Saturday, August 13, 2011

Parrot AR Drone - iPhone Remote Control (RC) Helicopter

Yesterday, I was around Funan DigitaLife mall and as usual I have visited Challenger Electronics Supermarket. I have came across this innovative RC (remote control) model helicopter named Parrot AR Drone. The AR drone is a Wi-Fi quadricopter with 2 cameras which creates its own wi-fi network and an iPhone device can connect to this network and and control the drone. The model have some auto pilot features which helps piloting it. The catch is that it is equipped with cameras which relays real time video to your smartphone screen while piloting it. I do not remember the ar drone price but I think it was around 500 SGD. Parrot AR Drone 2.0 is only 299 USD (373 SGD) in Amazon and as you may have known Amazon has free shipping for Singapore.

The package comes with an AR drone, hull with guard rings (for indoor usage), hull without guard rings (for outdoor usage), battery, charger, adapters and stickers. iPhone control is not the only innovation. This model helicopter can be used in a game which combines reality and virtual reality. The video game, named AR FlyingAce, is a dogfight between two AR.Drones which deploys augmented reality. For example the game models a missile fire, which you can see from your iPhone screen.

The drone is a quadrocopter, it has 4 propellers instead of one. This already makes it more stable. But it has more: an auto pilot. When you push the launch button on your iPhone it automatically goes up to 1 meter above the ground and hovers there waiting for your input. When you stop piloting, it automatically hovers and waits for your input. Although it is only available on iPhone and iPad, it will be soon available to be controlled by Android smart phones.

New AR Drone Product Features Demo

The AR drone has a small fan site in Singapore. Below in the video you can see AR drone in Singapore flown at Changi Rise.

AR drone Singapore Changi Rise Condominium

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