Generally, people's understanding of toys tends to be limited to thinking about children. They are regarded as tools that can help youngsters develop observation, concentration, and spatial and logical thinking. But in recent years, toys designed for the aged have grown into a blue ocean market.
The current senior toy marketplace contains products that range from dolls or robots that provide companionship to those increasing cognitive skills and facilitating communication. Puzzles, blocks and similar toys are also beneficial to their mental and physical health.
China's senior population is expected to reach 300 million in five years, which means the country will transition to a moderately aging society. With the demographic change, demands for toys for the elderly have great potential. However, compared to developed countries, the market of toys designed for the aged still needs to explore more opportunities.
Besides enterprises enhancing the development of targeted products, the government's support and guidance are important. Adapting to the market rule, the government should include designing toys for the aged into the industry's development, as well as make regulations about financial support and industrial standards. The government and the market should jointly optimize the toy market for the elderly, creating more choices for them.
This is an edited excerpt of an article originally published in Economic Daily on November 23
(Print Edition Title: Toys for Seniors)