Sphero + littleBits

Sphero and littleBits are teaming up with the intention of becoming the No. 1 STEAM and coding solution for educators, kids, and families.

Known for its educational robotics and STEM products, Sphero has been a dominant player in the educational tech space, while littleBits pioneered electronic building blocks. By acquiring littleBits, the Sphero portfolio will hold more than 140 patents in robotics, electronics, software, and the Internet of Things (IoT). For nearly a decade, both Sphero and littleBits have created new categories of learning tools, with their combined efforts reaching more than six million students in the classrooms of 65,000 teachers across 35,000 schools around the globe.

“Sphero and littleBits are on a mission to make hands-on learning fun and memorable,” says Paul Berberian, Sphero’s CEO. “Together, we’re able to make an even greater impact by delivering the best possible solution — whether it is programming a robot to solve a maze or building an electronic music synthesizer. There are infinite learning possibilities — and they’re all fun.”

“When I studied engineering, it was top-down, test-based,” says Ayah Bdeir, founder of littleBits, who is departing the company following the acquisition. “I hated it and wanted to quit every semester. Then I got exposed to the pedagogy of learning through play and my life changed; no one could peel me away from learning, inventing, creating. Together, littleBits and Sphero are now bringing this experience to kids everywhere.”

Both companies once took part in the Disney Accelerator Program, with Sphero (2014) and littleBits (2016) eventually producing products licensed by Disney, including Sphero’s famous BB-8 App-Enabled Droid and littleBits’ Marvel Avengers Hero Inventor Kit.

Sphero plans to continue spurring international growth with further acquisitions of other products and companies.

About the author

James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn, AKA The Rock Father, is Editor-in-Chief of The Toy Book, a Senior Editor at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider, and Editor of The Toy Report, The Toy Book‘s weekly industry newsletter. As a pop culture and toy industry expert, Zahn has appeared as a panelist and guest at events including Comic-Con International: San Diego (SDCC) Wizard World Chicago, and the ASTRA Marketplace & Academy. Zahn has more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment, retail, and publishing industries, and is frequently called upon to offer expert commentary for publications such as Forbes, Marketwatch, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Reuters, the Washington Post, and more. James has appeared on History Channel’s Modern Marvels, was interviewed by Larry King and Anderson Cooper, and has been seen on Yahoo! Finance, CNN, CNBC, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, CBS, WGN, The CW, and more. Zahn joined the Adventure Media & Events family in 2016, initially serving as a member of the Parent Advisory Board after penning articles for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family, PBS KIDS, Sprout Parents (now Universal Kids), PopSugar, and Chicago Parent. He eventually joined the company full time as a Senior Editor and moved up the ranks to Deputy Editor and Editor-in-Chief.