Today, Seattle-based company Play Impossible's Gameball, a smart ball that encourages both physical activity and creative problem solving, went on sale exclusively at Apple after previously being available on Amazon and at Target.
If you've never heard of the Gameball, it's essentially a small, soccer-like ball that contains an accelerator, barometer, microcontroller, ultracapacitor, and other super cool tech. As you play with it, it sends data via Bluetooth to its accompanying iPhone and iPad app in real time. There are also modes that guide you through specific activities, allowing you and your friends to compete in games like Splash (a water balloon toss game) and Jostle (a version of keep-away where you try to keep the ball still while someone else attempts to move it). What's more, Gameball's goal-oriented play goes beyond individual games: the more you play with the it, the more XP you receive, which allows you to level up and earn achievements. There are even "daily missions" that you can complete, motivating you get up and move regularly.
According to a profile of Play Impossible on GeekWire, the startup has received an additional $1.25 million from investors as of this morning, and has also inked a partnership with the NFL Players Association (NFLPA). New York Jets offensive tackle Kelvin Beachum shared his enthusiasm for the Gameball in a statement:
As a professional athlete and a father, Play Impossible and Gameball is an exciting game option that connects kids' passion for tech with the amazing benefits of physical activity — the one-of-a-kind game system combines learning, having fun and staying healthy.
Braxton Miller, Houston Texans wide receiver and new ambassador for Play Impossible, touted the benefits of Gameball's physical activity and technology combo as well.
Bringing in pro football players is just going to raise the experience to another level and encourage more kids and adults to stay active and take advantage of the powerful combination of sports and tech.
However, Gameball's potential doesn't stop at play. GeekWire's report also states that teachers at middle and high schools are interested in using the ball and its accompanying data as a way to introduce algebra and physics concepts to students in the classroom.
So, itching to get out and play with a Gameball of your own yet? Each ball is priced at $99.95 comes with two AA alkaline batteries, a quick start guide, and a Rapid Charger (which, by the way, readies your ball for an hour of play in a mere 20 seconds). You can grab it up on Apple's website by tapping the link below.
Would you use the Play Impossible Gameball, or are you just fine with your tried and true, non-smart soccer or volleyball? Share in the comments below!
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