Saturday, 7 July 2012

Tech News: The Furbies Return... Wait, what?!

Remember these guys? The overly popular, little furry robots of the late 90s are set for an Autumn/Fall 2012 return, Hasbro announced earlier today.

The original line, released in the 1998-2001 period, saw over 40 million units sold before kids interest quickly darted to the next faze at the time. The new 2012 reboot isn't hugely different to the original although one of the main new features is twin brightly-lit LED eye screens with mechanical eyelids animate with a variety of different expressions and even quirky pictures.


Hasbro have also revealed that there will be a companion app released for iOS devices, which will allow users to control their Furbies via different on screen commands. The app itself works by playing different soundbytes that the Furbies are programmed to respond to.

The Furby's  artificial intelligence have also received a boost resulting in different personalities and characteristics as well as the ability to interact with other nearby Furbies:

The new Furby has a series of nested personalities than can be unlocked over time. Within minutes of using mine, its eyes started blinking, and it transformed into a "valley girl" type of character. Furbies respond to being shaken or turned, and will dance to music. Honestly, it's as unpredictable as a little kid. - CNET 

 The new breed of updated Furbies will retail this Autumn for $60 Stateside, there is currently no word on a UK retail price or release date.

- Ben Carron


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