The Smart Cycle for preschoolers: clever idea or too much?

The Smart Cycle in action.
The Smart Cycle in action.  Photo: Fisher-Price

It's a brand that's synonymous with long-lasting, educational and fun toys for babies, toddlers and preschoolers.

But Fisher-Price has raised eyebrows around the world with its latest offering: the Think & Learn Smart Cycle.

The toy is a a stationary bike with a tablet holder attached, and the idea is to get kids cycling while playing and interacting with the tablet or a TV via four educational apps.

Each of the apps cost $5, though one – 'Smart Cycle Mission to Tech City' – comes free with the bike.

Acording to Natt Guran from The Verge, to play 'Mission to Tech City' kids pedal forward and backwards, using the handle bar to steer.

"The goal of the game is to pick up alphabets in the correct order; each letter picked up teaches kids a new word. At the end of the round, kids can look at the words they've learned and unlock new characters and vehicles," wrote Guran.

The bike will cost around US$150 (AU$204) and will be available in June 2017.

The company claims that preschoolers watch around 19 hours of video content a week, and spend roughly 20 per cent of their playtime using electronic devices, so the creators hope the bike will combine this love of video and devices with a bit of healthy exercise.

Opinion on the bike seems to be divided, with some applauding the idea.

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"Great idea to burn off energy during winter and rainy days!" one mum commented on Facebook.

"If they're going to be on a gadget, they might as well get some exercise doing it," wrote another.

Others think it's as ridiculous as the much-criticised iPotty or the Fisher-Price iPad Apptivity seat for babies and toddlers.

"Can we just have kids ride real bikes, outside, instead of inside and attached to a screen?" read one typical comment.

So what do you think? Vote in the poll and comment below to have your say.

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