Thursday 23 January 2020

Missing your pet? PlayDate smart toy lets you play with it remotely


Daniel Anderson

A new smart connected toy called the PlayDate can be used to interact with your pet from afar, keeping them from being lonely

All pet owners have felt guilty for leaving their furry friends behind at some point and a new smart toy could help to make you both feel better.

PlayDate is a ball with some serious smarts inside. Using Wi-Fi and a mobile app, you can connect to it and make it roll around to play with your dog at home. There's a wide angle camera inside to see what they're up to, as well as a microphone and speaker so you can communicate. Oh and it can also make a squeaking noise, obviously!

The device is currently up for funding on Indiegogo and here's the pitch video.

The prototype already looks like loads of fun, and the developers have included a slit in the design which allows for ribbons to be attached - because cats go crazy for ribbons! The app allows for full control and even lets you snap a photo of your animal being extra super cute so you can show your co-workers - who will presumably be curious when you start making all sorts of noises to your phone.

It sounds like a great idea for pet owners and you can help make it a reality through the Indiegogo campaign here. They're looking for $60,000 initially to get started with production and they're already a third there with a month left to run. If successful (and it almost certainly will be) the first orders will go out around Christmas 2016. Right now you can get one for $129, with options for a 3 or 4 inch version.

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