EAST AURORA, N.Y., June 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Touch-screen technology is everywhere and it comes as no surprise that today's children are practically born digital. It's second nature for even the youngest children to pick up a smart device and instinctively navigate to find their favorite, age-appropriate apps. As parents try to help their children find a healthy balance between traditional and tech play, one thing is for certain...this growing trend isn't slowing down any time soon.

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In 2011, Fisher-Price, the leading maker of infant and preschool toys and Mattel's largest brand, took an innovative approach to integrating "app-cessories" into its product line by creating the Laugh & Learn™ Apptivity™ Case for iPhone® and iPod® touch devices to protect parents' coveted devices from babies' dribble and drool. The Apptivity Case, appropriate for children ages six months+, was developed in conjunction with free Laugh & Learn apps to enable infants to experience their favorite Laugh & Learn characters, like the beloved Puppy, in a new, engaging format.

To date, the Laugh & Learn apps have had over 2.8 million downloads and the number continues to grow. Last month, Fisher-Price launched a new Laugh & Learn app for the iPhone and iPod touch — the Laugh & Learn Learning Letters Monkey app — that interacts with its new Laugh & Learn Apptivity™ Monkey. Babies can squeeze the plush monkey's hands and feet to interact with the app, which teaches them about colors, numbers, animals and more. Even without a device inside, the Laugh & Learn Apptivity Monkey entertains babies with more than 10+ sung-songs, tunes and phrases.

"This generation of children is the most tech-savvy yet," said Kathleen Alfano, Senior Director, Child Research at Fisher-Price. "Families share their smart devices and children often inherit their parents' hand-me-down devices to call their own. While smart phones and age-appropriate apps have become a seamless, new developmental tool for children, parents can still keep a well-rounded toy box that includes both traditional and tech toys."

In May, Fisher-Price launched its Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case for iPad® devices, which is off to a strong start. In addition, the company is launching a Kid-Tough® Apptivity™ Case for iPhone and iPod touch devices, aimed at preschoolers age 3+, with a new, free Photo Studio App (available now) that features a wide variety of drawing tools, stampers, frames and special effects so preschoolers can explore their visual creativity.  

To help kick off its new 2012 app-cessory products, Fisher-Price released a few "Just Like Mom and Dad" photos— including shots of father and son and mother and daughter tapping away at tablets and smartphones in a local coffee shop. The children's devices were protected by Fisher-Price Apptivity cases and it's hard to tell who was more immersed — parents or their children. Download high-resolution photos at http://www.multivu.com/mnr/56836-fisher-price-laugh-learn-apps-toddlers-touch-screen-technology.

Visit the Apple iTunes Store for a complete list of Fisher-Price iPhone and iPad apps designed for babies six months and older — all available for free download — including Where's Puppy's Nose? For Baby, which teaches Baby about body parts with two fun characters; and Let's Count Animals For Baby, which encourages Baby to learn about numbers and animals through interaction with engaging animations and sound effects; among others. In addition, preschool apps, for children 3+, are also available.

The Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case for iPhone and iPod touch devices and the Apptivity Monkey are compatible with the iPhone 1G, 3G, 3GS, 4G and iPod touch 3G and 4G. The Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case for iPad is compatible with iPad 1 and iPad 2. The Kid-Tough Apptivity Case for iPhone and iPod touch devices is designed to work with the iPhone 1G, 3G, 3GS, 4G and iPod touch 3G and 4G.  Apple electronic products are not included. Apple, iPhone, iPad, iPod touch and iTunes are trademarks of Apple Inc., registered in the U.S. and other countries. App Store is a service mark of Apple Inc.

About Fisher-Price:

Fisher-Price, Inc., a subsidiary of Mattel, Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) located in East Aurora, N.Y., is the leading brand of infant and preschool toys in the world.  The company's legacy of high quality toys has enhanced early childhood development for more than 81 years.  Some of the Company's best-known "classic" brands include Little People®, Power Wheels®, View-Master® and Imaginext®.   Fisher-Price is also a leading developer of baby gear products (infant swings, bouncers, high chairs), as well as a wide array of character-based toys inspired by high quality children's programming such as Dora the Explorer™, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and Thomas & Friends®.  The Company's website, www.fisher-price.com, as well as its Facebook page, www.facebook.com/fisherprice provide valuable information and resources to parents and grandparents around the world.

Media Contacts:

Juliette Reashor

 Susannah Frank

Fisher-Price, Inc.

 Weber Shandwick





SOURCE Fisher-Price, Inc.

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