Sphero Mini can be used without a smart device, thanks to Desktoy Mode (also known as Mini Escape). In this mode Sphero Mini is trying to escape from you. To get started, connect Mini to the Sphero Play app, use the top right icon to open the Settings screen, and toggle the Desktoy Mode switch at the bottom of the advanced settings tab to the "on" position. Next, disconnect Mini by closing the app which causes Mini to flash its lights and go to sleep. With Desktoy Mode enabled, you can now wake Mini by shaking / tapping it or by plugging the charging cable in and then unplugging it. Once woken, Mini will enter a rainbow state where its LEDs change color when you spin it.
From the rainbow state, give Mini a shake or knock it against your hand a few times to start Desktoy Mode. You'll know the escape game is about to start when the LEDs pulse green three times. Place your robot on the table or floor and then keep it from running away by blocking it with your hand or foot. Mini will get faster the longer you play. If you can successfully keep Mini from escaping for a minute and a half, your robot will stop running, turn green, and you've won the game. If Mini is able to run one meter in a straight line or drops from the table, you lose, Mini wins, and turns red. Give Mini a shake or some taps to play again, or connect to the app to drive, play games, and have more fun.
If Desktoy Mode is enabled and Mini goes to sleep (LEDs turn off), you can wake it back up into the rainbow state by shaking / tapping it or by plugging the charging cable in and then unplugging it. If Mini is trying to escape and you need it to stop, the easiest way is to hold it in one hand and drop it into the other. To disable Desktoy Mode so that Mini no longer tries to escape when you shake or tap it, connect back to the app, browse to the advanced settings screen, and set the Desktoy Mode switch to the off position.
Desktoy Mode is also a great way for cats to enjoy Sphero Mini!