LG Announces Smart Controller for Easier Drone Control

February 21, 2016 - Written By Nick Sutrich

Drones are all the rage nowadays.  Whether it’s controlling your own pint-sized drone or letting Amazon or Google deliver products to your doorstep via considerably larger ones, it seems like everyone is feeling drone fever.  There’s a good reason for it too, these oversized (or sometimes undersized) toys are simply a blast to play with, and they’ve got plenty of additional uses too.  Many who enjoy flying drones tend to tack cameras onto the units and film aerial shots of landscapes, film scenes of fireworks up close and more.  But the problem with most drones is that they’re incredibly sophisticated, which in turn means most people are going to have incredible difficulty controlling them.

Famous drone manufacturer Parrot has recognized this difficulty barrier for many people and has teamed up with LG to create a brand new way to interface with its most popular drones; the LG Smart Controller.  This generically named accessory actually only works on very specific models of drones, a list which has yet to be released but will certainly come with the final retail unit.  One model that it’s sure to work with is the new Parrot Bebop 2, which was mentioned in the conference, and plenty of other Parrot drones with cameras built in.  This is specifically since the drone will pair with your brand new LG G5 via the Smart Controller, and actually includes a mount just above the joystick so that you can easily pair and view the drone’s footage right from the controller.

This makes controlling your drone more like a video game, and given its simple design and the first person perspective that’s sure to come with having a screen attached to the controller you’d better bet more people are going to be getting these toys come release time.  At the conference the representative from Parrot showed off the controller, which features a clamshell folding design not unlike flip phones of years past.  When closed the joystick is still accessible for quick and easy flying, but once opened you can easily snap your G5 into the clips as well as perform some additional maneuvers.  Parrot suggested that you can “feel” the movement of the drone in a much more real sense, making us wonder if this has some sort of advanced haptic feedback engine built into the joystick.  Either way the new 3D maneuvering from the joystick and visuals from the phone are sure to make drones even more interesting when the Smart Controller launches this year.