Self-Flying Drone Unveils Car Following Mode


In a major update for its flying autonomous camera drone, the Skydio R1 receives four new cinematic modes, including a car following mode that allows the drone to track the movement of a car on the ground and trail it, a feature that Skydio is really touting as the big update in this release.

The other new modes include Quarter Lead, Quarter Follow, and Car Tripod. That’s a lot of cinematic capability in such a small unmanned aerial vehicle.

Skydio CEO Adam Bry commented on the R1’s first major update, saying: “With Skydio R1, cinematography becomes a software-defined experience. That means we can regularly introduce fundamentally new capabilities over time for all existing and future users.”

Image via Skydio.

Employing an NVIDIA Jetson artificial intelligence supercomputer, the Skydio R1 is touted by the company as an “advanced autonomous device.”

The marquee tech in the update – the Car Follow cinematic mode – is made possible thanks to neural networks and image-based learning that helps the drone recognize a car on the ground.

In addition to the new cinematic modes, the update also streamlines the Skydio R1’s collision detection system so that it can better manoeuvre itself in the sky.

Also, the companion mobile app received a user interface overhaul in an attempt to make it easier to use as well as offer quick access to the new cinematic modes. Also, the app will display exact landing locations for the drone.

Introduced in February 2018, the R1 received praise upon its release with The Verge even calling the device the “drone GoPro should have made.”

Available for $USD 2,499, the Skydio R1 also offers an impressive bit of kit for its price.

And with its new autonomous flying modes and cinematic capabilities, it is sure to be a favourite of action camera enthusiasts everywhere. You can check it out on their website by clicking here.

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Kehl is our staff photography news writer and has over a decade of experience in online media and publishing and you can get to know him better here

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