Blobo – wireless gaming in the palm of your hand

Happy Monday all! I wanted to tell you about another piece of tech we saw at The Gadget Show Live today, a rather cool games controller.

I think the Wii changed the face of gaming with its wireless accelerometer-based controller. Suddenly video games became much more accessible and the Wii rocketed into popularity. If there’s one downside, though, its that the controller is a bit large for some games – like if you’re meant to have it in your pocket while running in Wii Fit.

Blobo is a ping pong sized ball, packed with accelerometers and a squeezy button. It connects to a PC via bluetooth (you may need a bluetooth dongle). Games available for the Blobo include basketball (throw the Blobo up, put a bit of spin on it, and try to score a basket), running (with the Blobo in your pocket) and archery (I can’t remember for the life of me how you control that!) The guys on the stand also said there are other games out, more in development, and each game only costs a few Pounds! Happy days!

Playing with the Blobo was a strange experience, but great fun. Throwing a tiny ball – which you have to catch again, by the way – made sense as a way to throw the basketball on-screen too. I couldn’t quite work out the relationship between how hard I threw the Blobo and how hard the basketball was thrown, but I think I would get that in time. I also put a bit too much spin on the Blobo, so it got confused but, again, that’s my lack of experience more than anything else.

I know these demonstration stands are designed to show the product in the best light, but I was genuinely impressed with the Blobo as a gaming device. One downside is that it requires bluetooth, but there’s a dongle for sale on the Blobo website for a fiver. Another is that it connects to the PC, so if you want to play on the family telly you’ll need to hook up the PC or laptop. Apparently it can also connect to Nokia S60 phones, but that wasn’t being demonstrated on the day. The tiny form factor and cheap games, though, make this well worth a look – even if just for a toy to take away on holiday with you.

Blobo costs £69.99 and is available from http://www.blobo.co.uk.

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