How Do Anki Drive Cars Work?


Quick Answer

Anki Drive cars are equipped with optical sensors, wireless chips and motors and race on tracks that have unique micro-patterns the car detects to work out exactly where it is, where it's going and its speed. A mobile app acts as a base station to interpret data and plan strategy.

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Full Answer

Each car is powered by robotics and can steer and battle other Anki cars on its own when the mobile app is downloaded to the owner's device. The cars can read their positions on the track hundreds of times per second by channeling an infrared LED light through a light guide that illuminates the track from underneath the body of each car. This allows the imaging sensor on the car to read the track's patterns, much like an optical mouse. These patterns are relayed to the mobile device, which then guides the cars by creating a racing pattern that tries to outdo the other Anki cars in the race battle.

There are two motors attached to the rear wheels that provide both propulsion and steering to the mini cars. The front wheels are not attached to a motor but do balance the car proportionately. Anki Drive race cars become better at interpreting the data and access more upgrades and customizations the more they are raced.

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