Swapbots are collectible action figures with a twist. Aim your smartphone or tablet at them, and they transform into variable supersized characters that can be used in smartphone and tablet games, as well as interactive storylines. Now, transforming augmented reality (AR) toys aren’t new, but what makes Swapbots compelling is the sheer number of unique combinations thanks to swappable heads, bodies, and legs on the physical figures themselves. The more you mix and match, the more original your virtual characters become. Sounds like an instant recipe for collectible toy mania, virtual and physical, which could happen in 2020 when these are slated to be available in larger quantities to a wider public beyond IndieGoGo and Kickstarter. In the meantime, before these get too big—the smart toy space is expected to grow by 200 percent by 2023—they could also make a unique canvas for brands seeking to elevate their swag game.
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