Innovation That Matters

Smart wooden dolls let kids communicate from afar without screens


Avakai are smart wooden dolls that use Bluetooth and various sensors to help children connect to each other from afar without any screens.

The most exciting new toys use technology to enhance physical play rather than replace it, Hackaball and Moff are two such products. Now, Avakai companions are smart wooden dolls that use Bluetooth technology and sensors to let children connect to each other from afar without screens.


Avakai are wooden figurines which aim to bridge the gap between traditional toys and mobile devices. The toys are inspired by Russian Matryoshka dolls and made from locally sourced, long-lasting materials. They contain technology including Bluetooth and touch and movement sensors, enabling them to react to the player’s actions — the dolls communicate with each other through sounds, colored light and haptic feedback. They convey emotions through lights and musical notes and respond to simple actions such as strokes or hugs. They can even communicate remotely through the Avakai mobile app.


The dolls can be used to enhance games such as treasure hunts — they have space inside to hide a small present — or hide and seek. Avakai is currently crowdfunding on Kickstarter where pledgers can pre-order an Avakai couple for a reduced price of USD 149. The toys are expected to ship in March 2016. How else could tech be used to modernize traditional toys?



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