A Video Review of BB-8 By Sphero, Should You Buy BB-8?TECH
A Video Review of BB-8 By Sphero, Should You Buy BB-8?
Although this is going to lead to a video review of the BB-8 robot toy by Sphero, we’ll also give you a smaller review here in text below in case you have questions that the video doesn’t cover. The video is eight minutes long, we made it a little lengthy so that you can truly see how it works before spending $150 on it.
BB-8 is an adorable android, anyone in love with Star Wars will likely be in love with BB-8. This makes this toy a very hot topic lately. After seeing Star Wars VII: The Force Awakens, I too wanted a BB-8 replica. I found this small version on Amazon and even after reading a few disappointing reviews, I ordered it. I did so because I wanted to find out the facts for myself and then record them and share them with our readers as many have also mentioned to us that they’re interested in purchasing him.
“Him,” as I say, is the BB-8 made by Sphero. He is approximately the size of a baseball or an orange with a small walnut sized head. The video is here for you to watch and I list both pros and cons throughout as well as at the end. I will list a few below for you as well now.
BB8 Video Review:
Here’s the answer to some of the most common questions, concerns, and issues I saw asked on Amazon about Sphero’s BB-8 Droid and in their reviews:
What surfaces can BB-8 move on?
The BB-8 robot toy does very well on flat surfaces like hardwood, tile and vinyl flooring. He does not do well on carpet. If he has a full charge he can move for a few minutes on carpet, but it’s with difficulty.
It takes about 2-3 hours to get this toy charged, and it’s through a USB cable. You sit him in a small charging cradle and wait. Once charged he will run for about 20 minutes. On carpet, much less.
You control and connect to BB-8 through your smartphone and an app made by Sphero. The app at times loses bluetooth connection or cannot connect to the toy. This can happen randomly, but it happens most frequently when his battery is low.
BB-8 tends to lose his head easily. Fortunately, it’s easy to reattach as it has a magnet in it. It doesn’t appear to get damaged when it falls off.
The app is used to control the robot BB-8, and it has some nice functions, but it’s lacking some as well. One that would be nice is a battery strength indicator so you know when he’s needing a recharge. He will blink some as well as he’s dying, but an indicator would be nice. The app allows you to Drive him, use preset features in Drive to let him do his own thing, and there’s also Patrol, where he moves around the room as if he’s on patrol duty but he’s really not seeming to do anything as he repeats the path over and over. There’s also the ability to control him with your voice, but I had no success with this.
This is a big issue with me, the hologram messaging shown in the original sales video made by Sphero on Amazon. It shows (and on box) and describes this toy as being able to send messages to others in the home, even shows the toy rolling up to a white wall and displaying a preset video hologram or one you create yourself. After playing with it and attempting to figure out why it isn’t shining anything on my wall and instead only showing it on my iPhone screen, I did a Google search and found that it doesn’t send any video out at all from the droid as it has no camera. For so much money you think even a cheap camera could be placed in it.
Who doesn’t love this droid’s noises? Like R2-D2 it’s one of the things you most love about him. As you’ll find in our video though, this BB-8 makes no sounds. He’s silent. Sounds come from your phone and not the device itself. Again, for the money, sound should be in it.
The BB8 droid toy does flow and move easily on a solid surface. It’s fun to move, fun to play with, I do give it that. Is it fun for a long time play? I would think playing with it for a few days would be about enough for anyone of any age since it really does nothing other than spin around. He doesn’t light up except when charging, set up or battery is dying, and so he becomes a bit boring.
Who Would Buy The BB-8 Droid?
I will say my cats were at least somewhat entertained by this robot for the first day or so, after that they lost interest. I would guess children would have the same feeling. I believe the only people that may like this item would be hard core Star Wars collectors. Even at the high price, they’ll probably still enjoy having it in their showcase and it is packaged very nicely so it will sit nicely on a shelf somewhere.
All in all, I really do love the little toy, but for the price I won’t be keeping him. If he were around $25, yes, I would have him as a bit of a spendy cat toy or maybe even to save in case he became worth something one day, but at his price now, he’s simply not worth it. All he can do is spin around, although he does spin elegantly, it’s just spinning and moving about. I found an RC car for my cat that’s $6 and it flashes headlights, makes sounds and runs super fast across our floors and find it much more entertaining than this little toy robot. I say that with sadness, as I really had great hope for this toy droid. Let’s hope that soon someone, Sphero or another company, comes out with a more interactive and entertaining BB-8 in the future and that the price they ask will be in line with the product you receive.
If you got this toy, what do you think of it?