Review: Sphero DARKSIDE


Review: Sphero DARKSIDE

June 24, 2015

Sphero, the industry leader in Connected Toys, known for its emerging technology and latest innovations in robotics. Sphero has recently launched Darkside: an app-enabled robot more devious and defiant than the original Ollie. Darkside rolls at a speed of up to 14 mph and instantly connects to a smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth, with a range of up to 100 feet.Dark Side2

Our family received Ollie to review and I wasn’t sure if our age range of kids would be a fit at first.  This toy has come with us to other peoples houses, on walks, to the park and it will probably make it’s way into a suitcase for our holiday this summer.  My two year old loves to watch it on demo mode – it moves around by itself and he chases it.  My 6.5 year old has the app installed on her iphone (and mine!) and is getting really good at controlling the robot.  The app was very easy to download and the controls on the phone are very user friendly.  There are lots of tricks that you can do and the app lists them all out and how to do them.  She likes having me review a trick and them trying it out for herself.  Great for hand-eye coordination!  Adults also love this toy because of the tricks it can do.  It was a favourite among the dads at a BBQ we were at last weekend.

The Ollie connects with any phone that the app is installed on, simply by opening up the app and then holding the phone closely to the robot. This is the screen you will see.  It just take a few second to connect.



Once it’s connected you can hold your phone vertically for the easier control of the joystick, or turn your phone sideways and both the joystick and the trick pad will show up.


I was surprised by the size.  I originally thought this would be a much larger toy.  Now that we have it, I’m glad it is nice and compact because it is such a fun toy and we are able to take it anywhere with us to keep the kids occupied.  You can see in the photo that it is about the size of my hand.




Darkside lets users customize their robot more than ever by providing two sets of removable tires and hubcaps, along with built-in LED lights with customizable settings. The app controls the robot, letting the player use the joystick to practice tricks, spins, flips, and just about anything.


This is a great gadget – really fun for summer, especially with the outdoor tires you can add.  It works well on hard surfaces, pavement and even thick carpets.  You can actually change the settings depending on the surface you are riding on.

Two thumbs up from our family!


MSRP: $169 CAD

Retail Availability: Best Buy Canada,


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