One of the more challenging toys for most children on the Autism spectrum are traditional RC (remote control) toys. The remote control device can be hard for kids to navigate because many controllers have two different joystick controls: One that makes the object go forward and one that makes it go backward, and one that makes it go left and right. Add in the fact that the controller is navigating a remote object, it can cause spacial relation and processing challenges for children on the spectrum, causing a lot of frustration.
At North American International Toy Fair, KD Interactive introduced a new product called Aura. This drone ditches a traditional controller and instead allows kids to control a drone using hand gestures. Not only is it an evolution in toys, but I believe it is groundbreaking with respect to how autistic children can play with toys of this nature.
Aura is a gesture-controlled drone for kids ages 7 and up that uses patented Gesturebotics technology powered by LocoRobo. The user wears a glove, and controls the movements of the flying robot is controlled by making specific hand motions. Using gestures, children can have Aura rolling on the floor, climbing the walls, and even flying around the room.
With a $99.99 price tag, you want to protect your toy investment. Thus, its rolling cage protects the robot from crashing, offering fun and safe play. It mitigates breakage that can be upsetting to traditional children. It also minimizes even more maladaptive behaviors in children on the spectrum. Even if it crashes to the ground, it stays intact so all children can pick it up and keep playing with minimal disruptions.
Previously only used in military applications, this gesture technology now enables children on the spectrum to see cause and effect using their own bodies. Moving your hand up makes the drone fly up. Moving your hand to the right causes the drone to go right. Many children of this diagnosis do not have the executive functioning necessary to easily meet the learning curve of a joystick type controller. By eliminating it, and offering other therapeutic opportunities with processing and physical therapy, Aura puts the fun back into an RC toy for autistic kids.
This toy will have these kiddos feeling like they superheroes they truly are every day.