While there are already some truly tiny consumer drones out there, their protruding propellers still make them difficult to stuff into one’s pocket. AeriCam had been developing a model called the Anura, which featured props that folded into its sides – as a result, the whole aircraft became a pocketable rectangle. While we haven’t heard much about that one lately, Droidworx is now promising something similar in the form of its Blu quadcopter.
Like the Anura, the Blu features propellers that can be folded flat, along with prop arms that are in turn folded into the copter’s rectangular carbon fiber body when not in use. If you’ve got a big enough pocket, it could then be slid in there.
Some of its other features include an HD camera that records 1080p/60fps video and 12-megapixel stills on a 4GB MicroSD card, a low-res camera that streams video to the user’s mobile device, a GPS navigation/position-holding system, plus a combo of ultrasound and infrared rangefinders that reportedly allow it to avoid obstacles while flying autonomously.
Those autonomous flight modes include the abilities to follow a path of preprogrammed GPS waypoints, to automatically fly back to its starting point if it loses contact with its user or has a low battery, and to follow along above its moving user while tracking the signal of their mobile device (the Follow Me mode used by various other drones). In the case of the latter, users can adjust the distance at which it follows, plus they can opt to wear a Bluetooth bracelet if they don’t want to carry their smartphone with them while skiing, cycling, etc.
The aircraft can also be piloted manually, using a paired iOS or Android mobile device. One charge of the drone’s 1,000-mAh battery should be goof for about 15 minutes of flight time.
Droidworx is now taking preorders for the Blu, which is priced at US$499. Delivery is expected in the second week of October.