A Survey on Purchase Intention of Hello Barbie in Brazil and Argentina
Children’s toys have become increasingly sophisticated over the years, with a growing shift from simple physical products to toys that engage the digital world by the use of software and hardware. A smart toy, such as Hello Barbie, is defined as a device consisting of a physical toy component that connects to a computing system with online services through networking to enhance the functionality of a traditional toy. Hello Barbie is introduced by Mattel as “the first fashion doll that can have a two-way conversation with girls” with speech recognition and online connection to Cloud computing technologies. While the doll is made by Mattel, the online English conversation software is powered by ToyTalk.com. The targeted players are 7 to 13 years old children. Adding the ability of speech recognition and online connection raises the risk of privacy breaches in children. Since its introduction in February 2015, Hello Barbie has been criticized for the negative effects on children along with privacy concerns in the United States How will consumers in other countries react to this type of smart toys. The main objective of this paper is to present a survey of purchase intention of Hello Barbie in Brazil and Argentina, where consumers still have not been massively presented to this type of smart toy. Our results indicate that Brazilian consumers have better perception and evaluation of the toy and thus higher purchase intention toward the toy than Argentinian consumers do. Such difference is explained by the culture differences between the two countries, such as relatively low vs. high uncertainty avoidance.