Orbotix has spent the last few months hustling, and it shows: they landed a $5 million dollar Series B investment in April, and now they have made it known that fans won’t have to wait much longer to purchase their robotic balls.
That’s right, robotic balls. For the unfamiliar, the Colorado-based company has been hard at work on the Sphero, a small robotic ball that can be controlled via smartphone. The applications for a controllable ball may seem a bit limited, but Orbotix fancies itself as creating a “mixed-reality” experience where games take place both on the phone and in the real world.
The final Sphero production design differs a bit from what we’ve seen in the past, with a slightly different, translucent white chassis replacing the original. Spheros will also ship with a nifty induction charger: just drop the ball in the dock in between rounds of office golf and you’ll be golden.
While the $130 price tag may elevate the Sphero out of “impulse buy” status, the inclusion of an open API means that people can develop new games and applications that take advantage of the Sphero hardware. If the concept of a hackable robo-ball piques your interest, the Sphero is currently up for pre-order, but those of you on the fence can watch our hands-on video from CES and imagine the fun.