There are two kinds of robots: Ones that do work for you, and ones that deliver nothing but fun. The Sphero 2 from Orbotix, launched here at the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, falls firmly in the latter category while offering a slew of upgrades that improve on the original Sphero models.
Unlike Sphero and Sphero 2.0, the 2B comes in a totally tubular shape that helps give it the ability to race around at up to 14 miles per hour (though the company plays down the top speed to around 10 mph) while still maintaining one hour of battery life. The 2B, which can also tumble rather than simply roll, is also completely programmable, like its rounder older brothers, and it supports multiplayer modes for whatever games developers ultimately make for this rugged little robot.
Other features for the Sphero 2B include Bluetooth LE connectivity that allows users to control the device via their Android and iOS devices from up to 30 feet away. It’s made with a polycarbonate construction, comes in either black or white, and can be outfitted with a variety of skins and wheel types suited for different surfaces (like wood floors, carpet, etc). The 2B is even waterproof, which means you won’t have to stop your robot racing just because of a few pesky puddles.
The Orbotix Sphero 2B is set to launch this fall for $100, and you can preorder one here.
Check out a teaser video for the 2B below: