock-resistant casing of the Kubit are RBG LEDs, a Bluetooth Low Energy module and motion sensors. Funds from the project will help the DXTR team assemble the next generation of hardware, which will include a 32-bit microprocessor, a low-power IMU and a rechargeable lithium polymer battery.

Intrigued? Head over to playDXTR’s Kickstarter campaign, where the DXTR Labs crew is seeking $50,000. Delivery is slated for April 2016.

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