Skip to main content

Say hello to Ollie, Sphero’s smartphone-controlled racer that hits 14 MPH

say hello ollie spheros smartphone controlled racer hits 14 mph sphero 1
It’s hard to reinvent something as simple as the ball, but leave it to Sphero to do just that. A few years ago, the robotics toy company created a ball that can be controlled from your smartphone via Bluetooth, and letting you interact with it in unique ways through downloadable apps. Now, the company (formerly known as Orbotix) has evolved that technology into its latest “app-controlled” toy, called Ollie, a tubular shaped remote controlled plaything with wheels that can reach up to 14 miles per hour.

First demonstrated earlier this year at the CES Show in Las Vegas, Ollie (formerly Sphero 2B) is “engineered for high performance and tricks,” Sphero says. Besides racing at high speed (for a toy, at least, which is more than most humans can run), you can make Ollie perform spins, drifts, jumps, and flips. In certain apps, you can get feedback and points based on how gnarly your Ollie’s tricks are. Sphero’s co-founcer, Ian Bernstein, says Ollie takes a nod from skateboarding culture, and would appeal to adrenaline junkies.

Related Videos

Related: Sphero robo-ball, the smart ball you control with your smartphone

Race against your friend's Ollie, or try to knock it out.
Race against your friend’s Ollie, or try to knock it out.

Ollie will be customizable. You can change the tires to give Ollie different driving experiences. A Bluetooth-enabled ramp that interacts with Ollie is in the works. The toy is made with durable plastic that can handle knocks, and pairs instantly with your smartphone using Bluetooth LE (Low Energy) technology. Ollie recharges via USB.

Due out on September 15, Ollie will be available on Sphero’s website for $99, and later in stores. It will come in black and white, and will have four apps available at launch.

Editors' Recommendations

Apple, please release the iPhone 14 in these colors next 
Mockup render of the iPhone 14 in an orange color.

You've probably heard the news by now. Earlier this week, Apple released a new yellow color for the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Plus -- and it's now up for pre-order. Does it look good? I sure think so! It's a bright, vibrant, and saturated yellow that adds a lot of pop to a mostly muted color palette for the iPhone 14 series.

But as much as I like how the yellow looks, it's not the only color I'd love to see the iPhone come in. There are so many possibilities for future iPhone colors, and if Apple's looking for a few tips on what to do next, I have some suggestions. Here are five colors Apple should release the iPhone 14 in next (hopefully soon).
Dark green

Read more
Watch the Galaxy S23 Ultra and iPhone 14 Pro Max face off in brutal drop test
samsung galaxy s23 ultra iphone 14 pro max drop test watch phonebuff

Samsung’s latest flagship, the Galaxy S23 Ultra, is one of the year's best phones. It comes equipped with the powerful new, purpose-build Snapdragon 8 Gen 2 for Galaxy chip, a 200MP main camera, and Corning’s Gorilla Glass Victus 2 on the front and back of the device (which means heavy durability).

But there’s another question — how does Gorilla Glass Victus 2 hold up against Apple’s confidently-named 'Ceramic Shield' on the iPhone 14 Pro Max? YouTuber PhoneBuff did a drop test to find that very answer.

Read more
When is my phone getting Android 14? Here’s everything we know
The Samsung Galaxy S23 Ultra next to the Google Pixel 7 Pro.

Google has released the second developer preview for Android 14, its upcoming smartphone software for Google Pixel devices. This should be the last developer preview before Android 14 moves on to the open beta stage of testing, then a planned public release later in 2023.

With Android 14, there are some priority changes in app behaviors and compatibility instead of just new features and other enhancements. There are also going to be improvements made to settings for privacy, security, and even system health. In short, Android 14 may not be packed with a ton of brand-spanking-new features, but it will refine and streamline what is already there.

Read more