Another day, another drone…
Yeah, it’s safe to say that aerial cameras are a rapidly growing market – but Yuneec’s new flyer is definitely worth a second look, and not just because it’s cheaper than many rival quadcopters.
Go on, then…
OK, so it’s called the Breeze, and it’s aimed primarily at social media users who want to easily capture aerial photos or videos of their exploits then share them quickly with their circle of real (and virtual) mates.
To that end, the Breeze is small and lightweight (385g), making it easy to carry around with you, and doesn’t have a dedicated controller. This isn’t some acrobatic wonder, or a drone you’re going to send half a mile away – it’s designed for close, simple, largely automated (it has GPS and optical sensors to keep it steady) flight, and it’s all controlled by a smartphone app.
That doesn’t sound like much fun.
Like I said, this isn’t designed to be a fun flying machine, just an affordable, easy-to-use aerial camera platform. The app control extends to about 100m, and gives you a live feed from the drone’s front-mounted camera, all the better to frame those majestic selfies.
But while the lack of a dedicated controller might limit your ability for fine-tuned control, the Breeze can be piloted directly using touchscreen controls, as well as made to fly in a variety of special modes – there’s auto take-off and landing, return-to-home, plus modes that’ll have the drone circle your position, training the camera on you at all times, or focus on a point-of-interest.
And how long can it fly?
The battery gives you about 12 minutes of air-time per charge, during which you can capture footage at up to 4K quality or 13MP stills. And the app (which is available for Android and iOS from launch) then allows you to share photos directly via Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram, Facebook and more.
You said it was cheap?
Relatively, yes. The Breeze is US$500, making it a lot less stressful on the wallet than the more “advanced” drones we’re used to seeing – and it’ll be available to buy from some time in September.