Disney's fairy-themed world, Pixie Hollow, comes with a line of physical toys called Clickables. Bracelets and jewelry boxes allow users to trade virtual goods and add online friends by coming together in the real world.
.. for safety reasons, according to the Disney spokesperson, who points out that swapping toys in real life means less of a risk of swapping data with strangers. Fascinating paragraph pulled out by VWN on how the Disney machine went about brainstorming such a thing:
We knew that online worlds were going to be a big deal and so we got about 50 of our smartest people together from different divisions and of different job types - marketing people, technology people, designers, even finance people and lawyers - and we had a big brainstorm. [...] We came up with probably a few hundred ideas but narrowed it down to 75 really good ones from the two days. Then we narrowed it down to our top 10 and top 5 and in there was the nugget of the Clickables concept. Then we decided that this was such an important area that we would create a dedicated team around it, called our Toymorrow team that would be a little swat team focused on technology in the toy space.
"Toymorrow". Very clever. The Clickables themselves sound pretty novel, too:
...a new technology called Clickables that we are launching in connection to our new Disney Fairies virtual world. It's a way for kids to take their online world experience into the real world. The core of it is a magical bracelet. By simply clicking their [real] bracelets together, girls become friends in the online environment. And it's safer too because if you had to physically click with your friend that means they were in physical proximity to you, you saw them, and you know who they are.
That is indeed pretty magical - and requires the purchase of plenty of realworld objects. Ka-ching. What about boy fairies, though? There's a missed opportunity..