In case you missed it, 2014 has been the year of the drone. I don’t mean the top-secret military versions that you only hear about in covert operations, I mean, the personal-use, need it to take better selfies and deliver hamburgers while you sit on your couch, drone. Aside from Amazon recently announcing in the press that they were considering drone deliveries of packages, at least one San Francisco based company is already in the –ehem– “pilot” stage of delivering medications via drone using your smartphone. Yes, that is all happening, and if you don’t have one already you are behind the curve. The good news though, as with most technology-based items, they continue to grow less expensive as the market gets competitive. In walks AirDog – just in time!
AirDog is a self-described easy-to-use, unique autonomous drone technology for sports enthusiasts. And like many of the other recent iterations by some of its more pricey competitors, it’s also GoPro compatible. They have started by launching a Kickstarter campaign that nearly doubled its goal in a short forty-day window.
Largely considered a huge breakthrough in personal drone technology, the AirDog aims to take all of the guesswork out of piloting these amazing machines. They feature fully autonomous action, high-performance specifications, gyro stabilization, and a GoPro gimbal for mounting. The people behind the AirDog also note that no remote control skills are required to pilot it.
To use it, you simply strap the programmable remote on your wrist or helmet and it is ready to follow you wherever you go. No remote control skills are necessary! AirDog fuses data from remote and processes it with clever algorithms. Takeoff and landing are completely autonomous, freeing you to focus on your performance. The AirDog has preset flight modes to ensure flawless experience in a wide variety of action sports like surfing, motocross, wakeboarding etc. It’s been dubbed “your airborne sidekick,” but with all of AirDog’s features, this is far more than just a flying companion. The AirDog expands versatility of GoPros, the pinnacle of sports videography perfection. Active gyro stabilization guarantees that video footage is absolutely stable, remarkably smooth, and always level with the horizon.
With the financial boost from their recent successful Kickstarter campaign, AirDog will make it to production and into the hands of sports enthusiasts by November. The original price for campaign pledgers will be USD 995 – USD 1,195 (level of sponsorship depending). Designed by and for those passionate about action sports, it is foldable, fast, and tough; the drone can track and follow users and their trajectory, and capture every frame with ultra-stable accuracy. The AirDog has a flight time of up to 15 minutes. Zipping along at 40 mph, AirDog can keep up with even the speediest of action sports. According to Edgars Rozentals, CEO and founder of Helico Aerospace Industries, “It took a year and countless caffeine-fueled hours, that were spent hacking intelligent flight code algorithms. The result is extremely intelligent simple to use drone technology for every action sports enthusiast out there. From its roots the Airdog was designed to serve and obey those pushing the boundaries in sports” says Rozentals, summing up just how advanced this product really is.
Rozentals and the Helico team know what they’re talking about. As innovators in unmanned aerial systems (UAS), the group has experience in creating industrial applications for the civil use of drone technology. Helico’s project list includes airframe technology, integrated onboard computers, operating systems, and cloud-computing infrastructure for unmanned systems.
All that is to say, if you don’t have a drone yet, you should probably get one. I currently have mine writing this for me…in the cloud…literally (ok that’s not a thing, but it has to happen soon).