Everyone’s favorite smartphone-controlled robotic ball got a minor facelift when we saw it last, but it may need just a bit more polish before it officially gets pushed out the door. That’s why Orbotix has quietly put out a call for private beta testers to play with the Sphero ahead of its launch later this year.
Of course, not just anyone will get their hands on a Sphero of their very own: Orbotix will only choose from US-based applicants who have already reserved a Sphero.
Those chosen few should also be willing to play with the thing on pretty consistent basis (Orbotix suggests a few minutes every day) to see how well it holds up to real world use. Beta testers will be able to spend a month with a near-final Sphero, but fret not in case you aren’t chosen: Orbotix is looking at adding new users on a rolling basis between October and November.
While it’s a great way to reward those who already pre-ordered, Orbotix seems to be cutting it just a little close with their timing. By the time their beta program finishes, the holiday launch window will be right on top of them. It won’t pose much of a problem if the feedback is unanimously good, but Orbotix could be caught in a dicey position if something unfortunate is unearthed during their pre-holiday trial period.