While Romo isn't the first time someone's leveraged the computing power of a smartphone to control a robot, it certainly is one of the cutest examples we've seen in a while. And like so many of our favorite gadgety success stories lately, this one has its origins at Kickstarter. Peter Seid and Phu Nguyen's startup, Romotive, begins where your handset leaves off, by supplying the "movement, accessories, and physical capabilities that a true robot needs."
What will you get for your hard earned $78? A treaded chasis and a strap for holding your cellphone — or iPod Touch — into place. The handset interfaces with Romo through a 3.5mm audio cable, so this bad boy can conceivably work with any handset with your standard audio jack. Currently, the RomoRemote app (free for iOS) lets you control your robot with another iOS device. Aside from basic mobility, the thing will send audio and video from the robot to the operator. Creepy? Maybe. Fun? Definitely. The developers promise that an Android app and developer libraries for both platforms are forthcoming. See it in action in the video below.