Those small flying robots from that 80’s flick “Batteries Not Included” have arrived. Toss this device into the air (or the water!) and it will automatically whir to life, activating its four rotors while looking back at you with illuminated smiling eyes, eagerly anticipating the crazy stuff you’re about to do next.

It’s not a sentient machine from outer space – just Lily, a new type of action camera drone that can follow you around while filming you.

Tracking sensor

Lily can track down its “master” who is wearing a hockey-puck-sized device on the wrist. This also serves as a remote control, connecting to the camera using WiFi.

One neat thing about the tracking device is the built-in microphone – it makes sense as any audio recorded by the flying drone itself will most likely consist of the whirring sound of its engines. Lily can then automatically sync audio from the tracking device with the video once the user transfers footage to a laptop or computer.

The camera

Lily’s camera is fully built into the drone, which allowed its developers to make the entire device waterproof. It can shoot 1080p videos at 60fps and 720p videos for 120fps (cool for slow-mo’s). Using the remote control/tracking device, you can also snap high-quality 12 megapixel photos.

The software comes with a feature that allows it to predict whenever you are about to pull off an intense manoeuvre, like a big jump or a flip. Users have the option of capturing these high-octane moments in all of its high-definition glory by allowing Lily to automatically record them in slow motion.

Lily can record a user from as far as a hundred feet, or as close as five feet away.

Best for open spaces

Though Lily’s an impressive new device with a very unique feature, one thing that might stop action camera fanatics from grabbing their wallets is Lily’s lack of collision detection – you can’t use it in any spaces with power lines, trees, or other obstacles (yet).

The developers say it can roughly follow your path, yet there are no guarantees it won’t hit anything along the way. There is some sort of avoiding collisions though – users can simply press a button and Lily will stop and hold its position (before it whacks something).

They were taking pre-orders of only $499 for Lily. The retail price will be $999 when it hits the market early next year.

  1. This drone will change how people shoot videos of themselves in the streets or wherever it is they want to play pranks on others.

    On a serious note though, I think if you can attach the arm band to anything say a remote controlled car, you can shoot videos in places where it would be impossible or unsafe to be in.

  2. A few days ago I read something on this blog about a drone that can actually avoid objects, I’m really looking forward to see if Lily’s creators can add this feature in future models, that would be perfect and essential for a lot of people. But by itself it seems to be a new way to make photography (and even selfies), it seems way more creative and basically the possibilities are endless with this one, let’s wait and see what technology will bring us next.
    Thanks for sharing.

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