Monday, May 27, 2019

Lego Powered Up! Part 3

This is a follow up to Part 1 and Part 2 of the discussion of the next generation of Lego motorized and programmable products.

Last Week Lego hosted a Fan Media event and a talk was given about the roll out of the Lego Powered Up! line of products.   They showed several slides, and then did some interviews taking questions from AFOL media.

So far this is what falls under the "Powered Up!" umbrella of products:
  • Lego Education WeDo 2.0
  • Lego Education Spike Prime
  • Lego Boost
  • Lego Technic Control+
  • Lego Duplo Train
  • Lego City Powered Up
This video from the "Assembled" YouTube channel shows all of the above products and has the program designers answering some questions on the products.

The Good News
  • There will be a "Technic Simple Battery Box" that should be able to turn motors on and off without needing a bluetooth connected device.
  • They are working on rechargeable packs for some of the PU hubs, probably the Powered Up HUB and maybe the Boost HUB.
  • There is still talks of a Powered Up <-> Power Functions compatibility cable.  What we need for the Lego GBC community is a cable that will allow us to connect the new motors to our older 9v Train Controllers.
  • They talked about a possible firmware update to allow the bluetooth hubs to offer basic functionality when not connected to a bluetooth controller.
The Bad News
  • No release date for the simple Technic battery box.
  • Prices for all of this new stuff is much higher than the current power functions.
  • No mention of a Mindstorms EV3 successor

Powered Up GBC Modules in the wild?

Has anyone else publicly displayed a Lego GBC from any of these components?  As far as I know, I have been the first and only person in the world to display a Lego Powered Up Lego GBC module at a public layout.  That was my Lego Boost Pachinko @ BrickCon 2018 which was surprisingly very reliable.  The only drawback was needing my phone to be used for the Boost App whenever the module was turned on.

Technic Control+

The first Technic Control+ sets should be shipping sometime in the second half of 2019.  The massive Liebherr Bucket Excavator (42100) has been delayed until October.  Following that should be the Rock Crawler set that was shown to attendee's at BrickCan 2019 which also used the Control+ system.

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