The smartphone is being considered for induction into the National Toy Hall of Fame this year in recognition of its impact on how people play and interact.
The other finalists announced Wednesday are: Care Bears, the coloring book, Fisher-Price Corn Popper, Jenga, Magic the Gathering, Masters of the Universe, Matchbox cars, My Little Pony, Nerf Blaster, Risk, and the top.
The smartphone earned a place among the 12 finalists because of its status as a platform for countless mobile games and playful interactions, including sending GIFs and altering photos, hall of fame officials said.
The winners will be inducted Nov. 7. Last year's honorees were the Magic 8 Ball, pinball and Uno.
“These 12 toys represent the wide scope of play – from the simple, traditional spinning top that has been played with since pre-history to the ultra-modern smartphone which has dramatically changed how people of all ages play and connect,” said Christopher Bensch, vice president for collections.
Anyone can nominate a toy for consideration by the hall of fame, located inside The Strong museum in Rochester. The winners are selected with input from historians, educators and other experts.
To make it into the hall, toys have to be innovative, widely recognized, shown to be more than a passing fad and foster learning, creativity or discovery through play.
Sixty-eight toys currently occupy the National Toy Hall of Fame.
Hayek on posting
Salma Hayek says she refrains from using social media to comment on problems in her native Mexico because she wants to protect the country's image.
During an appearance Tuesday to promote her Netflix series “Monarca” on a family's tequila empire, the actress was asked why she doesn't use her social media presence to draw more attention to Mexico's ills.
Hayek said she doesn't believe a post on her Instagram account can change things because most of her followers don't live in Mexico.
At the same time, she added, a critical post puts negative attention on Mexico elsewhere in the world, and “that can affect us with tourism, with people who are trying to invest in Mexico.” She said she doesn't want to hurt her country.
Among celebrity birthdays today: Actor Ian Holm is 88. Actress Linda Gray is 79. Singer Maria Muldaur is 77. Actor Joe Pantoliano is 68. Actor Peter Scolari is 64. Actress Rachel Ward is 62. Actress Amy Yasbeck is 57. Bassist Norwood Fisher is 54. Actor Darren E. Burrows is 53. Singer Ben Folds is 53. Comedian Louis C.K. is 52. Guitarist Larry LaLonde is 51. Actor Will Chase is 49. Singer Jennifer Nettles is 45. Rapper 2 Chainz is 42. Actress Kelly Jenrette is 41. Actor Ben McKenzie is 41. Singer Ruben Studdard is 41. Singer-actress Jennifer Hudson is 38. Actress Alfie Allen is 33. Actress Emmy Rossum is 33. Singer Kelsea Ballerini is 26. Actor Colin Ford is 23.