This seems like a slam dunk licensing opportunity that the company isn’t even thinking about. Anki has a physical car racing game that is controlled by an app. But this doesn’t use the touch screen so much (at least not for steering) as the motion of iPhone or iPad which is used like a steering wheel. Speed is controlled by moving your thumb on the touch screen.

The app was highlighted by Apple two years ago, just about the time other toy manufacturers were trying apps where you ran the toy vehicle over the actual screen (a scary scenario for most parents).

In a reverse out of the usual set up, where you download the free app and then have in-app purchases to enhance the playing experience, with Anki you buy the physical tracks (a lightweight flexible plastic), special toy cars, and then download the free app to run the whole thing.

So far I’m told there isn’t a plan to license – the company is focusing on distribution of its own Anki Drive sets (about $150), but it’s easy to envision the Thomas version, the NASCAR set, the Batman set.