Anki smartphonecontrolled robotic cars go on sale October 23

first_imgApple likes to have select developers show off their apps at the WWDC event each year, and a few months ago Tim Cook invited the folks from Anki to demo something a little different. Anki is making a line of small robotic cars that are controlled with an iOS app. The demo had a few hiccups, but the technology backing the Anki cars is impressive. After a few months of fine tuning, the Anki Drive kit will go on sale October 23 for $199.For that lofty price you get two cars (or characters as Anki calls them), a charger, and the oval-shaped Anki track, which rolls up when not in use. In addition to the included cars, two more designs will be available for $69 each. If the cars look familiar, that’s because they were designed by the same man who created the Batmobile from the 1996 movie. Each car is a self-contained robot that scans the track 500 times per second and is aware of the location of all the other cars. The user doesn’t directly control the car, but rather issues commands that the car’s AI then tries to carry out.All the interaction happens with the aid of an Anki app running on an iOS device, which connects to the car over Bluetooth 4.0 LE. Players can activate special abilities and use virtual weapons on each other to gain the upper hand. The cars will react to all these variables in real time. Virtual upgrades for the cars can also be purchased in the app that change how the AI behaves and what abilities it has during a race.Anki is working closely with Apple to launch the product, which will be sold in Apple Stores and online through Anki. The robo-cars will only be available in the US and Canada for now.last_img read more

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