iTikes Canvas Review

CanvasLittle Tikes iTikes Canvas Review

Our rating: 2.5 stars

The Little Tikes iTikes Canvas moves the old erasable doodle boards into the digital age. But does the new technology add anything, or are you just paying more for the same old toy? Read on to find out what other parents thought.

Features

* Magnetic doodle board with stylus.
* Draw with stylus or with fingers.
* Crank-style eraser wipes out pictures.
* Shape stamps print adjustable shapes on the board.
* Advanced features work with any generation iPad.
* Downloadable iPad app.
* Uses 3 AA batteries (not included).
* Age 4+

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Little Tikes iTikes Canvas Review

Canvas boxedThe iTikes Canvas toy looks a lot like a traditional erasable doodle board. You know the ones we mean – like Etch-A-Sketch or MagnaDoodle, where you draw something on the board with a special stylus and then crank the side out to wipe it clear so you can draw something else. You probably had one when you were a child.

So at first glance you might think the iTikes Canvas toy is pretty much like that – it’s just more expensive! That’s not quite true. It does have some other features.

shapesFirst, there are buttons along the side that you can press to get certain shapes onto the board. You can see an example in the picture on the right here. Then you can adjust the size and design of those shapes. This could help a kid who is not great at drawing, to produce something recognizable.

Hook It Up To An iPad

It’s only if you hook it up to an iPad that you get the full range of features. Then you can download an app that includes many more shape and design possibilities as well as a couple of drawing games.

The iTikes Canvas fits over the top of the iPad so the edges of the iPad are protected. However, the child is drawing directly on the iPad screen, so you have to be comfortable with allowing that.

One of the best things about connecting it to an iPad is that the drawings and designs can be saved and emailed to friends or to a computer for printing. This is probably the biggest advantage over a traditional doodle board toy – the child’s precious drawings do not have to be lost forever when they crank the eraser handle.

The Downside

Having to leave the iPad connected is a major disadvantage in our opinion. You can download drawing apps to your iPad without having the iTikes Canvas, so if you’re happy for your child to use your iPad you don’t really need the iTikes Canvas. And without an iPad, it’s just a regular erasable doodle board.

So if you don’t like the idea of your child demanding an iPad to use the advanced features of this toy, you might want to look at the Fisher-Price Classic Doodler instead.

The Verdict

The iTikes Canvas from Little Tikes is a toy that kids will enjoy, especially if they like to draw. If you have a child who is careful with their toys and can be trusted with an iPad (who maybe even has an iPad of their own) this could be great. If not, we think you could find something better.

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Our rating: 2.5 stars

Published December 5th, 2012

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