This ping pong robot can be programmed to be the perfect partner

The Trainerbot is a smart ping pong robot that aims to take your skills to the next level.

trainerbot smart robot

The Trainerbot on display at HAX Demo Day in San Francisco on May 17, 2016. 

Credit: Martyn Williams

Practice makes perfect. But for a collaborative sport like ping pong, it’s not always easy to find the perfect partner. 

Brothers, Alexander and Harrison Chen, solved this problem by building the “Trainerbot.” This ping pong robot works in tandem with a smart phone app and allows users to create their own custom shots by choosing the speed, direction, and spin with which the Trainerbot shoots balls. 

Alexander and Harrison say they got the idea after they both moved away from home and lost their playing partner. Every summer and winter break, the two brothers would team up to create prototypes until they came up with the 1.2 kilogram, 16 by 32 centimeter Trainerbot. 

Although the idea behind the Trainerbot is the ability to play alone, the app makes collaboration with others quite easy. Users can program and share their own custom shots and drills, as well as watch video tutorials within the app. Trainerbot also comes with a multiplayer option in which two players compete with one another to see who can beat the bot first. 

Trainerbot is currently available for pre-order on Kickstarter.