Innovations That Matter

Pong being converted into a coffee table

Work & Lifestyle

The Godfather of video games is being turned into a real-life physical form game that also doubles up as a retro coffee table.

Having recently smashed its crowdfunding target of USD 250,000, a company in Uruguay is putting its Table Pong Project into production – a coffee table that’s also a physical Pong game. No pixels.

The bats are controlled by paddles and the ball moves across the playing area using a combination of magnets and motors. There’s a LED display which juggles uses as a score display and clock, plus the table has four USB slots for phone recharging and can even stream music via bluetooth. Units can be ordered with or without a coin slot, and come in different designs (so if the Atari-themed branding isn’t to a customer’s taste they can have it toned down to simple black). Two lids flip up and over the controls when gamers have had enough Pong and just want a coffee table.

And while pledges are now closed, preorders are open. The cheapest table will retail at USD 1,295, with a collector’s edition coming in at USD 5,000. Only 10 of these are up for grabs, all signed by Atari founder Nolan Bushnell. Undoubtedly, office managers at companies like Google and Apple will be buying units by the truckload.

In a world where gaming is constantly trying to break new technical and computing boundaries, it’s a fresh idea seeing something digital transformed into the physical. A recent hybrid of real life and digital gaming is the Table Tennis Trainer which blends digital mapping tools onto a physical tennis table. And regards to taking gaming to a whole new dimension, it reminds us of the giant game of Tetris played on the side of a building in Tel Aviv. What other type of recreational activities good for moral could be brought into the office space?



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