Mattel Goes Digital with New “Hot Wheels id”
Mattel continues to reinvent its products to cater to modern fans, as evidenced by its newest offering: Hot Wheels id. It uses NFC technology so users can track each car’s race time and speed via their smartphone.
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How the NFC tech works
The Hot Wheels id cars look like the old-fashioned die-cast models, at first glance. However, each one carries a tiny NFC chip built into the undercarriage. The racing tracks also have an NFC reader which monitors the race times and speeds of each car as it passes by. Per Engadget, the reader then sends this data to the new ID app available for Android and iOS via Bluetooth LE. So, users now have a way to justify their claims that their car won a given race.
The virtual component
The ID app does more than just collect racing data, however. It adds a virtual layer of fun to enhance the Hot Wheels racing experience. Per Engadget, the app gives you certain challenges to complete. Once completed, you can claim rewards like power-ups that you can use in your next tangible race.
The app also features a game that you can use to race virtual copies of your Hot Wheels collection. If you win enough challenges, you can unlock exclusive in-game content like new virtual models to race.
As of now, Hot Wheels id provides users with eight vehicles to choose from. Though, Mattel will eventually give users a selection of 51 different cars, as Engadget relates.
Each NFC-enabled car costs $7 and the race portal costs $40. The entire Smart Track set costs $180. This includes a total of 10 cars, the track, and a durable box to store your fleet in.
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