LEGO is discontinuing MINDSTORMS in 2022

The LEGO Group has announced that it’s discontinuing its LEGO MINDSTORMS line-up at the end of 2022, with app support only guaranteed for another two years.

First launching in September 1998, the MINDSTORMS platform has been central to the LEGO Group’s coding experience for nearly a quarter of a century. However, the company says its priorities now lie in ‘LEGO Education and other Build & Code experiences’, and it’s subsequently retiring the current MINDSTORMS set 51515 Robot Inventor (and the platform’s individual components) by the end of this year.

“We have decided to focus our resources and future plans by redirecting our MINDSTORMS Robot Inventor team and their expertise into different areas of the business,” the LEGO Group shared in a statement. The app for 51515 Robot Inventor, which offers instructions for five different motorised robots and vehicles, will remain live ‘until at least the end of 2024’, with updates to support new operating systems across iOS, MacOS, Windows, Android and FireOS.

While this is apparently the end of LEGO MINDSTORMS, though, the LEGO Group isn’t abandoning the concept altogether. “We still have strong belief in the Build & Code proposition and will continue to support it through platforms such as SPIKE Prime, and we are continuing to hold on to the trademark for the MINDSTORMS brand and assessing our future plans together with LEGO Education,” the company added.

That said, SPIKE Prime is effectively LEGO Education’s implementation of MINDSTORMS, so it’s tricky to envision how the two platforms could co-exist under a single banner. The major consequence of retiring 51515 Robot Inventor (and associated components, such as 88016 Large Hub) is that the LEGO Group’s ‘Build & Code proposition’ won’t be as readily available to everyday consumers.

LEGO MINDSTORMS 51515 Robot Inventor is still available at LEGO.com (in the UK and Europe – it’s ‘temporarily out of stock’ in the US), but with app updates only promised for two more years – in line with standard practices for digital apps tied to retiring physical products, such as VIDIYO – there’s seemingly a hard limit on how long that investment will be useful for.

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Chris Wharfe

I like to think of myself as a journalist first, LEGO fan second, but we all know that’s not really the case. Journalism does run through my veins, though, like some kind of weird literary blood – the sort that will no doubt one day lead to a stress-induced heart malfunction. It’s like smoking, only worse. Thankfully, I get to write about LEGO until then. You can follow me on Twitter at @brfa_chris.

7 thoughts on “LEGO is discontinuing MINDSTORMS in 2022

  • 31/10/2022 at 07:46
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    Do you have the actual official announcement as there is nothing on LEGO.com and I am now very confused by the query I sent to LEGO.com asking for verification of the discontinuing announcement. Here is the reply I got:

    Thanks for your question!

    There is no official statement about this product. Our marketing team has a long-term plan for our products and whether this product is included or not we can’t tell at this point.

    If this is the decision that has been made by the LEGO® company, an official statement would still need to be released as there has been no official statement released.

    I hope I have hereby informed you accordingly and wish you a great rest of the day!

    Kind regards,
    Joris
    LEGO® Customer Service

    Reply
  • 27/10/2022 at 10:48
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    I wish they could have consulted me when they were desigining LEGO Spike. Its a very disappointing product

    Reply
    • 04/11/2022 at 16:30
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      What would you have done differently?

      Reply
  • 27/10/2022 at 07:31
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    That’s really so very sad. Both my kids were brought up on Lego Mindstorms, and I’m truly indebted to this amazing tool for thought that I could provide them. If I may request Lego to please continue on this product for some more time, to help a lot more kids in the world, and spin it as a separate company if needed.

    FLL – First Lego League – was built on this very platform, and is a festival for kids too. The excitement it brought into the life of so many of them is just uncomparable to any product ever for the kids.

    Plzzzzz …

    Reply
    • 28/10/2022 at 17:13
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      FLL has been supporting SPIKE Prime for several years now as a robot platform, although I think it’s not as good as EV3. Teams will hold on to their EV3 sets for as long as possible, until enough parts (i.e. cables!) break and replacements are no longer available…

      Reply
  • 26/10/2022 at 23:34
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    I wish they would not end mindstorms.

    Reply

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