Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Mattel Fijit Friends Newbies {Review}

Last summer my daughters, their friends, and I were introduced to an innovative, unique toy that not only helped them express their creativity and love of music and dancing, but it also became a cherished little pal: Fijit Friends.

These electronic, squishy, robotic little buddies can talk, dance, and laugh right along with us, so it hasn't been a surprise for me that the girls have returned to them time and time again to play, sing, groove, cuddle and more. They're just that cute and fun!

Fijit Friends

Seeing how much my girls have enjoyed their Fijit Friends, it made sense hearing that this past holiday season found Fijit Friends on the top of toy wish lists and under nearly a million trees. After having such a record-breaking season of sales, how could Mattel take these cute pals even further?

With the introduction of an adorable pint-sized singing companion in Fijit Friends Newbies.

Fijit Friends Newbies

Giving kids the opportunity to nurture one of the eight, distinct characters, Fijit Friends Newbies are new miniature Fijit pets that love to sing, hum, make sounds and perform their own unique song. Instead of actually talking and interacting like the Fijit Friends, the Newbies are controlled with a simple touch or squeeze to put on cute little performances.

Speaking of cute, when the Powder Pink Kenzie and Ice Blue Kira Newbies arrived, there were plenty of oohs, aahs, and awws before they were even out of the box.

Fijit Friends Newbies

Although both of our Newbies' faces had somehow been scratched in the delivery process, that didn't stop us from pulling them out of the packaging and commenting on how small and sweet they look.

Fijit Friends Newbies review

Right away we realized that there wasn't just one location to press to bring the Newbies to life, but in fact many! The girls immediately began pressing the Nurture Buttons on their foreheads and paws, on the flower Duet Button on their bellybutton, and squeezing each side (which causes the ears to raise up) for a variety of sounds and music that delighted and amazed them.

Fijit Friends Newbies

The girls loved how easy it was to pet and interact with each of their Newbies and grinned over hearing the purrs, giggles, coos and more that their little pets produced. We even found that their singing actually began to improve the more that we played and nurtured them, so that proved to be even more positive reinforcement to continue to play!

We found it an especially fun treat that by placing the Newbies together so that their Duet Buttons touched, they actually sang a duet — each singing different parts of the same song! How cute!

Fijit Friends Newbies duet

Aside from the Fijit Friends themselves, I can't remember a toy that has kept my girls up on their feet dancing as much as the Fijit Friends Newbies. Each burst of music or song that is sung is pretty short, but that doesn't stop my kids from shaking and jumping and grooving to the beat... only to stop to press on their Newbie again to start it back up for more.

Fijit Friends dancing
Try not to be jealous of their slick moves
As we had heard the the Fijit Friends Newbies have the ability to not only make kids dance, but to also make the original Fijit Friends dance through their Sonic Chirp technology, we were eager to introduce our Fijit family and see what happened.

While at first we weren't exactly sure what we needed to do to active the special audio coding embedded in the Newbies that would trigger our Fijit Friends' programmed dancing moves, a little trial and error (and me getting smart and reading the instructions) resulted in discovering how to put the Fijit Friend and the Newbie into Chirp Mode so that they would be able to react and respond.

When the Fijit Friend started getting into a lot of fun shaking and jiving to the Newbie's music, we had a hard time trying to stop giggling!

Fijit Friends and Newbies

In the same way that my kids loved the squishy, rubbery bodies of their Fijit Friends, they can't seem to get enough of holding, carrying and loving their Newbies. It's not uncommon to hear a variety of hums and squeaks combined with giggles and music... and when I find the culprits sitting on the couch, they're always all smiles!

Fijit Friends Newbies

Available directly from Mattel (or on Amazon), Fijit Friends Newbies retail for $17.99 each and are a fun and unique way to interact with a cute pet.

These colorful and innovative additions to the Fijit Friends line can provide an entertaining experience for kids of all ages (although they are recommended for ages 6+) and while they don't have as many features as the original collection, they are a great option if you are looking for a more affordable Fijit or as an addition for a child who is already a big fan.

I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour campaign by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Mattel and received two Fijit Friends Newbies to facilitate my review.


Amy V said...

i've never heard of these but they look like they'd be a lot of fun! i think my nieces would love them!

AlexisGrau said...

These remind me of the Tamagatchi toys that I played with when I was little!

alexisgrau1 [at] yahoo [dot] com

Kate @ The Shopping Mama said...

Those are so cute! My daughter would definitely get a kick out them.

bromleylisa27 said...

My daughter would luv these!