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Bitzee – a digital pet for my child?

3 minutes reading time
6-10 years
Tool description
Spin Master

It’s cute, wants to be fed and invites you to play: Bitzee, the electronic pet in the box. The game is becoming increasingly popular with children and is a frequent topic of conversation in the playground. We explain what the digital toy is all about.

In brief

  • Electronic toys
  • 15 Caring for pets from baby to super animal
  • From 5 years
  • Cost: 39.99 euros (as of June 2024)
  • Provider: Spin Master

What can the Bitzee do?

Feeding, stroking, playing – the Bitzee is a digital pet you can touch and works on a similar principle to a Tamagotchi from the 1990s, but in a modern version. In a handy box, a moving display brings one of 15 different characters to life and encourages play and interaction. The display works similarly to a hologram and reacts to touch. At the beginning, there are three pets available, such as a dog, fish or hedgehog, the so-called “Bitzees”. When the box is opened, the Bitzee uses a sound and the display to tell you what it needs. If the tasks such as feeding, rocking to sleep or cleaning up droppings are completed, the Bitzee develops from a baby to an adult animal to a super Bitzee. The entire box is used for this: the Bitzee reacts to movements such as tilting, lifting and shaking the box as well as swiping across the bar. Once all the tasks of a bite are completed, a mini-game is unlocked and a new treat is ready. This can be used to unlock new Bitzees.

What fascinates children/youth about it?

The Bitzee is great fun for children. Digital toys are particularly popular at an early primary school age. Children form Bitzee groups, show each other their digital animals, compare them and play together. Bitzees are a popular way to relieve boredom and offer an alternative to gaming on mobile devices. The handy box means they can accompany children everywhere. Many children have a desire for a pet. The need to take care of something is fulfilled to a certain extent by the Bitzee. Players achieve quick success: those who look after their Bitzee well are rewarded with an increase in the Heart-O-Meter and quickly advance to a higher game level. The mini-games, funny sounds and small animations are fun for children.

What can be problematic about the offer?

The moving display is a projection and flickers. These light reflections can be dangerous for epileptics, which is why the instructions contain a health warning. The vibrations of the display produce a noise that is quite loud and cannot be regulated. The toy is battery-operated and soon becomes less attractive once all 15 animals have been unlocked. In terms of sustainability, the question arises as to the cost-benefit aspect of this digital toy.

What does the provider think?

Instructions in various languages are available on the website. The Bitzee box only sends messages when it is open. If a pet ‘s needs are not met, the animals may run away. However, they can be attracted again with treats. The device can be reset and all animals can be played again. Bitzee was awarded 3rd place in the TOMMI Children’s Software Prize by the jury of children and experts. The provider Spin Master has announced that it will be expanding its range and developing even more gaming experiences “out of the box”.

What should parents pay attention to?

Children love to look after the Bitzee and play with it. They quickly develop an ambition to bring each animal up to the highest level and unlock more animals. This provides an incentive to play the game again and again. This urge to play a lot quickly subsides as soon as the 15 animals have been played through. If the box is closed, nothing happens – the Bitzee takes a break and there are no disadvantages in the game. Help your child to put the Bitzee to one side and find balance in other activities. Keep an eye on your child’s media time and agree on rules for gaming in the family. If your child wants to have a Bitzee, discuss the background to the request together and don’t let other parents’ rules put you under pressure. Readindependent reviewsfrom other consumers and make an informed decision together.

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