Why iPad is #1 on Kids’ Wishlists for Toys/Games

Why iPad is #1 on Kids’ Wishlists for Toys/Games

iPhone Ranks as the #2 Toy Kids Want

Apple’s iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch are the family favorites for 2012, reports child market research experts KidSay in their Trend Tracker 2012 report. This trend is a significant change from 2010, when the iPod Touch had strong competition from Nintendo and PlayStation:

Top 10 portable gaming devices with kids

Terence Burke, Vice President of Qualitative Research at KidSay, delves into how families are using these devices:

iPhone and iPad are family devices. It’s like the family computer used to be—it’s the family’s iPad. Comparatively, the old smartphone is Mom’s family device.

“The key difference in behavior is the swipe technology. The tablets have broken through the age barrier. Whereas technology used to be for ages 8+ because of the cognitive barrier, with swipe technology, much younger children can use it. Among 5-7 year-olds, use of the iPad is up from 10% in 2011 to 32% in 2012.

“The release of the iPad 2 helped get iPads into the hands of kids as the iPad 1 became the pass-down device—the kids could have it for their own use.  It’s much like how first generation digital cameras were passed down to kids as second generation technology became available. And moms are using iPads to entertain their kids—for instance, waiting at the doctor’s office, they’ll hand over the iPad to kids in strollers. ”

Perhaps because of their experience with the passed-down iPad 1 models, the iPad is the toy/game that kids want the most, followed closely by the iPhone:

iPad is #1 most desired toy or game with kids

We are currently in the middle of a market shift. While more kids than ever currently use a Nintendo portable gaming device, Apple’s devices outrank those devices in terms of desirability. Hence, the iPad is narrowing the gaming device usage gap:

Apple devices closing in on Nintendo for gaming device usage

For retailers, game creators, app developers and accessory brands, this rapid shift towards Apple’s devices requires rethinking business, product and marketing strategies.

Moms this season will be buying more iPads, iPhones, iPods for the family—and they will also be buying apps and products associated with these devices. Earlier this year, I wrote “iPhone Mom: Apple’s Marketing Strategies Win Mom’s Love,” and that love for Apple devices is certainly growing to include the entire family.


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  • One of the big reasons is the SIZE of iPad. The screen is really big, and takes the gaming experience to a whole new level. I like playing Kick the buddy on Ipad.

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