The folks at iLounge have stumbled upon an intriguing bit of news. It seems that the company Desk Pets, who create tiny robotic toys that are designed to distract you from getting actual work done at the office, are coming out with a new toy called Tankbot that will be controlled using your iOS device of choice. Besides controlling it directly from your device, Tankbot is also equipped with IR sensors that will let it be controlled using hand gestures, or navigate around on its own.
There isn’t currently any video of the device in action, but this render of an early prototype gives you an idea of what Tankbot will be like.
This is along the lines of other iOS controlled toys like the remote control robotic balls GearBox prototyped last summer, or the Parrot AR Drone which we reviewed extensively when it was released. Unlike the $300 AR Drone though, Tankbot should be available for under $20, which is right in my spending sweet spot for cool things that I don’t actually need. The Desk Pets Tankbot will be available in 4 different colors and is expected to launch this June.