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Unfortunately, LEGO has recently announced that after 24 years, the Mindstorms line of Robotics Kits is officially being discontinued at the end of this year. For this reason, the 51515 Robot Inventor Sets will soon no longer be available. However, LEGO has confirmed that the Spike Prime kits, or the educational counterpart(s) of the Robot Inventor, will continue to be produced. Therefore, I might have to start buying these kits in lieu of the Robot Inventor kits as demand for the retired kits begins to rise. The good news is that the Mindstorms Robot Inventor and Spike Prime kits both share identical hardware, the only difference being the colors and assortment of elements, both of which can be easily circumvented.

However, the Robot Inventor software has several additional features that Spike Prime does not, most notably the recently-enabled Bluetooth Low-Energy (BLE) Daisy-Chaining, or Hub-2-Hub Communication. I currently have a Robot Inventor Hub with an up-to-date version of its firmware installed, and I am strongly considering buying a Spike Prime Hub to use with it for larger models. Because it is currently not yet possible to directly program the Spike Prime Hub with the Robot Inventor Software, I would like to ask if it is possible to re-flash the Spike Prime Hub with the Robot Inventor Hub's firmware so that the Spike Prime Hub will behave the exact same way as a Robot Inventor Hub while retaining the same functionality (especially the ability of Hub-2-Hub communication) of a Robot Inventor Hub. And if so, how?

3 Answers 3

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Yes, this is possible. Just connect the SPIKE Prime hub to the MINDSTORMS Robot Inventor App. The app will tell you that the firmware needs to be updated. Follow the instructions in the app to update the firmware. Then use the Robot Inventor app to write the programs for the SPIKE Prime hub.

Since the hubs are virtually identical, it also works the other way around. The MINDSTORMS Robot Inventor hub can be used with the SPIKE Prime app.

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  • Got it, okay. Thank you so much. :) Nov 20, 2022 at 18:09
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    I've recently bought the inventor set and tried the other way, thus installing the spike os on the inventor hub. When doing so the Spike App connects to the hub, but almost instantly disconnects with the message that an error occurred. Do you have any hint why this is not working?
    – edi
    Jan 3, 2023 at 20:21
  • Which SPIKE app are you using? The legacy v2 app or the new v3 app? Jan 3, 2023 at 20:46
  • The newst android version from the app store. I couldn't test it yet but I think the error might be caused by the fact that I've forgotten to connect the hub over USB.
    – edi
    Jan 4, 2023 at 19:02
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There is no problem with switching between SPIKE Legacy and Mindstorms RI firmware.

But ...

Do not upgrade your firmware with the SPIKE 3 App. After you will not be able to use your hub with SPIKE 2 (Legacy) or Mindstorms RI app. The only simple solution for downgrade is: https://code.pybricks.com/

Moreover, Mindstorms RI Hubs (green hubs), are not compatible with the New SPIKE app (V3). It's not possible to update your Hub. For sure that's a business strategy.

So be careful with the new application/software.

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  • That's unfortunate. Won't new hubs purchased already have the V3 firmware installed? If so, then I guess Mindstorms is done and I'll just have to move onto another platform instead. Jan 18, 2023 at 22:55
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If you have the SPIKE v3 firmware, in order to flash with Mindstorms RI firmware you need to downgrade SPIKE v3 to SPIKE v2 (Legacy) via this link: https://spikelegacy.legoeducation.com/hubdowngrade/#step-1

After the downgrade, you can proceed to the Mindstorms RI app to flash the hub with the Mindstorms RI firmware.

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    Having in mind how TLG isn't reliable in keeping records of their digital stuff (webpages, files, tools and instructions disappear without notice) is there a way to adjust this answer to be self sufficient?
    – Alex
    Sep 27, 2023 at 20:14

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