In-person competition is a no-go in many disciplines amid the COVID-19 pandemic, but speed cubers will be still able to battle opponents remotely in the Rubik’s Cube World Cup. Rubik’s has revealed the Connected Cube, which links to your phone or tablet and tracks your solve times and progress in real-time.
It’s more of a traditional cube than GoCube, which is largely a STEM-focused toy. Both use the same platform and can connect to the Rubik’s Arena community, which has almost 47,000 players. As such, amateur and professional cubers can take part in this year’s World Cup without having to travel, as long as they have a Connected Cube or GoCube. Qualifiers start August 15th and run through October 10th. The final takes place on November 7th.
Solve times are likely going to be a bit slower with the Connected Cube than a standard one. It’s a bit heavier, and there aren’t any magnets, which support fast rotations and lock the sides in place. So, competitors this year might not break Yusheng Du’s current world record solve time of 3.47 seconds. Artificial intelligence can solve the puzzle even faster.
Rubik’s hasn’t confirmed pricing for the Connected Cube, though pre-orders open on August 18th. The GoCube costs $79.99. If you caught the speed cubing bug after watching that recent Netflix documentary, the Connected Cube could help you take your first steps towards competing.