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Founded Year



Debt | Alive

Total Raised


Last Raised

$3M | 3 yrs ago

About Sphero

Sphero operates as an educational service provider. It offers techniques for transforming K-12 education with accessible tools. It provides curricula like STEAM (STEM + Art) tools for hands-on, standards-aligned PK–12 learning, robot class packs, blueprint class packs, and more. It presents solutions for early elementary, upper elementary, middle school, and more. It was formerly known as Orbotix and GearBox, Inc. It was founded in 2010 and is based in Boulder, Colorado.

Headquarters Location

4772 Walnut Street Suite 206

Boulder, Colorado, 80301,

United States



ESPs containing Sphero

The ESP matrix leverages data and analyst insight to identify and rank leading companies in a given technology landscape.

Healthcare & Life Sciences / Digital Therapeutics & Wellness Tech

The pediatric emotional development robots market aims to improve children's social and emotional skills through interactive robots. These robots use various technologies, such as facial recognition and natural language processing, to interact with children and teach them about emotions, empathy, and social skills. The use of emotional development robots in pediatric settings has shown promising r…

Sphero named as Leader among 6 other companies, including Kinova Robotics, Movia Robotics, and Aido.


Expert Collections containing Sphero

Expert Collections are analyst-curated lists that highlight the companies you need to know in the most important technology spaces.

Sphero is included in 3 Expert Collections, including Robotics.



1,974 items

This collection includes startups developing autonomous ground robots, unmanned aerial vehicles, robotic arms, and underwater drones, among other robotic systems. This collection also includes companies developing operating systems and vision modules for robots.


Conference Exhibitors

6,062 items

Companies that will be exhibiting at CES 2018


Smart Home & Consumer Electronics

1,234 items

This Collection includes companies developing smart home devices, wearables, home electronics, and other consumer electronics.

Sphero Patents

Sphero has filed 92 patents.

The 3 most popular patent topics include:

  • sensors
  • magnetic levitation
  • printed circuit board manufacturing
patents chart

Application Date

Grant Date


Related Topics




Printed circuit board manufacturing, Electronics manufacturing, Computer buses, Electronic engineering, Chip carriers


Application Date


Grant Date



Related Topics

Printed circuit board manufacturing, Electronics manufacturing, Computer buses, Electronic engineering, Chip carriers



Latest Sphero News

Oct 30, 2023

It has been quite the journey, but now is the time to explorenew frontiers. RoadNarrows LLC (“RoadNarrows Robotics”) was a small robotics and intelligent systems company located in Loveland, Colorado. The company developed software platforms using artificial intelligence techniques for advanced robotics research applications, in particular, hybrid robot collaboration and manipulation in semi-unstructured environments. This included vision, 3D sensing, sensor networks, neural networks, genetic algorithms, multi-agent cooperation, and parallel, distributed systems. RoadNarrows sales division had distribution partnerships with several Swiss robotics companies, namely K-Team S.A., makers of the Khepera robot line, GCTronic S.A., manufacturer of the open-source epuck and the elisa robot, and Cyberbotics, creators of Webots software. History RoadNarrows was founded by Robin D. Knight and Kim M. Wheeler in 2002. Ms. Wheeler was the CEO from January 2002 to January 2014. Mr. Knight was the CTO during this period. As of January 2014, Robin Knight performed both the CTO as well as the CEO functions. Kim Wheeler is a graduate from the McGill Centre for Intelligent Machines (M.Sc. EE), and Robin Knight studied applied mathematics and computational systems at University of California, Santa Barbara (M.Sc.). Prior to founding RoadNarrows, both Robin Knight and Kim Wheeler were part of Qualcomm’s CDMA engineering staff. Robin Knight had also worked at Bell Labs, and Kim Wheeler worked on the Mars Observer Camera navigation software with Malin Space Science Systems. RoadNarrows grew to be a small, self-sustaining research and development business generating revenue from sales, contracts, and grants. RoadNarrows partnered with many international robot companies to resell and support high-quality robots and software to the academic and research communities. These relationships and revenue boot-strapped RoadNarrows to develop value-added software and hardware technology to these products, as well as provided funds for the research and development of new products. In 2007, RoadNarrows collaborated with Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) on the National Science Foundation (NSF) Phase I grant “STTR Phase I: General Robot Controller for Legged Mobile Robots with Integrated Open Source Software”. RoadNarrows subsequently was awarded a Phase II grant, for the period March 1, 2009 extended through August 31, 2011. Kim Wheeler was the Principal Investigator (PI) for the project and Robin Knight led the engineering team. Prof. Jerry Weinberg from SIUE was the co-PI, and Kim Wheeler led the research and project management. Team members included engineering intern Ian Bernstein (RoadNarrows’ first employee). Ian Bernstein went on to co-found Sphero in 2010, a robotics startup in Boulder, Colorado. SIUE interns included Ross Mead, who went on to complete a PhD. in robotics at University of Southern California and then founded the robotics startup Semio in Los Angeles in 2016. In 2011, RoadNarrows was awarded a new NSF SBIR Phase I grant for the Development of Computer Cluster Architecture Applied to Intelligent Robotic Manipulators, titled: “Scalable Computer Clusters Applied to Sensing and Control of Intelligent Manipulators for Agile Manufacturing”. Kim Wheeler was the Principal Investigator. RoadNarrows was awarded a Phase I SBIR from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) titled: “An Extensible 6DOF Vision Framework for Accurate Location and Pose Estimation in a Scene Graph Context.” Robin Knight was the Principal Investigator on this effort. RoadNarrows grew to 13 employees in 2013, including a mix of part-time, full-time, and contract staff. Research and development work and intellectual property seeded by the founders, grants, sales, and contracts contributed to further development work with several startup ventures. In addition, RoadNarrows developed several of their own robotics systems products that were sold world-wide to academic institutions. In the fall of 2014, RoadNarrows down-sized their staff and business and focused solely on their Hekateros robotic manipulator and Laelaps product line, while continuing to provide 3rd party robots, sensors, and parts from their distribution partners. RoadNarrows moved their headquarters to Boulder, Colorado from November 2014 through 2016. At the end of 2016, RoadNarrows moved the headquarters back to Loveland, Colorado and provided remote sales and support. At the end of 2020, RoadNarrows officially dissolved the business. Existing academic and startup customers will continue to be supported through 2020 and 2021 in collaboration with partners and suppliers. RoadNarrows’ Manufactured Products RoboSight™ and CogniBoost™ RoboSight™ was developed by RoadNarrows in 2008. It is a small sensor module which includes a simple camera integrated with a CogniMem™ neural network chip for easy training and control applications. It can be used stand-alone or in conjunction with a controlling computer. The CogniMem™ neural network chip was developed by General Vision Inc. of Petaluma, CA. RoadNarrows developed a simple serial command-level embedded API to manage the CogniMem chip functions. CogniBoost™ was developed as a computer peripheral module similar to RoboSight, but with a USB instead of a serial interface, and no camera. Instead, a host computer provides the data input, either from a camera or other types of data sets to feed to/from the CogniMem chip. Both products have full software API tools developed by RoadNarrows. In addition, RoboRealm Inc (founded by Steven Gentner) provided a high-level GUI interface to the two products. RoboSight and CogniBoost are discontinued products and are no longer manufactured by RoadNarrows. SkewlZone™ SkewlZone™ was a family of products to make off-the shelf legged robots “intelligent” for purposes of STEM teaching and research. It was a collaboration between RoadNarrows and Southern Illinois University Edwardsville (SIUE) and partially funded by the National Science Foundation STTR Phase I and II grants. Hardware products included a customized embedded computer board running Linux, smart foot sensors, hands with sensors, a gyroscope/accelerometer board, and sensor interface board. The software architecture and command and control messaging API were developed by RoadNarrows. This software package is named BotSense. The higher level teaching and research applications were developed by SIUE and used the Tekkotsu robotic software platform developed by Carnegie Mellon University. One of the goals of the project was to encourage and promote open source, standard, modular software and hardware environment. Kuon™ and Laelaps™ RoadNarrows designed and manufactured a rugged outdoor wheeled robot with full integration of an embedded computer, sensors, and motor controllers. With Robot Operating System (ROS) now mature and available to the open-source community, RoadNarrows’ evolved their BotSense architecture to include support for ROS, which opened up the access to ROS-supported higher-level applications developed by the community. Laelaps is a miniature version of Kuon, with the same hardware and software infrastructure support. Hekateros™ Hekateros is a 1 meter long robotic manipulator designed and manufactured by RoadNarrows. It was developed as a response to the gap in affordable, capable intelligent research robotic arms. The hardware and software architectures evolved from the SkewlZone project and shared common processing hardware with the Laelaps and Kuon projects, including full ROS support. Hekateros was first introduced to the public during the 2011 Advanced Association of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI) Small-Scale Manipulation Challenge: Robotic Chess held in San Francisco.

Sphero Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • When was Sphero founded?

    Sphero was founded in 2010.

  • Where is Sphero's headquarters?

    Sphero's headquarters is located at 4772 Walnut Street , Boulder.

  • What is Sphero's latest funding round?

    Sphero's latest funding round is Debt.

  • How much did Sphero raise?

    Sphero raised a total of $151.15M.

  • Who are the investors of Sphero?

    Investors of Sphero include Paycheck Protection Program, Foundry, Shea Ventures, Kickstarter, Techstars Ventures and 10 more.

  • Who are Sphero's competitors?

    Competitors of Sphero include Robo Wunderkind, KEYi Tech, Makeblock, Primex Finance, Modular Robotics and 7 more.


Compare Sphero to Competitors

Modular Robotics Logo
Modular Robotics

Modular Robotics designs and builds robot construction kits for kids. It offers robot blocks. The products include GoPiGo Raspberry Pi robot, BrickPi, GiggleBot micro:bit robot, GrovePi, and PivotPi. It was formerly known as Roblocks. It was founded in 2008 and is based in Boulder, Colorado.


Evollve is a company that focuses on educational technology, specifically in the field of robotics and coding. The company offers coding robots and STEAM-based learning solutions, providing hands-on learning experiences for students. These products are designed to help students learn coding and other STEAM subjects in a fun and engaging way. It was founded in 2012 and is based in Redondo Beach, California.

Makeblock Logo

Makeblock is a company that focuses on the development of software and hardware for educational purposes, specifically in the fields of Computer Science and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics). The company offers a range of robot kits and educational resources designed to make coding accessible and engaging for children. These products are primarily targeted towards the education sector, with solutions designed for various age groups, from early childhood to post-secondary institutions. It was founded in 2013 and is based in Shenzhen, Guangdong.

Wonder Workshop Logo
Wonder Workshop

Wonder Workshop develops a platform where children learn robotics, fundamental coding, and other skills. It provides a comprehensive platform that connects educators and students to solve problems and learn new things in an interactive way. The company was formerly known as Play-I. It was founded in 2012 and is based in San Mateo, California.

BiBox Labs Logo
BiBox Labs

BiBox Labs is an education technology company. It offers Bibox Tool, a product that offers a set of hardware and software to educate students on the basic concepts of engineering by making various equipment like robots, vacuum cleaners, and more. It was formerly known as BiBox. It was founded in 2012 and is based in Bengaluru, India.

QtPi Logo

QtPi is a company focused on educational technology, specifically in the domain of robotics and coding. The company offers a robotics kit and a mobile app, designed to foster creativity and analytical thinking in children aged 7 and above by allowing them to build and program their own robots. QtPi primarily serves the educational sector, with a particular emphasis on K12 education. It is based in Bengaluru, India.


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