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Sphero Makes Augmented Reality Technology Available to Developers

BOULDER, Colo. and SAN FRANCISCO, March 25, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Orbotix, the masterminds behind Sphero, the first robotic ball and gaming system controlled by smartphones and tablets, today announced new ways for developers to tap the potential of Sphero and offer even more mind-blowing ways for consumers to enjoy the gaming system using their augmented reality technology.

Along with a new Sphero Augmented Reality SDK available today on Github, Orbotix has created a new Sphero Augmented Reality plug-in for Unity, a flexible development platform used to make intelligent, interactive 3D and 2D content. Now, developers can simply insert their 3D models and create games around them – all using Sphero as the moving fiducial. The plug-in provides vision detection by automatically coordinating the camera and ball position, distance, orientation and more. The plug-in forms a bridge between Unity and Sphero's native Android and iOS SDKs. Designed for iOS, with an update that will include Android coming soon, this is the first Unity plug-in that allows developers to create augmented reality apps for physical devices.

"Until now, there hasn't been a simple way for developers to experiment in augmented reality, especially for gameplay," said Adam Wilson, co-founder and chief software architect of Orbotix. "We're constantly looking for ways to break the boundaries and redefine gaming. By making Sphero easily accessible on virtually all development platforms, we hope to inspire a new class of creative game developers and designers to build games that truly merge the physical and virtual worlds."

"Right now is the perfect time for augmented reality to gain new momentum because hardware finally has the needed sophistication of built-in cameras," said Orbotix Co-founder and Chief Technology Officer Ian Bernstein. "Interest from developers and companies in augmented reality is growing, and we're excited to make this technology more attainable for everyone."

To further incentivize developers, Orbotix announced a new Sphero App Bounty program. Developers are invited to create new apps for Sphero within selected genres. A complete list can be found on the Sphero Developer site at http://developer.gosphero.com/bounties. "If the app meets the pre-determined requirements, the developer gets paid. Simple as that," said Ross Ingram, head of developer relations for Orbotix. "It's a fun way for developers to build cool games."

The Unity and Orbotix teams will showcase their technology at the Game Developers Conference in the South Hall, booth #1002.

For more information about Sphero, please visit: http://gosphero.com

To learn more about Sphero for developers, please visit: http://developer.gosphero.com

To view Sphero's press kit, please visit: http://gosphero.com/company/presskit

To view Sphero's current app catalog, please visit: http://gosphero.com/apps

About Orbotix:

When technologies combine in new, exciting ways, amazing things can happen. At Orbotix our goal is to continue to blend the real and virtual worlds to expand the boundaries of what we expect from technology. With our smart robots and innovative software we're exploring and defining mixed-reality gaming – the next evolution of entertainment. Founded by passionate robotic engineers, and based in Boulder Colorado, the Orbotix team takes fun very seriously.

Contact

Chuck Lepley
info@orbotix.com

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[Image] Sphero logo r
[Image] Sphero
[Image] Sphero's The Rolling Dead

Source: Orbotix