Sphero, most famous for its enormously successful remote-controlled version of BB-8, the characterful droid from the new trilogy of Star Wars films, has announced that it's spinning out a new company, exotically named Company Six or CO6.
The company, intriguingly, will apparently develop robotic and AI helpers specifically aimed at those working in dangerous situations, such as first responders, the military and police. If you're hearing "they're building Robocop", you might not be as wrong as you'd like.
Sphero actually hasn't been making Star Wars toys for a little while now, despite the enduring popularity of its BB-8 toy, which was basically the only one capable of reproducing the droids trademark roll.
Clearly, though, teams within Sphero have been working on prototypes and ideas that have applications well beyond the realm of recreation, and are preparing to apply them to a new market.
There's a bit of corporate reshuffling taking place as a result of the new company, with Sphero's previous CEO becoming Chairman of both businesses, while a new CEO takes the reins at Sphero itself.
The new business has coincided with a new funding round for Sphero, too, bringing in $3 million of investment, which makes it a pretty busy week for the company, all in all.
Quite what Company Six does first will only become clear with time, including the answer to the question of exactly what its robots will actually be able to do, whether that means reconnaissance, monitoring or more active participation in events. The new company has a website, but there's precisely no information to be gleaned from it.