- Programmable with up to forty commands, incredible movement and maneuverability
- Sensory ability limited at times, highly complex control system
Definitely one of the better of WowWee's robots, the Roboquad promises to deliver hours and hours of fun.
Price$ 179.00 (AUD)
The latest in WowWee's range of robots, the Roboquad is one of the better offerings, however one that is still hampered by limitations in the technology. Suitable for all ages, the Roboquad delivers a lot of versatility, and with the right know-how can do some very cool stuff. The flipside to this however is a fairly complicated control system, one which requires a lot of patience and practice to master. For the dedicated, however, it pays off, and in the hands of an expert the Roboquad is an incredibly fun device.
Built on four rotating, jointed legs, the Roboquad has quite a lot of maneuverability. It can rotate itself, it can walk in any of four directions without turning, can move diagonally (slowly) and even perform a semi-intelligent 'escape walk' intended to disengage it from obstacles. By folding its legs inwards it can prop itself up higher, or even ready itself for a 'pounce' type move (which is actually fairly tame). Controlling movement is reasonably basic and intuitive, although the more complicated steps require a little more know-how or manual reference.
The Roboquad's head rests atop a rotating, two-jointed neck, giving him a field of 'vision' that extends to about 180 degrees horizontally and around the same vertically. Its sensors are generally pretty good, in that they pick up any movement or obstacles that come into the field of vision. Nevertheless, this field is still quite small, and unless the Roboquad moves its head, it often can't see a lot of surrounding objects, especially ones at ground level that may entangle its feet.
The Roboquad is reasonably customisable when in its automated mode. It can be set to a guard mode, in which it responds to any noise or movement in its range by flashing lights and making shooting noises. It can also be set to a roaming mode, in which it walks around and explores its environment, avoiding obstacles that it's able to detect. In this mode users can change its aggression, activity, and awareness levels each to one of three presets, tailoring its behaviour. The autonomous modes are for the most part fun and functional, with problems arising every now and then due to the limitations of Roboquad's sensory system.
The real fun, at least in our opinion, lies in the manual mode. It takes a lot of practice to learn the commands and familiarise yourself with the controls, but the rewards are worth it. With its quadruped design, the Roboquad is highly maneuverable and can move around at a fair pace. Steep slopes and highly uneven terrain can pose a problem, but generally a few bumps won't get in its way at all.
The extension of this mode is a very nifty feature - programming. The Roboquad can memorise a program of up to forty commands, playing them back in sequence when instructed, or when disturbed in guard mode. The possibilities of this are endless. Dancing, patrol routes, 'lunge' type attacks, or even just show off routines for friends, there are plenty of ways to take advantage of this feature. Getting the most out of the programming mode does require a pretty solid knowledge of the controls, but as ever, practice makes perfect.
The control system is probably the biggest drawback of the Roboquad. With a fairly minimalist remote control which is built upon a four-layered 'shift' command system (each button has four different functions, depending on the current 'shift' level), controlling the Roboquad quickly and effectively requires a flurry of well timed button presses. Often we found ourselves having to change shift level (one to three button presses) between commands several times in a row, leaving us hitting around thirty buttons to get the robot to perform a simple ten commands. Nevertheless, with enough experience it could become intuitive enough, however we do feel that there is definitely room for improvement, mostly by throwing some more buttons on the remote and toning down the shift system a little. The remote works well otherwise, although its range doesn't extend past about five metres.
Overall, the Roboquad is an impressively designed robot. Although probably too complex for most very young children, it's an attractive gift idea for almost anyone else with even a passing interest in robots. Slightly limited sensory ability and a difficult and multi-layered control system are the only real drawbacks of a device that's otherwise an exceptional product. Coming at a much lower price than previous WowWee robots, we can easily imagine the Quad becoming a winner.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Huawei Mate 9
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Lexar® Portable SSD
Google Daydream VR headset
Acer Swift 7
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Surface Pro 4
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 5 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
Latest News Articles
- IBM's hub for wearables could have you out of the hospital faster
- HoloLens Spectator View makes it easier to show off AR creations
- Lenovo's ThinkPad P71 will work with HTC, Oculus VR headsets
- Google revamps Voice with long overdue makeover, new features
- Mozilla's new corporate logo evokes URL lingo
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSenior .Net Developer with Silverlight proficiencyVIC
- CCContract - System Access Administrator - major Telco in MelbourneVIC
- FTSolutions Software DeveloperVIC
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Supply Chain Modules)VIC
- CCBusiness Project ManagerNSW
- TPFront End DeveloperNSW
- CCDemand/ Resource AnalystVIC
- CCSenior Mobile Application DeveloperNSW
- FTDynamics AX Functional Consultant (Supply Chain Modules)QLD
- FTJava Developer - Fixed Term ContractQLD
- FTDatabase Modelling SpecialistACT
- CCSharepoint Business AnalystACT
- CCData Engineer (SQL/Big Data/Scala)VIC
- FTSenior Technical Consultant - SQLACT
- FTService Desk AnalystNSW
- FTData Conversion LeadNSW
- TPAEM DeveloperNSW
- FTTechnical Support RepresentativeNSW
- CCServiceNOW DeveloperNSW
- CCTechnical Consultant - ITSM/HP Service ManagerNSW
- TPInstructional Designer | DETQLD
- FTInfrastructure Architect (Adelaide Based)VIC
- CCSenior Technical Business Analyst - ITMSP - Melbourne CBDVIC
- CCCA ITCM / ITCA Engineer with some hands-on knowledge of scripting.NSW
- CCService Desk Quality Assurance AnalystNSW