My Friend Cayla allows children to get information from the internet. She is 18 inches tall, modestly dressed, and has hair that can be styled.
Priced at €75, the doll can be hooked up to the internet using an app but can only go places that are protected by Google SafeSearch technology.
Cayla can also be played with independently via a free downloadable app. This enables children to play games, read stories, and talk to her about her scrapbook as well as getting help with homework and research.
Parents can also use the app to add words or phrases to the blocked list for added protection during playing.
Among the top dozen toys chosen by the Toy Retailers Association is Disney’s Frozen Snow Glow Elsa, a talking and singing doll priced at €45.
Patrick O’Sullivan of the Christmas Toy Show, which takes place at the RDS in Dublin this month, said the doll was hard to get simply because the manufacturer failed to forecast the demand for it.
It was released last year and manufacturers, who decided on production last January, thought demand for the doll, based on the lead character of the smash hit movie Frozen, would have cooled off by now.
Other top toys include VTech’s Kidizoom Smart Watch, priced at €50, which has an intuitive touchscreen, a built-in camera, voice recorder, and three games. It also tells the time!
Little Live Pets Bird Cage is priced at €25 and the birds that can sit and swing in it are €12 each. The birds respond to touch and become happier the more they are played with. They even whistle a special tune.
Boomer Dino, priced at €130, is the ultimate prehistoric interactive — his eyes change colour depending on his mood.
Lego became the top toy company this year when it overtook Mattel and is also on the dream list, with Benny’s Spaceship from The Lego Movie. Made up of 940 pieces, it is priced at €105.
The big guns have also made it to the must-have toys. The Nerf Demolisher, priced at €59, fires up to 90ft. The operator can blast missiles, a hail of bullets, or even a combination of both.
O’Sullivan said loom bands, children’s biggest summer craze, failed to make the dream dozen, but toy retailers were happy it contributed to making 2014 the biggest year for sales since 2010.