NEW YORK — Sept. 27, 2011 — In an industry first, Disney introduced today Disney AppMATes™ Mobile Application Toys, a new toy line that comes to life digitally when used with an Apple iPad by allowing kids to use the tablet’s screen as a virtual play mat. Developed in collaboration between Disney Consumer Products (DCP) and Disney Mobile and featuring patent-pending technology, the Appmates toy line features miniature Disney·PixarCars 2 vehicles with sensors on the base of each toy that are recognized as a unique footprint by an app with no cable or Bluetooth connection required. Simply download the freeCars 2 Appmates app from the iTunes app store, place your favorite Appmates toy character on the screen and play.
“We have cracked the technology code in changing the way kids play with their toys,” said Sunny Lauridsen, director of digital toys for DCP. “Kids will always use toys to play out their favorite Disney stories, but Disney Appmates now allows them to include technology which has become a way of life for them through a beautifully rich app.”
The magic begins when kids place their vehicle on the iPad and begin to explore the world of Cars. Available for download in early to mid-October Cars 2 Appmates app is a free app created by Disney exclusively for use with Appmates toys. By guiding the Appmates vehicle on the screen, the iPad becomes a virtual play mat where kids can experience the world of Radiator Springs.
“We believe iPad is becoming a critical canvas for the next generation of storytelling, and with Appmates we’re bringing Disney characters to life in a way never previously imagined,” said Bart Decrem, general manager of Disney Mobile.
Cars 2 Appmates features include:
- Exploration — Drive around the world of Radiator Springs to discover landscapes and hidden secrets by simply placing the Cars toy character on the screen and turning it in any direction. Drive through mud and up ramps, visit friends at Flo’s V8 Café or check out your Car’s reflection, showing off your latest gear and gadgets.
- Directed Game Play — Perform missions unique to each character. Completed missions — like helping bring a tow hook back to Mater — gain hubcaps, the virtual currency. Collect enough hubcaps to personalize each car with special features like a unique horn sound, customized tire tracks, and cool gear like a rocket launcher or spy vision goggles.
- Racing — Rev up the action by racing against World Grand Prix opponents and your Radiator Springs friends. Five racetracks are available at launch. Race around Willy’s Butte, jump off Carburetor Mesa and roar through downtown Radiator Springs earning hubcaps in day or night races.
Each toy unlocks different features and content within the app specific to the character, allowing kids to come back over and over to enjoy an imaginative, open-ended play experience using the Appmates toys. Fans can download and test the app by simply using their fingers to drive a virtual car through the world, but the play experience is optimized to come to life with the Appmates toy vehicles.
Created in collaboration with Spin Master, Disney Appmates toys launch Oct. 1 at national retailers, Apple Store, Apple Store online, Disney Store and DisneyStore.com with vehicle two-packs (SRP $19.99) featuring four characters including Lightning McQueen, Tow Mater, Finn McMissile, and Holley Shiftwell. Two additional characters — Francesco Bernoulli and Shu Todoroki — will launch in November and be available exclusively through Apple Store and Apple Store online.
With dominant market share, the Apple iPad has become the leading tablet and a shared family device. Just in time for the holiday season, DCP will also introduce an expanded line of‘appcessory’ products to engage and inspire creativity with kids using the iPad. Products include a durable and protective iPad case featuring a Disney·Pixar Cars design (SRP $49.99); Disney Pix Camera that allows kids to take their own pictures and connect them back to the iPad to personalize photos and create albums (SRP $79.99); and Disney Spotlight mic that gives kids a fun way to sing along — karaoke style — with their favorite Disney music (SRP $59.99 wired mic, $99.99 wireless mic).
About Disney Consumer Products
Disney Consumer Products (DCP) is the business segment of The Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) and its affiliates that extends the Disney brand to merchandise ranging from apparel, toys, home décor and books and magazines to foods and beverages, stationery, electronics and fine art. This is accomplished through DCP’s various lines of business which include: Disney Toys, Disney Fashion & Home and Disney Food, Health & Beauty. Other businesses involved in Disney’s consumer products sales are Disney Publishing Worldwide, the world’s largest publisher of children’s books and magazines, and www.DisneyStore.comand www.DisneyStore.co.uk, the company’s official shopping portals. The Disney Stores retail chain, which debuted in 1987, is owned and operated by Disney in North America, Europe, and Japan For more information, please visit Disney Consumer Products or follow us atwww.YouTube.com/DisneyLiving, www.Facebook.com/DisneyLiving andwww.Twitter.com/DisneyLiving.
About Disney Interactive Media Group
Disney Interactive Media Group (DIMG), one of the world’s largest creators of high-quality interactive entertainment across all platforms, is the segment of The Walt Disney Company responsible for the global creation and delivery of interactive entertainment, multi-platform video games, and lifestyle content across all current and emerging digital media platforms. DIMG produces and distributes a broad portfolio of content from its five primary lines of business: Disney Interactive Studios, Disney Online, Disney Online Studios, Disney Mobile, and Playdom. Products and content released and operated by DIMG include blockbuster online virtual worlds, #1-ranked community-family and parenting web destination* that includes Disney.com and the Disney Family network of websites, mobile applications, and video games.