If you're stumped for something to do with your hands while sat at your desk at work or out and about, but fidget spinners really aren't your thing, Mexico's Hombre Orchestra might just have the answer. The Quiubo has been designed to make music creation fun, with players using its faces to tap out rhythms or pluck virtual guitar strings, or shake out a beat while tipping and twisting to add crazy effects.
Each face of the Quiubo has a different function. Up top is a part-emerged ball that users push to distort playback by tilting the small cube-shaped music-making toy. Another has ridges rising from the surface that can be plucked like guitar strings or stroked like a finger piano. Function buttons on one side activate different features, there's a built-in Bluetooth 3.0 speaker throwing out audio on another and a flat zone elsewhere can be used for finger tapping a beat.
The Quiubo rocks a built-in gyro sensor, which is used to "measure the rate of rotation around the x, y and z axes" as well as allowing effects, chords and sounds to be assigned to each axis. Creations, including audio captured by its microphone, can be recorded and looped at the push of a button, with 1 GB of internal storage saving "transition" creations before sending over to an iOS/Android mobile app, which also allows players to assign instruments to the Quiubo, upload songs to the cloud and share with friends.
The Hombre Orchestra told us that the device has not been designed for use with third party apps, so using it with GarageBand or G-Stomper Studio is not possible. The company also said that the system does allow for collaboration, though it does seem a little clunky. "If the user has a friend with another Quiubo, they can both make a song together. This function works as a live chat, each user needs to make their part of the song and then send it, the second user receives the song and then plays with it."
Finally, the 50 x 50 x 54 mm (1.9 x 1.9 x 2.1 in), 170 g (6 oz) plastic block includes an integrated Li-Po battery for play anywhere jamming for up to 5 hours per 2 hour charge.
The project is currently raising funds on Kickstarter, where pledges start at MXN660 (about US$37). If all goes to plan, shipping to backers is expected to start in July 2018. You can see the Quiubo in action in the video below.