Mattel gives Barbie a 21st century makeover with the Hello Barbie Hologram

mattel hello barbie hologram new york toy fair 2017
Mattel
Since its debut in the late 1950s, Mattel’s famous Barbie line of dolls enjoyed a massively successful run of popularity — even if it ruffled a few feathers along the way. Scrutiny be damned, Mattel finds itself back in the spotlight again this week as it announced a brand new Barbie experience called the Hello Barbie Hologram. Aside from its holographic effect, the device also reportedly features voice command compatibility similar to that of Amazon’s Echo or Google’s Home device.

Structurally, the Hello Barbie Hologram ditches the physical plastic models of old in favor of a larger Barbie-themed box featuring a small transparent screen. It is on this screen users have the ability to interact with the projected Barbie — like changing her appearance, asking her to dance, switching her outfit, etc. Where the Amazon Echo-like commands come into play concern the box’s ability to set alarms, add events to a virtual calendar, and read the upcoming weather forecast. Additionally, a familiar wake word of “Hello Barbie” brings the tiny hologram from her digital slumber.

Though while Amazon’s Echo and Google’s Home tend to cause worry over their ability to record conversations, Mattel says the Hello Barbie Hologram won’t feature the option of saving any recordings to the company’s servers. Furthermore, the box itself utilizes 256-bit encryption while transmitting information to and from the cloud, which meets the Federal Trade Commission’s conditions set forth in the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Rule (COPPA). Because of this, parents have full access to any data collected by Mattel.

Currently, the Hello Barbie Hologram sits on display at Mattel’s American International Toy Fair booth, however, it is merely a mock-up of the eventual finished product. Mattel has not disclosed an exact price, though it did say to plans for it to run lower than $300. The Hello Barbie Hologram launches later in 2017.

Product Review

Ring Video Doorbell 2 is the simplest entry into a smarter doorway

The Ring Video Doorbell 2 may lack the style and sophistication of premium door-dingers, but few can match its simplicity and versatility. The device, available in both wired and wireless configurations, is easy to set up and adds instant…
Smart Home

What exactly is Alexa? Where does she come from? And how does she work?

While "Alexa" has become synonymous with products like the Amazon Echo, you can't actually go out and buy an "Alexa." So what is Alexa? How does she work? Here's everything you need to know about Amazon's virtual assistant.
Product Review

From tables to porches, Ring's Stick Up Cam watches wherever you want

Ring’s latest home security camera offers more versatility than ever before, with the ability to mount it, set it on a table, or put it inside or outside. We got a chance to test it out. Here’s how it went.
Smart Home

Google Home Mini vs. Amazon Echo Dot: Which smart home speaker is better?

We put the two most popular smart home speakers -- the Google Home Mini and the 3rd generation Amazon Echo Dot -- together and tested them on appearance, audio, and abilities. So which should you buy? Find out how they did in our showdown.
Deals

The best Presidents’ Day sales 2019: Amazon, Walmart, Dell, and more

Presidents' Day sales are a great chance to score electronics, clothing, home and office stuff, and other goodies at a discount. We’ve smoked out a large handful of the best of these Presidents' Day deals, from tech to bedding, to help…
Smart Home

Perlick brings a bigger, bolder version of its high-tech fridge to KBIS 2019

Milwaukee-based manufacturer Perlick has been making refrigerators for nearly 50 years. It will be unveiling a bigger, bolder version of its popular column refrigerator at KBIS 2019.
Smart Home

No strings attached: This levitating lamp uses science to defy gravity

Now on Kickstarter, the Levia lamp is a cool industrial-looking lamp which boasts a levitating bulb. Looking for a table light that will dazzle visitors? You've come to the right place.
Deals

Walmart drops prices on Roomba Robot Vacuums for Presidents’ Day

Spring cleaning is just around the corner, and Walmart has already begun dropping prices on Roomba, Shark, and Eufy robot vacuums. For a limited time, you can save as much as $150 on a brand-new iRobot Roomba.
Deals

The best Presidents’ Day vacuum deals: Roomba, Dyson, and Bissell

Amazon and Walmart are offering pretty substantial savings to help kick-start your spring cleaning. Top brands like Roomba, Dyson, and Bissell are dropping prices left and right for Presidents' Day.
Smart Home

After camera hacks, Nest locks customers out until they change their password

Nest is locking people out of their accounts if it believes there may have been a breach. Users will have to set up a new, secure password before they are able to regain access to their account.
Smart Home

Champagne-colored fridges? Talking toilets? All the appliance trends in 2019

Ever wished you had Amazon Alexa in your bathroom or a brightly colored appliance? The Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS) starts today, and here are some of the trends we expect to see at the show and beyond.
Smart Home

Your office is a mess, and it’s making Marie Kondo cry. Here’s how to tidy it up

Here's how to "Marie Kondo" your office. If you've been inspired to remove clutter and create a minimalistic workspace that makes you happy and helps you focus on what matters, then we have ideas that you'll want to try.
Smart Home

Innit showcases new solutions for LG’s Signature Kitchen Suite at KBIS 2019

LG Electronics has equipped its new Signature Kitchen Suite devices with a host of technologies and guests of KBIS 2019 can check out the company's new innovations from Innit, including new adaptive cook programs.
Smart Home

Leviton’s Wi-Fi Load Center and Smart Circuit Breakers give your home a brain

Is your home ready for a brain transplant? Adding individual smart plugs is quick, easy, and inexpensive, but the benefits are limited to one plug at a time. Leviton's Load Center and Smart Circuit Breakers can give your home a brain.