DJI – the biggest drone manufacturer to date – just announced a new addition to their family, the DJI Spark. At a DJI event held in New York, the company unveiled the new drone which is the smallest drone model by DJI yet.
Apart from its miniature design that is supposed to be only as big as your smartphone, what sets the DJI Spark apart from other drones is the simplicity the DJI Spark packs. The best drone models by DJI in market like the Mavic Pro and Phantom are excellent quality machines but they have a slight drawback – not everyone can use them. The company has looked into that problem and now targeted a wider consumer audience with the DJI Spark. This new drone is easy to use and does not require any expertise. You can literally take it out of the box and start capturing your videos and pictures with it immediately.
In terms of its size, we already established that the DJI Spark is super small compared to other drones in the industry. Ben Popper, founding editor of The Verge further emphasized on its small size by posting a picture from the DJI event on his Twitter account.
DJI's new drone – the spark – is here. Size and weight of a soda can pic.twitter.com/FibZt01V20
— Ben Popper (@benpopper) May 24, 2017
Now that we have discussed the key features of the DJI Spark, let’s talk specs. The most exciting feature the new drone has to offer is its gesture mode. Unlike most drones, the DJI Spark does not need an external remote or the smartphone app to operate. The machine detects your face and body and you can lift it up and move it around with simple hand gestures. The DJI Spark can even fly back on its own up to 10 feet distance if you wave at it. 10 feet might not seem a lot when it comes to drone, but worry not! You can increase the distance with the smartphone app up to 300 ft, and you can further increase the range up to 1.3 miles using the actual Spark remote
The app not only increases the distance range of the device but it also expands the range of cool features the drone has to offer. For example, you can change the shooting mode to QuickShot (which is a brand new feature by DJI that will let users shoot one minute of footage and edit it down to 10 seconds if they want), Dronie, Circle or Helix.
The DJI Spark weighs only 10.5 ounces, roughly 1 pound. It features a 12-MP sensor and is supported a two-axis gimbal with a camera shoots 1080p videos at 30 frames/seconds. Spark also has a GPS GLONASS sensor, a 3-D depth perception and visual-position sensors which will give it the ability to dodge obstacles.
There are a few shortcomings to the new drone though. Since the DJI Spark is a lot smaller than its brethren and a lot cheaper, it doesn’t offer everything the Mavic Pro or Phantom do. Along with some missing features, the DJI Spark has a flight time of only 16 minutes compared to Mavic’s 27 minute flight time. Furthermore unlike the 4K footage provide by the latest Mavic model, Spark only features 1080p full HD footage. The compromise on some specs is understandable through given its size and price.
The DJI Spark is up for pre-ordering now and costs only US $499. It is available in five colors – Lava Red, Sky Blue, Alpine White, Sunrise Yellow and Meadow Green. The drone is scheduled to start shipping in mid-June this year.