Zoomer Dino Review

Summary

Zoomer Dino is a multiple award-winning, robotic pet that uses technology and a sense of fun to provide kids an experience of training and taming a dinosaur. Winner of the Toy of the Year Award 2015 and the 2014 Good Housekeeping Best Toy Awards, Zoomer Dino is designed for kids 5+ and above.

Pros

LED lights in eyes to indicate multiple moods or mode.

Option of remote controlling the toy.

Head sensors allow interaction with gesture commands when not being remote controlled.

True Balance Technology makes the toy very mobile and stable.

Rechargeable LiPo battery runs the robot.

Cons

Needs a lot of room to roll on.

Battery must be fully charged for full operation.

One charge lasts between 20 and 30 minutes.

Erratic performance.

Made in China.

Full Review

The Zoomer Dino is designed to be a mobile toy that has a mind of its own but which can also be tamed or controlled. It can spin in circles, move forward and backward, responds to motion and touch, and is also designed to emit lifelike roars and chomp. The movements are designed to be as lifelike as possible. It is easy to charge via a computer or a wall adapter. There have been some shipments that users have received, which wouldn’t charge out of the box. However reputed sellers like Amazon.com have usually replaced faulty products.

What Type of a Toy is Zoomer Dino?

The toy uses True Balance Technology to balance and move freely around the house. It has its own moods that the child can tame with hand gestures. The toy’s moods are designed to be unpredictable, but it is possible to train the robot with hand gestures in the training mode. LED lights in the eyes indicate mood:

  • Green: Very happy
  • Blue: Curious
  • Purple: Gesture Command or training mode
  • Red: Angry
  • Yellow: Control Pod mode
  • Orange: Battery low

IR sensors detect when the Control Pod is turned on, while sensors in the nose area detect movements and objects around the toy. Some users have found that even when fully charged the toy doesn’t change moods or walk with commands from the remote controller. But in general the toy has performed as expected.

What is the Best Age for Zoomer Dino?

The toy is recommended for kids 5+ and older. Users have found kids between the ages of 4 and 12 have also enjoyed playing with the Dino. It should not be used by kids below 3 for safety reasons. Older children with an interest in remote controlled toys will enjoy the toy, though others may lose interest soon.

What Is the Difference Between this Zoomer Dino and Other Zoomer Dino Toys?

Zoomer offers some other controllable Dino toys such as the Bonekruncher (available only on Kmart) which can be fed with a Dino Snack unlike the classic Zoomer Dino available on Amazon and ToysRUs. The Onyx is the same toy in black available only on Toys R Us, and it comes with a collector’s case. Other exclusives like Krimson for Kohl’s and Limited Edition Metallic Gold Finish for Toys R Us are also the same toy with different appearances.

Is the Toy Ready To Use Out of the Box?

Zoomer Dino is not ready to use immediately when you have unboxed it. The first thing you will need to do is to charge the LiPo (Lithium Polymer) battery that runs the robot. LiPo batteries are commonly used in RC helicopters because they are lightweight and pack a lot of power in a small space. To charge the Zoomer Dino battery, you will need the USB charging cable that comes with the toy. Turn over the dinosaur and flip the charging compartment on its belly open. The Zoomer Dino power should be off during charging. The mini USB end is inserted into the slot on the toy, and the USB end can be plugged into a computer or a wall adapter. Zoomer Dino does not come with a wall adapter. You can use any USB to wall adapter for charging without a computer.

The Dino’s eyes act as indicators. Red indicates it is charging, and when charging is over the eyes turn green. If the LED is neither green nor red, there may be an error. You may need to unplug and reconnect the charging cable.

The control pod can also be used to control the toy. It requires three AAA batteries for remote control. These batteries are also not included in the package. To equip the control pod with batteries, unscrew the battery cover and place 3 AAA batteries into the slots available.

How Can You Control the Zoomer Dino with Gestures?

There are two main ways of controlling the toy – with the control pod or via hand gestures. When the dinosaur is fully charged and turned on, the eyes turn green. Pressing the BACK button on the toy’s back raises it on its feet and makes it balance on its own. Pressing the BACK button until the eyes turn purple will put the toy in training mode. The controlling hand should be 6 inches or 15 cm away from the nose for best results. Sensors located in the nose can follow hand gestures to make the toy respond to the child:

  • Waving the hand quickly before the head brings a tail whip response.
  • Holding the hand over the nose to make it sit; pressing the BACK button afterwards brings the toy back up again.
  • In the Sit position, waving a hand over the nose gets Zoomer Dino to speak.
  • Touching the toy’s tail makes it angry and its eyes turn red.
  • If the toy falls on its head or backwards, pressing the BACK button or the ANGRY button on the Control Pod gets it back on its feet again.

How to Move Zoomer Dino Forward with Control Pod?

When the controller is in use, Zoomer Dino’s eyes glow yellow. In this mode, the user can control the toy’s head and tail with the joystick; hold the joystick to make it run, and press the CHOMP button for chomping action. The controller has a joystick and two buttons. To move the toy forward on the Control Pod, the large green joystick and the lower button will need to be pressed together to tip the head and move the Dino forward. This step may take a little practice but users have found it is easy to get used to.

How Long Does the Toy Last On A Single Charge?

The toy comes with a 3.7V/450mAh LiPo battery that takes an hour to charge. If the eyes turn orange, it is an indicator of low battery. The charge lasts for about 20 to 30 minutes, which may not seem like a lot of time to keep your child engaged. However, many parents have found that it is long enough for their kids to stay occupied before getting distracted. The Zoomer Dino charges quicker with a wall adapter, than it does via PC.

Does the Zoomer Dino Run On Carpets?

The Zoomer Dino is designed for use on flat and smooth surfaces. It will not perform well on very slippery floors or deep carpets. However users have operated the toy on low pile carpets with no problems. The toy should not be used on a table or near stairs to prevent damage. The toy needs a lot of room to roam in.

How To Care for Zoomer Dino?

There are some safety tips recommended by the manufacturers for keeping your toy in good condition. The toy is only designed for indoor use. Grass, dirt and cement can leave scratches in the toy and potentially block the head sensors. The toy should not be submerged in water or operated near water since it can lead to malfunctions or damage in the electronic parts. To keep the sensors clean, they can be wiped with a scratchless cleaning cloth. To ensure battery life, a discharged toy should be allowed to cool for 15 minutes before being charged again. Charging the toy fully takes an hour.

What Is the Warranty Offered On the Toy?

The Zoomer Dino does not come with a warranty. In case customers receive faulty products, the return or replacement policy of the store of purchase will rule.

How Much Does Zoomer Dino Cost?

The Zoomer Dino is somewhat expensive as a toy, priced at <$78.49>  on Amazon.com. Some customers have found this value for money, since their children were very interested in the toy. Others have found their children lost interest very quickly. The toy can be a good gift depending on the age and temperament of the recipient. Customers who prefer USA-made products may prefer to stay away from the China-made Zoomer Dino.

The customer response to Zoomer Dino is good on average. The toy has earned a rating of 4.1 out of 5 on Amazon.com, from 491 customers. The majority have rated it 5 and 4 stars, though half that number have voted 1 to 3 stars.

In general, if you are looking for a remote-controlled, smart electronic pet for a young child or a child interested in robots, the Zoomer Dino is a suitable choice. Slightly on the pricier side, the toy nevertheless brings a unique concept and lifelike dinosaur to homes with children.

Zoomer Interactive Puppy – Interactive Fun on a Whole New Level

Summary:

Zoomer is an interactive toy robot dog by Spin Master. The first version of Zoomer was released in 2013 and gained rave reviews from parents and children alike. Bentley is the latest version of Zoomer. With more interactive features and a whole new bag of tricks, this robot dog is simply a joy to be around and your kids are bound to benefit from a developmental perspective while they have loads of fun. Zoomer has been designed as a fun companion for children keeping them engaged and intrigued.

Pros:

  • Fun interactive features
  • Extremely realistic and engaging
  • Can actually learn and respond to new commands
  • Great for kids who want a real puppy but are not old enough to handle one.
  • Can respond to 3 languages – English, French, and Spanish.

Cons:

  • A bit expensive
  • Battery charge doesn’t last as desired.

Full Review:

The new Zoomer Interactive Puppy robot is finally out. The Zoomer puppy has undergone a lot of tweaking and comes with a whole gamut of new features that will enable you to spend some quality time with your kids. The design is very effective in the sense that it doesn’t give the feel of a lousy electronic toy, but almost creates the effect of interacting with a real puppy. The cute puppy eyes follow you as you move around. It can learn to wag its tail, roll over, and even has a “free” mode where it actually romps around and behaves like it has a mind of its own. Zoomer comes in different versions such as Bentley and Shadow, so you can adopt the puppy of your preference. Only two color variations are available currently. This review takes you through the main features in detail and answers pertinent questions about this amazing new wonder toy.

What does the Zoomer Package include?

Apart from your cute Zoomer interactive Puppy, the package includes a USB charging cable that you can plug into your laptop or computer, a training guide for the toy and the list of commands that Zoomer responds to. There is also a reference guide that you can use in situations where you forget what its features are. A cute addition to the package is an adoption certificate that you have to fill out with owner information, so that your kid gets the feeling of having adopted a real puppy.

How is the Zoomer Interactive Puppy Different from other toy dogs on the market?

If you are not familiar with the original Zoomer from Spin Master, you need to know that Zoomer is not your standard run of the mill electrionic toy. It is designed to learn, respond, and behave like a real puppy. We’re talking about life-like responses. He can be excitedly running around, will actually fetch things on command, perform tricks to amuse you, and work on getting attention from you. You just get to experience the joy of having a real puppy without the downsides such as shedding hair on your furniture, chewing up your newspaper, and peeing on the floor (although Zoomer actually tries to).

What are the different hardware components that make Zoomer interactive puppy cutting edge?

  • Zoomer has LED eyes that can follow you around when you move and will actually change to create the effect of different responses.
  • There is a random trick button which will make the puppy respond to your petting with special cute tricks.
  • Zoomer has infrared sensors that pick up on voice commands to obey.
  • The robot dog also has five individual motors that provide real dog like movements.
  • The wheels under its legs give Zoomer a fluid smooth motion while it chases balls and follows you around.

How do you charge the Zoomer Interactive Puppy and how long does the charge last?

You can charge your toy dog with the USB charger wire provided in the box by plugging it into your laptop or computer USB slot. You need to initially charge it for one hour. You could also buy a separate USB adaptor that enables you to plug it into a conventional house power socket. Actual playtime depends entirely on how you use it. It can give you 30 minutes of uninterrupted playtime, but you will learn to use the power optimally to get more juice over time.

What does Zoomer Interactive Puppy do in the “Independent” mode?

This is a special feature that gives Zoomer an endearing quality. When you’re not paying attention or giving commands, the robot puppy switches to this mode and will wander around the house on its own. It could also let out its bag of tricks to get your attention while in this mode. These include:

  • Stretching its legs and arching its back
  • Standing and wagging its tail as a show of happiness
  • Pant like its thirsty
  • Barking for no apparent reason
  • Sniffing its way around the house
  • Lie down on the floor and “go to sleep.”

What are the developmental benefits that Zoomer provides for your kids?

Zoomer is operated through a sequence of voice commands that need to be delivered within a specific time window. This will actually help develop your child’s counting skills. Zoomer can be trained to learn new tricks. The child develops problem solving and communication skills while trying to teach the electronic puppy new stuff. Apart from that, your child feels happy and rewarded when Zoomer responds to these commands.

Is there any special care or maintenance required?

Having been designed as an indoor toy, Zoomer is not suitable for rough outdoor use. Avoid operating Zoomer in places with mud or gravel as it could get into the wheels and damage the operating system. Prolonged exposure to direct sunlight can damage infrared sensors. Avoid exposure to moisture or excessively humid environments. You can wipe the toy clean with a scratch free cloth when required.

Conclusion

Overall, the Zoomer Interactive Puppy dog can be a great playmate for your kid. Initially, you will have to spend time “training” the dog to your voice and in some cases, this can take frustratingly long. You need to be patient to make the toy puppy recognize commands initially, but the rewarding experience of getting the dog to respond to your commands is truly worth the effort.