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macrumors bot
Original poster
Apr 12, 2001


Orbotix was at CES showing prototypes of their robotic ball that is controllable through your iPhone or iPod Touch. The product is called Sphero and is still about 6 months away from market. The baseball-sized device connects to your iPhone via Bluetooth with a free downloadable app. On the CES show floor they had an area set up to test out the early models.

Orbotix sees Sphero as a development platform and expects that 3rd party developers will be able to create interesting new games and apps around the system. The company is working on an API to open up to developers for both iPhone and iOS. Developers could come up with games for use with one or more Spheros. Examples include soccer, bowling, or a king of the hill game. The Sphero controls took some getting used to, and also includes a short "boost" mode that gives an extra burst of speed (at the expense of controllability). Sphero is expected to hit the market in late 2011 for a price under $100. A few free games are likely to be available for the device at launch, while 3rd party game pricing will depend on those developers.

Article Link: CES 2011: Sphero Robotic Ball Controlled from iPhone
Last edited by a moderator:


macrumors 68000
Jan 11, 2010
Where is the person who told me I had no clue what the CES is about when I posted it interesting that there are so many products geared toward Apple devices at the XES when Apple isn't attending?


macrumors 68040
Jan 11, 2008
Happy Fun Ball
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    [*]slurred speech
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    [*]heart palpitations​
  • If Happy Fun Ball begins to smoke, get away immediately. Seek shelter and cover head.
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Sep 12, 2010
Controls look terrible though... so non intuitive... what's with the weird rotating on that circle to get the ball to turn? Why not just have the ball roll in the direction you move your finger like with any and all of the duel stick shooters out there for the iphone?

Or better yet, why not just use the accelerometer?

I hope they get these quirks figured out because there's a lot of potential here!


macrumors 65816
Nov 5, 2010
Hey can I control dice with this?
Does me no good anyway since I dont know how to play craps


macrumors regular
Dec 1, 2009
What's that?
A ball which rolls?

Wow, I've never seen anything like this before...Stupidest thing ever.


macrumors 68040
Jun 22, 2006
The thick of it
Controls look terrible though.

I was intrigued by the very last thing the guy said -- that they were working on a sort of augmented reality version that simply displayed crosshairs on the iPhone screen, laid on top of your camera's view. You just moved your iPhone in the air and the ball would follow the position of the crosshairs.

Now THAT would be awesome!


macrumors 68020
Jun 4, 2009
Well that is neat.

It reminds me of when James Bond drove his car with his cell phone in Tomorrow Never Dies
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