The head of BB8 attaches magnetically to the body for use. When you install the batteries and set he head on the body. Then you use the remote to command the unit to orient itself and get the head unit in the right position. Once the orientation is complete you can use the remote control like any RC unit.
The only issue I had with my play time is that the head doesn’t stay on very well, especially if it bumps into walls or tries to go over obstacles. Also there is no on/off switch so you can only turn it off if you hold him upside down for several seconds. Be warned though, he turns right back on usually.