Thedroidguy team was in attendance at the annual Holiday Spectacular in New York Wednesday night. This is a media event where countless consumer electronics companies show off the highlights for their holiday season. It’s also a great place to get a jump start on our holiday gift guide, and we’re sure the Sphero by Orbotix is on the list.
Sphero is a really cool toy. Much like last years AR Drone by Parrot (which just this year came to Android), it’s a fun toy for big boys and girls. We first saw the Sphero in Las Vegas at CES in January. The Orbotix team was seen everywhere with little white balls in front of them, controlled by iPhone and Android (yup Parrot Orbotix is releasing their control app simultaneously hmmm).
More after the break
The ball has thousands of LED’s inside that make it light up while it’s rolling around on the floor. It’s not aimlessly rolling around though, the user is controlling it via their Android phone. Imagine how much fun this would be with a young child, a cat or a dog, or heck just rolling it around the office.
All of the electronics, including the LED’s and the gaming engine are housed in a durable polycarbonate shell which protects the inner workings of, what so far looks like, the hottest Android related toy of the season.
Orbotix plans on launching the Sphero soon and in time for the holidays. At the same time they plan on launching a variety of games that you use your phone and the ball to play. You’ll be able to race your friends with Sphero Drive, practice your golf with Sphero Golf and outrun your cat with KittyCam. As Orbotix says you’ll be mixing the physical and virtual worlds in “cutting edge mixed reality gaming”.
The Sphero will set you back $129 but this is very reasonable considering the fun and potential this thing has. For developers Orbotix has open API’s. Developer’s can go to the Sphero website and download the API and SDK to develop your own games using Sphero, can anybody say Mouse Trap!
This thing rocks! We’ll let you know as soon as it’s available for purchase and where to get it. We had a great chance to play with it at the Google IO after party. If you want your chance you may want to consider heading to Austin for the Big Android BBQ.