Manufacturers are sticking Bluetooth into everything these days: washers, dryers, ovens, cars... even a basketball. Thanks to a company called 94Fifty, the smart basketball of the future is a thing that you'll actually be able to buy fairly soon.
The ball features internal sensors that monitor everything from your dribble strength, backspin, shot arc and speed, consistency, and how long you hold the ball with one hand while dribbling. It then sends all this info back to your Bluetooth-connected smartphone with the 94Fifty app, so you can see the results. This, of course, will help you see areas where you need to improve as a player of the game. At the end of the day, simply toss the ball on any Qi charging pad to juice it up, and away you go.
But how much can you expect to shell out for a ball with this much tech crammed into its rubbery shell? The original system, which was designed for team practice, goes for around $5,000; however, the upcoming ball will set you back around $300 when it becomes available for pre-order at the beginning of April, with both iOS and Android apps expected to be available at release time in Q3 of this year. Still, at that price you better be pretty dedicated to improving your jumpshot for more than just props on the blacktop.
For more info on the smartball, head over to 94fifty's site.