Skip

AR Drone Helicopters
September 6, 2010 7:32 AM   Subscribe

Got an iPhone? Always wanted to fly a helicopter? AR Drones allow you to fly a quadricopter with mounted video cameras through your iPhone.

The developers' video shows some of the capabilities. The AR of the title refers to the Augmented Reality element brought in by the helicopter's cameras
posted by Biru (35 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
That reminds me of the Brosnan James Bond film where he's driving a car from the back seat using a phone.

Also, it will be fun to hack into the wifi connection and use it to attack the bratty kid pilot who's been harassing people with it.
posted by XMLicious at 7:46 AM on September 6, 2010


Ah yes, I knew it reminded me of something as well! Thanks for the reminder.
posted by Biru at 7:47 AM on September 6, 2010


This reminds my of the Robin Williams' film Toys where kids think they're playing video games but in actuality, the military is using them to steer and bomb villages via unmanned air craft controlled by their "video game."
posted by Bathtub Bobsled at 8:11 AM on September 6, 2010 [1 favorite]


"Vertical Camera to measure speed" - cool, they're using an "Optical Flow" sensor.
posted by Popular Ethics at 8:23 AM on September 6, 2010


I've already seen this on sale in FNAC stores in France (and possibly elsewhere in Europe). I feel a great disturbance in the Geeksphere this Christmas...
posted by Skeptic at 8:31 AM on September 6, 2010


Flying Pepsi Blue?
posted by JMOZ at 8:43 AM on September 6, 2010


Flying Pepsi Blue?

Are you shitting me? This is a post about a toy helicopter you can fly with a cell phone. This is some straight up James Bond shit -- literally. This is Pepsi Fucking Awesome.
posted by chunking express at 8:58 AM on September 6, 2010 [17 favorites]


Taking onto account battery life and recharging capacity...

How many of these would you need to have a constantly available mobile camera platform?
posted by leotrotsky at 9:03 AM on September 6, 2010


The future is now. I think this is way cool, and completely makes up for the huge red letters for my pre-order. I'd have also liked to see a little more video from the on-board camera.
posted by crunchland at 9:05 AM on September 6, 2010


Can I use a cell phone to control a robotic snake too?

'Cause then all these worlds would be mine, including Europa.
posted by nomadicink at 9:24 AM on September 6, 2010


Hmmm...

"Anonymous delivery of illegal substance for anyone at this global position."
posted by Drasher at 9:34 AM on September 6, 2010


I thought these were the coolest things ever, but they don't fly that high, can't take even minimal wind, and you can't record the video.

I'm going to take a pass.

When these were first announced I got excited. I was even like the first commenter on the developer's youtube channel, but without being able to fly even house high I think I'm going to hold out for something a bit more robust.

Other than the iPhone wankery I am not sure what's neat, but then I am not into augmented reality or video games.
posted by cjorgensen at 9:36 AM on September 6, 2010


Now all it needs is a tazer mod and a flying penguin buddy and Mr Gibson will be very pleased.
posted by Mil at 10:03 AM on September 6, 2010


I saw one of these at Google IO (you can also use an Android phone). It's pretty cool, definitely want one to fly over my cats.
posted by wildcrdj at 10:12 AM on September 6, 2010


Hmm they no longer mention Android I see, despite having seen it working 4 months ago on an Android phone. Maybe they're just staggering the app release, I can see doing iPhone first if you had to choose.
posted by wildcrdj at 10:18 AM on September 6, 2010


I have a Spykee robot that I can control using my Android phone. So fuck you.
posted by kbanas at 11:06 AM on September 6, 2010


I'm a bit confused here on the WiFi thing - it doesn't produce a signal, correct? It just uses some other signal, like your home or office network, and your iProduct has to be on that same network, correct?

I like that it has safety auto-landing when it loses signal or contact, but that safety landing would happen about two feet outside my front door. Where am I supposed to find a strong enough WiFi signal that I can take this thing outdoors as shown?
posted by komara at 11:29 AM on September 6, 2010


Here's the official website. The site linked is a "fan" page...
posted by danny the boy at 11:39 AM on September 6, 2010


According to the FAQ (I had to append .pdf to the filename) it creates its own ad-hoc network.
posted by danny the boy at 11:43 AM on September 6, 2010


This is Pepsi Fucking Awesome.

Sugar or High Fructose Corn Syrup?
posted by rough ashlar at 12:21 PM on September 6, 2010


Other than the iPhone wankery I am not sure what's neat, but then I am not into augmented reality or video games.

Everything's amazing and nobody's happy.
posted by kcds at 12:39 PM on September 6, 2010 [3 favorites]


Saw these demoed at E3. Very cool in person.
posted by eyeballkid at 1:03 PM on September 6, 2010


Wow. Now if Apple could just come up with a phone that would let the user make and receive phone calls they'd really have something.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 1:05 PM on September 6, 2010


Android doesn't support ad-hoc 802.11 (without rooting the phone and using the underlying Linux commands). I suspect this is why us Android users can't have nice things.
posted by miyabo at 1:05 PM on September 6, 2010


Wow. Now if Apple could just come up with a phone that would let the user make and receive phone calls they'd really have something.

Hahhahahahah

*picks up iPhone4 to call everyone he knows about the funniest thing ever that he read on the internet*

He look, I'm calling people and it's working!
posted by eyeballkid at 1:11 PM on September 6, 2010 [2 favorites]


The N900 can... I wonder if there'll be a port. Seems to firmware of the drone itself runs on Linux but that's no guarantee the controlling software does, sadly...
posted by benzo8 at 1:17 PM on September 6, 2010


Text says it works with iPod Touch too.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 1:43 PM on September 6, 2010


benzo8: "The N900 can... I wonder if there'll be a port."

I just got an n900 - with that thing you could run wireshark and reverse engineer the commands being sent, I doubt the command protocol is heavily encrypted or anything.
posted by idiopath at 1:49 PM on September 6, 2010


kbanas: "I have a Spykee robot that I can control using my Android phone. So fuck you."

Nice.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:54 PM on September 6, 2010


Srsly.. combine this sort of thing with diydrones.com and the solar-powered infinite duration airplane designs, and you end up with a very interesting hobby - having a fleet of home-made spy drones capable of wandering just about anywhere. A couple of high-bandwidth amateur radio satellites, and you're good to go.

(I do wonder whether this sort of thing may be the saviour of ham radio. There's nowhere else you can do interesting radio experiments, and there's a ton of bandwidth in the higher bands)
posted by Devonian at 4:10 PM on September 6, 2010 [1 favorite]


He look, I'm calling people and it's working!

iHateYouAll.
posted by loquacious at 4:45 PM on September 6, 2010 [1 favorite]


If only these sorts of things worked over 3G instead of WiFi.
posted by kafziel at 4:49 PM on September 6, 2010


I thought these were the coolest things ever, but they don't fly that high, can't take even minimal wind, and you can't record the video.

I believe ARDrones can stream the video to any device that can take a WiFi signal. This includes laptops, iPhones etc, although iPhones also get this app with which you can control. So it should be possible to record stuff.

The real downer here is battery life, IMHO, only about 15-20 minutes advertised life, if I'm not wrong.

If you're okay with tinkering with electronics and stuff, you should take a look at Diydrones.com. They've been developing an open-source UAV for years now; lots of how-to's and spare-parts discussions out there.
posted by the cydonian at 7:38 PM on September 6, 2010


The real downer here is battery life, IMHO, only about 15-20 minutes advertised life, if I'm not wrong.

That's pretty much the standard for battery operated helicopters.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:07 AM on September 7, 2010


*picks up iPhone4 to call everyone he knows about the funniest thing ever that he read on the internet*He look, I'm calling people and it's working!
posted by eyeballkid at 1:11 PM on September 6 [2 favorites +] [!]


Inside buzzzzzzz was that Apple was developing an app that would provide a sense of humor for their blind fanboyz. Turns out though, that it wasn't compliant with the bio-ware.
posted by PareidoliaticBoy at 9:58 PM on September 21, 2010


« Older That's no moon, that's La Luna   |   A pilgrim's POV of the UK Papal Visit Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post