Manufacturer: Physical Apps
Available: May 2012
TheO shows you don’t have to be a big toy company to get into this category. TheO — which is exactly what it looks like, a soft foam ball that securely holds an iPhone or iPod Touch — was developed by a high school photography teacher who got an idea to put an iPhone or iPod in a ball to take advantage of the devices' accelerometer and shuffle functions. When students tossed the ball to each other, the images would shuffle. After the ball was caught, the student could look at the image on the screen and identify it. That’s a lot more fun than sitting in a dark room looking at slides.
But there are other applications, including a bowling game that allows you to roll the ball along the floor while the accelerometer translates the motions into the game.
When the ball becomes available in May, it will come with three apps; additional ones will be available for purchase at the Apple and Android stores.