Paris-based manufacturer Parrot has unveiled a number of new minidrones, which will be able to travel on land, through air and on water. The company is no stranger to flying quad-copters, having released the original AR.Drone at CES 2010 held in Las Vegas, NV and having followed that up with products like the Rolling Spider and Jumping Sumo, which were unveiled at CES 2014. This time around, the company has announced thirteen different variants of five new products, all of which are upgrades over its last year’s releases. All the drones will be fairly affordable ones, with even the most expensive one of the lot costing â‚¬199 ($220) according to the pricing information provided by Parrot on its website. The drones are controlled via Bluetooth, and can communicate with smartphones via Wi-Fi. The drones are said to have a range of around 60 feet (20 meters). While the company has chosen to reveal the details about its latest range of products on its website alone for now, it has also announced an event in the UK to formally launch them internationally. Parrot however has not announced any specific plans to release the devices in the US.
As for the toys themselves, there are five main ones as mentioned above. Firstly, there’s the ultra-lightweight Airborne drone, which weighs 58 grams and has a built-in 3-axis accelerometer and gyroscope. The device also has a camera which supports images of up to VGA resolution, but doesn’t come with support for video. The drone can fly for up to 9 minutes on a single charge and tops out at 11 mph top speed. The drone comes in two different variants. The first one’s Airborne Cargo, which comes in two different colors – a yellow version called Mars and a white version called Travis, both of which cost â‚¬99 (around $112). The second variant is Airborne Night, and it is being offered in three versions that are named SWAT (red), Mc Lane (black) and Blaze (blue), with each one of them costing â‚¬129 ($145). While the Cargo variant can carry small, lightweight objects, the Night edition comes with LED lights, which lets you fly the device in the dark. Interestingly, the lights can even flash Morse code signals when the feature is activated by the user.
Next in line, is the Hydrofoil drone, which is the company’s first ever drone that comes with the ability to travel over water. This one is priced at â‚¬169 ($190 US), and is a hybrid model that has an extension attached underneath, to help it with its amphibian credentials. The company claims, it runs for 7 minutes on a single charge and has a max speed of 6 mph. Finally, there are the two variants of the Jumping drones, which cost â‚¬199 ($223) each. The Race drone (Jett) can travel on land at a max speed of 8 mph, while the Night variant (Marshall) tops out at 5.3 mph. Both can do a neat trick, as in they can both jump up to 32-inches in the air, but the Night drone additionally comes with LED lights to keep the party going in the dark.