Sphero Announces iPhone-Controlled BB-8 Droid From 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens'

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Sphero, the company responsible for creating robotic balls that can be controlled by iPhones, today announced a remote-controlled BB-8, a droid from the upcoming film "Star Wars: The Force Awakens."


While BB-8 can be controlled with an iPhone, it also comes with a patrol mode that allows the droid to roam around by himself. Users can also design their own routes and have BB-8 follow them. Additionally, Sphero says BB-8 has an "adaptive personality" and his "attitude" and actions will evolve the more a user interacts with him. BB-8 can also receive voice commands via the app, which means that a user can say "move forward" and BB-8 will move forward.

While Sphero developed this version of BB-8 as a connected toy, the company was instrumental in the development of the BB-8 droid used in the actual movie. The company was a part of Disney's accelerator program and was paired with Disney CEO Bob Iger as its mentor. When Iger visited with Sphero to see the robotic ball they were working on, he realized the technology could be used for BB-8, who at the time was still being designed. He connected Sphero to the filmmakers and special effects people behind the film and they collaborated on the real BB-8, which was shown off at the Star Wars Celebration convention in May.

The toy version of BB-8 will go on sale on September 4, 2015 as a part of "Force Friday," which is when toys and merchandise from "The Force Awakens" officially go on sale. BB-8 will be available for $149.99 at Sphero.com and Apple Stores.

Tags: Sphero, BB-8

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
62 months ago
"This is the droid you are looking for."

Nailed it.
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
62 months ago
BB-8 is a work of genius. The sounds, the physics and the name.

That's one thing Lucas got right in the old movies. Every single one of the characters has the perfect name. The sounds of the names alone could be the subject of a marketing thesis. The beautifully chosen names for props, weapons and ships too. Boggles the mind.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
62 months ago
If you tell BB-8 "it's a trap", he runs away!
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
62 months ago
Useless toy...

..Where do I buy one?

On second thoughts it probably has a 3 minute battery life and will break after 10 minutes of use.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
62 months ago
All of the sudden, I'm more excited for September 4 than September 9.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
62 months ago
I'm so getting one.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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