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My 5yo niece is always drawing all day long and this makes a perfect companion. This was a toy I seen as a child on TV but never seen in real life or held one, so I can't compare to the old ones. But my neice has washed it about a dozen times sense December and it is still holding up.
It was a birthday gift for a 4-yr-old girl. I've been told she really enjoys it. I decided to get another bear for my own child. He's not letting me wash the bear so far, so I don't know how it holds up in washes, but he sure enjoys drawing on it.