Maria F. Borges
Import Trade Coordinator
Hasbro, Inc.
1027 Newport Avenue
Pawtucket, RI 02861

RE: The tariff classification of an electronic learning system and a separately imported booster pack from China

Dear Ms. Borges:

In your letter dated April 15, 2010, you requested a tariff classification ruling.

The two items concerned are the “Alphie with Booster Pack & Carry Case” and the “Alphie Booster Pack.”

The first item is referred to as the “Alphie with Booster Pack and Carry case.” This set is comprised of an electronic learning device with 30 double-sided learning/teaching cards, a booster pack which contains an additional 25 double-sided learning/teaching cards and a media cartridge that works with those specific cards, and a fitted backpack style carrying case which is specifically made for the device. All components of this set will be packaged together for retail sale.

The “Alphie” is a portable, battery operated electronic learning device that is in the shape of a robot. Its housing is made of plastic and measures approximately 11 inches in height by 8 ¾ inches in width. The housing incorporates a plastic handle on top of the robot’s head and a card storage slot on its back. Located on the front of the robot is an LCD screen that measures approximately 1 ½ inches by 2 ½ inches, 8 selection buttons that light up, a card reader slot for the double-sided cards and a port for a media cartridge. There is a battery compartment located on the bottom of the robot. The system operates on 3 “AA” batteries. The “Alphie” comes with a preinstalled program that works with the 30 double-sided cards included in this set.

The “Alphie” uses animated graphics, sounds and various activities to teach children letters, phonics, vocabulary, numbers, colors, sounds and shapes. The learning/teaching cards are bar coded picture cards that are placed one at a time into the card reader. Once a card is inserted “Alphie” will begin asking various questions which relate to the inserted card. The child answers the questions by selecting one of the 8 selection buttons. The device will then provide responses to the child regarding the answer supplied.

This set also includes a booster pack. The booster pack consists of a plastic storage case that contains a media cartridge and an additional 25, double-sided, learning/teaching cards. The media cartridge contains the data that allows “Alphie” to work with the additional cards.

Lastly, this set includes a vinyl, backpack style, carrying case which is specifically designed to hold “Alphie”. The bag has an opening on the top so that “Alphie’s” handle can extend out, which allows the user to carry “Alphie” while in the bag. Located on each side of the carrying case are pockets used to hold additional booster packs.

The second item concerned is the individual “Alphie Booster Pack”. This set is a plastic storage case that contains 25 double-sided learning/teaching cards and a media cartridge. The media cartridge is a semiconductor device that contains “masked” memory (32 Mb ROM). The data stored on the media cartridge identifies the cards for the “Alphie” and enables “Alphie” to work with the new set of cards. The essential character of this set is imparted by the semiconductor media.

In use, the user would insert the cartridge into “Alphie’s” media port. Next, one of the 25 corresponding cards would then be inserted into the card reader slot. As described above, “Alphie” would then initiate a question and answer session regarding the inserted card. The booster pack covers 6 educational topics which include letters, numbers, colors, sounds, shapes and matching.

The applicable subheading for the “Alphie with Booster Pack & Carry Case” will be 8543.70.9650, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Electrical machines and apparatus…: Other machines and apparatus: Other: Other: Other: Other.” The rate of duty will be 2.6%.

The applicable subheading for the Alphie Booster Pack when imported separately will be 8523.59.0000, Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States (HTSUS), which provides for “Semiconductor media: Other.” The rate of duty will be Free. Duty rates are provided for your convenience and are subject to change. The text of the most recent HTSUS and the accompanying duty rates are provided on World Wide Web at

This ruling is being issued under the provisions of Part 177 of the Customs Regulations (19 C.F.R. 177).

A copy of the ruling or the control number indicated above should be provided with the entry documents filed at the time this merchandise is imported. If you have any questions regarding subheading 8523.59.000, please contact National Import Specialist Lisa Cariello at (646) 733-3014. For any other questions please contact Steven Pollichino at (646) 733-3008.


Robert B. Swierupski
National Commodity Specialist Division