Anki Drive was developed by Boris Sofman, Mark Palatucci and Hanns Tappeiner, three doctorate-level robotics students from Carnegie Mellon University, and features “intelligent” slot cars controlled by iOS devices via Bluetooth connectivity.
The technology was demoed during the last Apple’s Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) and the game is now ready for actual delivery.
The four slot cars were designed specifically for the game by reknowed concept designer Harald Belker, who designed vehicles for many blockbuster movies such as “Minority Report” and “Tron: Legacy” – you check our past exclusive interview here. You can see an interesting overview of the design process in the video below.
The game consists of a 102-inches by 42-inches mat vinyl surface, two cars (plus two additional ones sold separately) and an iOS app which embeds the A.I. technology.
The cars can race autonomously, however the users can control them by tilting the phone to make wider or sharper turns and by activating special features such as tractor beams and guns to slowdown the opponents.
These upgrades are permanent, and the cars can be used in AI mode, which links the physical product to the typical features of videogames.
Anki Drive will be sold through the official website from October 23, 2013 with a starting price of $199.
For more information read the in-depth article on Engadget.