NEWS$show=/search/label/news

Here's where you'll find all the latest news about technology for children. We love to follow cool new inventions on Kickstarter and we hunt out all the latest announcements about tech toys and gadgets for the coming Christmas holidays. You'll also get our take on children's technology stories in the media.

REVIEWS$show=/search/label/review

Our kids technology product reviews are intended to help you work out whether a toy, gadget or kit is a good fit for your child or family. There's lots of cool stuff available, but is it the right choice for the child or teenager that you are buying for? We'll help you make the right choices and get the best value for money.

GIFT GUIDES$show=/search/label/gift%20guide

Parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and friends assemble. We create gift lists to help you make good choices for kids technology which helps them develop the right skills for the future. We research the best in Coding Toys and Games, Making / Craft Tools and Kits, STEM/STEAM related gifts, Programmable Robots, Electronics Kits and Gadgets for Tech Age Kids and Teens.

PROJECTS$show=/search/label/project

Get crafty with technology. Here we'll post all our ideas and projects using technology to get creative and making with kids. You'll find anything from making a lemon battery to a glow-in-the-dark Minecraft sword. Our projects are tried and tested on our own kids or at events we run, so we are sure you can have a go at home with your kids. Some of our projects use specific tech gadgets which we provide links for you to purchase.

STEM$show=/search/label/stem

STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics. In recent years there is an increased focus in these areas of study. We like to include Art and Design too, so we often talk about STEAM (A stands for Art). At Tech Age Kids we believe Coding is a new literacy and children need to understand how technology works, practice making skills and grow in their curiosity to make a better future for us all.

CODING$show=/search/label/coding

Coding is increasingly being recognised as an important skill for children to learn. Some will learn to code at school or at a coding club, but it's brilliant if they get support at home too.

ELECTRONICS$show=/search/label/electronics

We think it's really important for kids to get hands-on with electronics and learn how to make circuits and write code to control hardware. Younger kids can start with conductive playdough. For kids who like to combine craft and tech, littleBits are fab. And we love SAM Labs wireless electronics components for making it easy for kids to make Internet of Things inventions. Lots of electronics kits for kids have support for the Arduino microprocessor environment. The DuinoKit Jr is one of our favourites. Arduino is a fab skill for older kids and teens to develop.

ROBOTICS$show=/search/label/robotics

We love robots at Tech Age Kids, especially programmable ones. We've got lots of them and write reviews and projects that use them. Our programmable robots for kids buying guide is a good place to start if you're not sure what's available. Roby the mBot Meccano robot dog is one of our popular projects and has been with us to lots of events. Our Ozobot LEGO trailer is fab for kids who love LEGO and robots.

MAKING AND CRAFT$show=/search/label/making

We're advocates of the creative use of technology, but this needs to be balanced with developing physical skills such as papercraft, woodwork, clay modelling, technical drawing and soldering. If children don't develop these skills as they grow up then physical making projects can become frustrating rather than fun. The Maker Community uses the term 'making' as a broad term to include all sorts of artisan skills or craft activities. Being able to make things can lead to life-long hobbies or even careers. It's a great feeling to be able to take a project from an idea in your head to a real object that does something. We're particularly interested to explore products that combine maker skills with tech skills such as electronics but others focus purely on the physical making skills that are still important to modern making.

Zoomer Chimp Competes with Family Pet - Review


Zoomer Chimp by Spin Master is a voice activated robotic chimp packed with lots of tech. My 6 and 8 year old tested out Zoomer Chimp and squealed with laughter playing with it. Unfortunately our poor family dog was less impressed by the new addition in the family.

At Tech Age Kids, we generally look at toys and especially robots that are programmable and have educational value. Sometimes it's fun to have a tech toy just for its entertainment value and Zoomer Chimp definitely ticks that box. It is packed with some cool tech (although not programmable in the traditional sense).

Disclaimer: Spin Master sent us a Zoomer Chimp to review. This is not a sponsored post and as always our opinions are our own.

What's in the Box?

Zoomer Chimp comes in a rather large and impressive looking box. Note, it's easier to open it from the bottom and you'll need some scissors to cut the ties holding the toy in place.

You get an instruction manual, standard USB charging cable (no wall charger) and command / reference card in English and German.

If you're planning to get this as a Christmas gift, we recommend you charge Zoomer Chimp the night before. It takes approximately 1 hour to charge fully.



First Impressions


Our first impressions of Zoomer Chimp, is that it's loud, fun and does surprising things. My kids most enjoyed the burps, farts and silly noises - a true sign that Spinmaster understands child humour.

Under the surface, there is some great tech, making the chimp interactive and animated.

It's a bit frustrating to get it out of the box and have to charge it first, so make sure you do this before you get the kids involved. Once Zoomer Chimp was charged, my boys had lots of fun giving it voice commands and chasing our poor dog with Zoomer Chimp in guard mode.

I was impressed with the animatronics in the chimp's face. There is a rubber-like plastic on the face which is pliable to allow the mouth and brow to move and show expression.


Power and Charging

We really like that Zoomer Chimp comes with a USB charger and didn't have to struggle with changing batteries. It takes about 1 hour to charge for 15 min of play time.

Make sure the switch on the back is on the "red dot" when you charge Zoomer Chimp, the eyes will turn blue when it is charging and green when it's fully charged.

Eye Colour Indicators


The eye colours are the main indicators of what mode the chimp is in. Keep the reference card handy when you first start playing, to know which commands to say.

Voice Recognition


We were really impressed with the voice recognition capability of Zoomer Chimp. The chimp managed to understand my non-native accent and my son's British accent. It had a little difficulty understanding the excited shouts from my 6 year old though.

We thought the chimp was better at "listening" to voice commands than our Meccanoid robot, which tends not to like too much background noise.

Activate the voice command setting by pushing the button on top of the chimp's head, wait for the eyes to turn purple and then clearly speak your command.




Distance Sensors

There are distance sensors in the eyes and nose, which allows it to really interact. You can push it back by holding your hand in front of it's face. When it is in guard mode, the chimp will lurch forward when it senses anything in front of it. My boys absolutely loved this feature.

Balancing Act

Much like the Coder MiP from WowWee, the Zoomer Chimp has some impressive balancing technology. The chimp can stand up straight and even dance or "Go Bananas" whilst keeping its balance.

It's mostly on all fours, can sit and do impressive flips. Our favourite movement, was when the cheeky chimp wriggles his behind in the air!

Verdict

Zoomer Chimp will make a brilliant Christmas present, which will entertain and delight all members of the family. It's the type of toy you'll want to show off to your friends and get out every now and again.

It's a shame it only lasts approximately 15 min of play time, but we get that it needs to power a lot of tech to make the Zoomer Chimp move and interact. Personally after 15 min, it's about time to have a break from the chimp noises!

We do like all the cool tech used to make Zoomer Chimp.

The eyes that light up, can look a bit scary for a young child, so make sure you introduce the toy and talk about why the eyes light up.

Zoomer Chimp is recommended for ages 5+ which seems about right, especially with all the noise and silly sounds that comes out of this chimp!



Name

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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children: Zoomer Chimp Competes with Family Pet - Review
Zoomer Chimp Competes with Family Pet - Review
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Tech Age Kids | Technology for Children
https://www.techagekids.com/2016/11/zoomer-chimp-competes-with-family-pet.html
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