"In 2011, licensed toys represented 26 percent of total industry sales, and with a slate of family-friendly movies hitting the theaters in the coming months, there will be a steady stream of new content tied to entertainment and licensing properties throughout 2012," says Adrienne Appell, in-house trend expert, Toy Industry Association.
The experts found a resurgence of high-end toys as well as an influx of educational toys for tots. Six important trends for this year include toys that work with smart devices and apps; toys that glow in the dark or light up; infant to pre-school toys and games; dynamic toys with multiple play patterns; higher-priced toys; and musical toys.
"Toymakers continue to innovate at the speed of light to keep up with trends in other areas from pop culture to technology because they know that kids want to be a part of the mix and mimic what's happening in the world around them," says Appell. "The toy industry draws upon economic and birth rate data to determine price points and product lines, which accounts for the prevalence this year of big-ticket items and toys for infants and pre-school children."
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