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Kiri is a screen-free smart toy meant to help kids learn languages and more

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After six months of sheltering in place (and now weeks of hiding from wildfire smoke) alongside a toddler who never seems to run out of energy, I’m the last person who would try to make anyone feel bad for giving their kid some screen time.

But if a company wants to build a toy that aims to educate and entertain without the need for a screen, they’ve at least got my attention.

That’s the concept behind Kiri, a company competing in the (first all virtual!) TechCrunch Disrupt Startup Battlefield this week. They’ve put a spin on the classic wooden block, packing it with smarts to help kids learn things like shapes, animals, and numbers in multiple languages without involving yet another screen.

Kiri is built to work alongside an expandable set of RFID-enabled tiles, with each tile representing a different animal, food, etc. Touch the block to a tile, and a built-in speaker announces what has been tapped.

A “mode” card, meanwhile, lets you switch things up with a quiz game (where kids are prompted to find and tap a tile that Kiri knows you own), or quickly shift between English, Mandarin, and Spanish.

The Kiri block itself is deliberately simple; about 2×2″ of smoothly sanded wood, the only visible externals are a few small holes where the speaker vents, a port for charging, and a translucent, color-shifting Kiri logo. Tap the blue block? The logo turns blue. Got the answer right in quiz mode? Green.

Want to know which words your kid really seems to be getting? A companion app lets parents check in on a kid’s progress (and, of course, order new cards.)

Kiri took its first steps into the world at the end of 2019 with a successfully funded campaign on Kickstarter. They initially intended to ship the first units by April of this year, but the pandemic has thrown a wrench or five in the gears. Kiri’s Nick Porfilio tells me they’re now on track to ship by the holidays.

Kiri’s $99 starter kit comes with the block, a tote bag, and a set of tiles to get you started. The company intends to add more tiles and lesson categories to the mix over time, with an $8 monthly subscription meant to keep things fresh as long as your kid stays interested.

Porfilio also tells me that they’re looking to expand beyond tiles in time, mentioning concepts like Kiri-enabled books and musical instruments. For now, though, they’re focusing on getting their blocks into the hands of those who pre-ordered.

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Charge Your Phone Wirelessly With 50% off a Multifunctional LED Lamp

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Best Tech DealsBest Tech DealsThe best tech deals from around the web, updated daily.

White Wireless Charge Lamp | $18 | Amazon | Clip coupon + code ABC88699
Black Wireless Charger Lamp | $20 | Amazon | Promo code ABC88699

When you’re ready to turn in for the night, you don’t want to forget to charge your phone— especially if your mobile device doubles as your alarm clock.

With this wireless charger lamp, you can make this crucial step of your nightly routine even easier by just setting your phone on the wireless charging pad and… well, that’s all there is to it!

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Other functions include multiple lighting modes as well as a sleep timer option for auto shut-off of the light after 30 or 60 minutes.

This lamp can be yours in white for $18 if you clip the coupon on Amazon (it’s below the original $40 price) and add promo code ABC88699 at checkout.

You can snag the black version for $20 using the same code—no coupon though, sorry.

Don’t sleep on this deal! Who knows how long stock or the coupon code will last?

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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