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Mattel and Hasbro said to be ‘terrified’ as more kids seek high-tech Christmas gifts

Published Dec 24th, 2012 4:00PM EST
Tablets Children's Most Wanted Christmas

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Back in the old days, American kids only wanted a Barbie doll or a G.I. Joe action figure for Christmas and all was right with the world. But times have changed, and today American children are looking to get more high-tech Christmas gift such as tablets, the Financial Times reports. In fact, today’s children are so interested in tablets and smartphones that major toy manufacturers Hasbro and Mattel are said to be worried sick about their futures.

“The top two guys, Mattel and Hasbro, they are terrified,” Sean McGowan, managing director of equity research at Needham & Company, told the Financial Times. “They should be terrified, but the official party line is they’re not terrified.”

These anxieties are compounded by the fact that Mattel’s top-selling product this year isn’t any kind of traditional toy, but a plastic cellphone case. And as the Financial Times notes, tablets aren’t just something that children use every now and then out of boredom, since “the amount of time children are spending with technology devices has skyrocketed” because they can “watch free content online and play free video games for hours on end.”

Brad Reed
Brad Reed Staff Writer

Brad Reed has written about technology for over eight years at and Network World. Prior to that, he wrote freelance stories for political publications such as AlterNet and the American Prospect. He has a Master's Degree in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University.