Review: DeskPets Tankbot

TankBot, the toy with a three-way personality. TankBot can navigate mazes and avoid obstacles, features a random personality mode and is fully controllable through your Apple® or Android™ devices. Each individual TankBot colour has a different frequency, allowing you and your friends to have multiple robots racing, battling, and exploring.

Product description:

TankBot is the world’s first micro robotic tank that you can control with your Smartphone. Through a free downloadable app and a SmartPhone adapter (included), which plugs into your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod touch® or Android™ Device and choose from three different play modes. With a built-in battery and USB flip down charger, battery costs are minimized giving you and TankBot hours of inexpensive playtime and fun!

- For Ages 8 and Up
- Tankbots are available in four different colors (Grey,Blue,Orange,and Green)
- Your desk needs a maze-navigating tank robot
- Advanced optical navigation technology means it steers around obstacles
- Features light-up eyes and robot sounds
- Three modes: touchless navigation, autonomous personality mode, smartphone control
- Compatible with iOS devices and Android devices (2.1 and up)
- Download the free app from the App Store or Android Market
- Insert the DeskPet Universal Remote into your headphone jack to control your TankBot
- Integrated USB flip out connector to recharge using your computer
- Automatic shut-off after 3 minutes of inactivity to conserve battery life
- Batteries: Internal rechargeable battery (40 minutes charge for 15 minutes play time)

How to use:
Press the button for two seconds to turn it on, then press again to change between the three modes:
  1. Obstacle Avoidance Mode – uses sensors to avoid barriers in front of it over a couple inches tall. In this mode it can run mazes, etc. It does not, however, sense drop-offs or things in front if it that can flip it over.
  2. Autonomous Personality Mode – it runs around flashing the lights and making noises. When it gets stuck, it usually either snores or cries.
  3. Smartphone Control – uses a dongle in the earphone jack and a downloaded free app to control the unit. The controller uses two simple sliders to control each track independently. Note that the receivers are in the front of the unit so it does not respond as well when controlled from behind.
It does the cries and so on in all modes, which rather detracts from imagining it is a Mars Rover or spy device – a ‘noises off’ switch would be nice. The unit is also a bit top-heavy, with a very small wheelbase and a very steep angle in the front treads, so it really does not take much to make it flip over. It is definitely not designed as an ‘all-terrain’ device.  In ‘remote control’ mode, I find I have to reset the connection pretty much every time, but that may be something I am doing wrong somehow (possibly forgetting to turn off the dongle!)

Thanks for sending us this cute little gadget! :)

Buy here.

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