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147
4.2 out of 5 stars
WowWee Robosapien X Robot Kit
Price:$62.99 + Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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160 of 171 people found the following review helpful
I'm a tech lover. I love tech gadgets, toys, products, books...everything tech, I really enjoy.

Nearly 10 years ago WowWee introduced the first Robosapien. I remember seeing one in a store and thinking about how awesome it looked, and how much fun it would be to have a small walking robot around the house. I never ended up getting one, and I watched as the Robosapien left, to be replaced by the Robosapien V2, then the Roboraptor, and even more products. I never did end up getting one of them, but I still always thought that they'd be a fun toy to have to mess around with.

Well, fast forward nearly 10 years, and what do I see when I'm walking through Toys R Us?? That's right...Robosapien X. There it was, in all of it's original glory...but with another little part in the box that looked as if it should plug into a headphone jack.

I purchased the only one they had on the shelf and went home, to figure out what the Robosapien was all about.

Turns out, that little part that looks like it should plug into a headphone jack is exactly that, a piece that plugs into your smartphone or tablet and runs an app that controls the Robosapien X much like it's standard remote control, but with less programming type features.

The Robosapien X is apparently being released as a bit of a "10 Year Anniversary" type of product, from what I've been able to gather from reading about it. The "X," it would seem then, is the Roman numeral 10 in this instance. The product itself, including the Robosapien and the standard remote are identical to the original Robosapien. I've read that some of the differences in other versions of Robosapien have to do with how long it will run programs for and such, and I've found that the X runs them for the same length of time as the original, so I'm of the mind that this is exactly...literally exactly...the same product that came to market back in 2004. (What I mean by how long it will run programs is the TIME that it will run a type of program before putting itself to sleep)

The small dongle that's included in the package is used to control the Robosapien with your phone or tablet. I've found this to work really well, especially if you are just controlling the Robosapien and not worrying about inputing any actual programs. In fact, for simple control the App control with the dongle is, in my opinion, superior to the remote because you don't have to worry about using the "select" button which functions like a shift key on a keyboard. Basically, with the normal remote each key has three functions, and which function it is using depends on whether or not you've pressed Select, and even how many times you've pressed Select. With the App, you just swipe to the side and quickly get yourself at the second set of commands...no Select required. It works wonderfully for controlling the Robosapien as if it were a remote controlled vehicle.

I do wish that the App had the ability to work with the programming...but as best I can tell, it does not. There is, however, a catch to this. The App has a "record" feature, that will record every button that you press and store it. You can then "play" that recording, and the Robosapien will follow the instructions that you have input into the App. There seems to be no limit to the number of moves that you can record, so theoretically this would allow for limitless programming and endless control of the Robosapien. In practice, though, it's not as solid of a solution for some types of things.

For instance, for dancing...it works great. You can have the Robosapien do whatever you want, then play the recorded routine and set the phone down and it will just keep dancing and dancing...but the thing is, it can always see the IR from the dongle on the phone. However, if you have saved a routine that has him wandering around, if he ever wanders out of the range or view of the IR dongle, then he will just stop doing anything, even though the recording is still running on the phone.

This is in contrast to programming using the remote that he comes with. When using this, things like dance routines are limited in how long they can be by the number of commands that Robosapien can remember. However, you can program him to wander around autonomously, using his various touch sensors to tell him when he's hit something so he can back up and turn around, and this doesn't require any input from any remote, nor does it require being able to constantly "see" the IR from a remote. The limit to this, however, is time. The Robosapien will stop running it's program after five minutes...that can be overcome by a press of a button on the remote from time to time, but it is a limit. I'm not really fond of the five minute limit, as I'd love to be able to just put the Robosapien into a roaming mode and let him wander around to his heart's content, but it's not a really big deal.

The Robosapien does the things that it's supposed to do very well. It walks on low pile carpet and hardwood/tile floors very well. He can get around on thicker carpet, but it's not as quick or as smooth. He also moves his arms around very easily, and will grab and throw the cup that he comes with almost every time, provided you have positioned him correctly to be able to grab it. His dance routines that you can come up with can become pretty intricate, especially when using the App to have endless control. He also makes some sounds that children would probably think are hilarious. The touch sensors on his feet and hands work perfectly, and when programmed to do so can tell the Robosapien to do an action when they are activated. It's fun to command him to wander around, and control his movement, and even more so if you have pets. One of my dogs seems like he's constantly trying to play with the Robosapien, where both of my cats are pretty freaked out by it. Again, for simply controlling the Robosapien, I can't stress enough how much more I enjoy using the App than the remote it comes with. It's just a better option for total control over the little thing.

Once the novelty of controlling the Robosapien X with the App or the remote wears off, it might seem like it's time to put it on the shelf and forget about it. One of the initial problems that some people might have with Robosapien is that after a few short hours, it seems like more of a toy and less of a robot. This, however, can be remedied with some reading and looking around. Once you start to realize how in depth programs can get, even if they are limited by the number of commands, you can still end up with some pretty interesting things, and it does start to seem a bit more like a robot at that point. I found that there are plenty of spots online where you can find different programs to put into the Robosapien, but I also found one resource that has been great.

The Robosapien Companion Tricks Technology

That's a book written a few years back with tips, tricks, programs, and hacks for the original Robosapien. Seeing as the Robosapien X IS just and original Robosapien, I've found that every single piece of information in the book directly pertains to the newest Robosapien. The programs all work, the tips and tricks all work, everything. Not only does the book contain some fun programs and tips for how to come up with your own, it has some information about hacking the Robosapien to make it better, more fun, or just more unique. These range from simple tear down instructions all the way to a detailed instruction set for how to install a wireless camera into the Robsapien that broadcasts it's video to a TV or computer. It also includes some fun information about how Robosapien came to be, and robotics in general. It truly is a good companion to have, and really does kind of make Robosapien into less of a toy and more of an actual robot.

Overall, I'm extremely happy with the Robosapien X. It's everything I hoped it would be...however, there are a couple of drawbacks, none of which I feel detract from the overall score of the product.

First, the IR remote that he comes with can be a bit finicky. I've noticed during programming that sometimes I have to hit buttons a few times for it to register them. Luckily, when programming it makes an audible sound when the command is recognized, so you know when you've missed one.

That IR remote also can be troublesome when using it in bright daylight, even indoors. I didn't notice this AS much with the IR dongle for the App, but it was still present. Robosapien is an indoors kind of guy, so close the curtains and have at it without having to worry about the sunlight messing with any IR.

It's also pretty loud. I wish there were a volume control, so that you could turn the sounds it makes down, or even off. There's no way that anyone is going to want this toy being used at night while they are trying to sleep. It's simply too loud.

Finally, I don't like that every time you turn the Robosapien off, any program you've given him will be erased. This seems to me like something that could have been addressed and updated with this version. I know that back when it was first released they were using very little onboard memory...but it seems to me that this is a missed opportunity with the Robosapien X. There's no reason it shouldn't be able to remember it's programming so that the next time you turn it on, you can just have it start running a program that you worked on before you turned it off.

Even with these few drawbacks, I've found my time with the Robosapien X to be really fun. It's funny, controls well, and uses some basic programming to provide quite a few smiles. I recommend it as a tech gadget, toy, or robot...whaver you fancy calling it!!
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21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2014
Verified Purchase
The only thing that keeps this from being five stars is that you cannot control the hands at all. You can place something on the floor and if It's in the perfect spot the robo will pick it up. Just short of a robotic masterpiece.
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28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
on January 6, 2014
Verified Purchase
My son requested a robot for Christmas, so I was super excited to find this guy. He dances, fights, burps, farts...basically, he's ready to be a boy's best friend. My son adores him.
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
on July 18, 2014
Verified Purchase
Preliminary review (two days in):

Packaging:
You have no hope of re-boxing this for a return. The factory must have spent as much labor in packaging as making the toy. It's one of those packings there every part of the toy has been tied to the cardboard backing by hand. Overall, you have to destroy the packaging to unpack it. Apart from preventing people from unboxing it in a store, I think this is done so that you cannot return it.

Quality:
There were marks--minor visual defects--on the robot and the remote control. Given the above, I am confident that these were from the factory and not because this toy had been returned previously. In other words, this toy looked used, in terms of finish, right out of the box. Again, this all seemed cosmetic, but this is an expensive toy. I've seen better quality control from much cheaper toys.

Robotics and general use:
Remote control use is limited by line of sight. In other words, you (especially kids) need to point the remote quiet close to the robot's face (where sensor is located) to make it move.

I bought the toy for a 6 year-old who was desperate for a remote control robot. When he unwrapped the birthday present, it was like his dream came true. However, play didn't last very long at all. Maybe he will come around to it, but we spent 30 minutes learning the remote and what the robot could do, and that was about it on Day 1. He hasn't learned everything it can do, and he is probably too young or impatient to program it yet, but he played longer with a domino game. Again, I'm skeptical about the value for the money.

I'm sure we will get some more hours of fun out of this toy. Right now, the favorite thing is the "dance" command, and watching the robot boogie to a version of "You Spin Me." However, I think Robosapien will be collecting dust on the shelf before too long.
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on January 27, 2014
Verified Purchase
The robot is fun, has a lot of movement and can be controlled from the included remote control or from the smartphone with the device that connects to the 3.5mm headphone. Uses 4 batteries type "D" batteries and 3 "AAA", which by the way are not included, total fun, ideal for playing with pets as they are very surprised.
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30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on December 13, 2013
Verified Purchase
My 8 year old grandson loves this robot. He tells me that it actually does what it is supposed to do and he and his friends have a lot of fun playing with it. What more does a grandma want to hear?
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on March 31, 2014
Verified Purchase
Great Toy. My 6 years old son get it on his birthday and since than love it. Robot can dance, make some noisy sounds like roar, whistle, give five and so on.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
on January 24, 2014
Verified Purchase
My son loves this robot. I know we all have taken turns trying all the function. This has been an awesome purchase
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19 of 23 people found the following review helpful
on October 27, 2014
This was a terrific toy for 2 months and then it stopped working. Amazon will not exchange it since it is past 30 days, but WowWee is being difficult about honoring the 90 day warranty. The toy was not abused, it simply died from very normal use. I would upgrade the review if the company would honor its warranty.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on March 3, 2014
Verified Purchase
Getting the robot to walk strait is a real challenge. The remote broke after just two weeks of play (not sure why...just stopped working) and I am still fighting w/ customer service to get a return/exchange/repair processed.
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