CogniToys Dino Review (Cognitoys)

CogniToys Dino
What It Is
CogniToys Dino is an interactive and educational learning toy. What makes CogniToys Dino special is that he is powered by IBM Watson—so he’s a bit smarter than your average Dino. IBM Watson is a platform that is continually learning so everything you say to Dino, he not only remembers but can use in the future to further engage with you. 

To get started, download the Cognitoys app and pair your Bluetooth device with your Cognisaur. Dino is WiFi-enabled. Within the app, parents can also feed important info to Dino such as your child’s name, birthday and bedtime, which disables the toy from use during certain hours. By inputting your child's name, the toy will immediately register what grade level content to offer the child.

So, how to play? Press the big button on your Cognisaur’s belly to turn it on. From there it’ll start asking questions such as do you want to play a game, do you want to hear a story, etc. 

If at anytime you want to do these things, simply press and hold in the button on his belly and say something like "Tell me a story", or "Tell me a joke." Dino’s content is constantly being updated both from what he learns through your engagements with him as well as general improvements to speech recognition etc. through software updates. For parents concerned about Dino learning curse words etc. though don’t worry this toy does not and will not engage in any adult subjects. He’ll usually respond with something like say what?! 

For parents interested in seeing how their child is interacting with Dino, there is an online Parent Panel, which is a secure dashboard that provides insight. Through the dashboard, parents can monitor the topics their child is most interested in as well as adjust account settings and provide feedback for improvement.

Is It Fun?
we were surprised and impressed by the amount of engagement from this little Dino and we also like the educational benefits it can offer children as well. For young kids, we think the most enjoyable features will be storytime, Magic 8-ball, as well as simply asking Dino questions, because it isn’t simply a one-way street conversation. He’ll always have a follow up question for you.
Who It’s For
CogniToys Dino is for ages 5 and up. Although the content does evolve to engage with kids based on their ages, we think younger kids are definitely going to be the ones getting the most enjoyment and use out of having their own interactive dinosaur. 
What To Be Aware Of
If, for example, your child might be at a higher learning level or lower, Dino will adjust content based on their abilities and how they respond to the questions he poses. So it’s always ensuring things are not only age-appropriate but things that will hold their interest. 

Need a bit more guidance in terms of ways to interact with Dino, there are additional resources located within the app and online to offer prompts for Dino and more.

As for the issue of privacy and security, we suggest parents follow-up with the company’s privacy statements and resources for more info but from everything we can tell CogniToys has taken the steps necessary to ensure you and your child’s information is not being compromised. For example, each Dino toy features a different encryption key unique to that specific toy which ensures in a worst case scenario only limited data would get out and the problem could be quickly identified and shut down—but again how you feel about it is up to you. 

We suggest always using a secure WiFi connection for use. If you don't have a strong WiFi connection, you may find Congitoys Dino cuts out or restarts. 

Four AA batteries are required and they are included.  

  • Fun

  • Repeat Play

  • Assembly & Instructions

    None or Very Easy

    4 AA batteries required