TTTech's Internet-Controlled 'Cloudrobots' Are Next Wave In Pugilism
You can battle friends across the world with these Internet-enabled robot brusers.
These are not your plastic Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Robots. The Cloudrobot are more like miniature versions of the metallic pugilists in Reel Steel. These sophisticated aluminum alloy robots weigh 5 pounds each and stand 16 inches tall when fully erect — they can stoop, just like real boxers. Cloudrobot's digital servos — the exposed wires will be hidden in the final versions — provide 21 degrees of freedom, which means all manner of punches including jabs, crosses and uppercuts are possible.
The Cloudrobots tussle on their own mirrored, folding platform and remain standing thanks to their electromagnetic booties. At Toy Fair, the Hungarian developers controlled them via standard video game controllers, but when they go on sale later this year you'll use an Android or iOS device via an app that also keeps score based on points, just like a ring-side judge. Their rechargeable lithium ion batteries allow a 20-minute match.
But perhaps the real breakthrough is their cloud component — you'll be able to play another Cloudrobot owner over the Internet. Each player will control his or her robot, and the moves from each player will be mirrored in the other's pair of Cloudrobots located anywhere else in the world. The app displays a representation of the bout.
The Cloudrobots don't move very adroitly on their heavy feet — they seem more like George Foreman than Muhammad Ali — and never seem to land a solid punch, hence the point scoring. However, it doesn't look as if they're anywhere near being finished, either.
No word on price, but they'll likely be pricey — somewhere between $100 and $1,000 for the pair according to TTTech execs — which explains the emphasis on stability and their inability to be knocked down. The company also hopes to develop licensed robots based on movie or comic characters.