Drone Wars

Back for round 3, I see. Blog 3 is going to go in a different direction from my first two, and focus on an aspect of social media and digital business that I am extremely interested in, drones. Sit back relax and enjoy the show…or blog.

Background

Many of us know of drones. We hear about them all the time in the news, with respect to their military capabilities. Drones, have given our military an added dimension they did not have before the war on terror. However, their are other capabilities that drones have, specifically in terms of personal and commercial use. Commercially, Amazon has made popular the idea of delivering packages with the use of drones, but unfortunately this is more of a dream then a reality at the current moment. However, drone technology for personal use has expanded exponentially over the past few years.

The Competition

As drone prices have dropped significantly over the last few years, consumers have been able to obtain them at a more frequent rate. Many of us assume that drones are some crazy, eccentric toy, but they can be found for under 60$. With this ease of access, many people have purchased drones for their own personal use. One use of drones that many people are attracted to, are their ability to capture high quality video. Many are using drones for this, whether it be a regular youtuber, trying to take a cool panoramic spot, or Michael Bay using one to shoot an action sequence in his newest movie.

And with this, two companies have emerged as leaders in the drone industry, DGI and GoPro. Both of which are creating high quality drones, that record great video, for the consumer and public alike.  Specifically, both of these companies just released their newest drone creations within a week of each other, sparking a race to the top in the drone industry.

GoPro

Many of you know of GoPro. The American technology company founded in 2002 by Nick Woodman. They have been know for their action cameras and recently developed their first mobile app and video editing software. However, recently GoPro has decided to launch its first drone to date, the GoPro Karma. GoPro sensed a shift in the marketplace regarding recording video, and decided to pounce on the newly presented opportunity. With that the GoPro Karma was born.

GoPro is pitching their drone Karma as “more than a drone”. The reason being that it can plug into GoPro’s exhaustive selection of accessories, and it’s community of GoPro enthusiasts that has been developed. For example, Karma’s gimbal can be removed and attached to the included Karma Grip, for shake-free handheld recording. The Karma Grip, can then be attached to your existing GoPro mounts via the included Karma Mounting Ring. Karma works with older Hero 4 cameras, and the tiny new Hero 5 Session when it ships in the Spring of 2017. GoPro has also been investing heavily in its new Quik app, and GoPro Plus subscription service. Therefore, users can access, edit, and share their GoPro footage from anywhere. This kind of compatibility will be very tempting to people who’ve gone all-in on GoPro cameras and accessories over the last decade.

 

DJI

Unlike GoPro, I bet many of you have never heard of DJI. Dà-Jiāng Innovations Science and Technology Co., Ltd  is a Chinese technology company founded in 2006 by Frank Wang and headquartered in Shenzhen, Guangdong. It manufactures unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) for aerial photography and videography, gimbals, flight platforms, cameras, propulsion systems, camera stabilizers, and flight controllers. According to many sources, the company has been at the forefront of the civilian-drone industry. Most recently DJI released it’s newest drone, the DJI Mavic. The Mavic is DJI’s most light weight and compact drone to date. Competing directly with GoPro Karma.

The Mavic is lighter, it folds up smaller, it flies faster, and farther, and longer on a single charge then it’s competitor. It features a wider range of image capture, and packs more intelligent flight modes including follow-me, obstacle-avoidance, and gesture-control which will certainly be missed by GoPro’s sporty demographic. The Mavic Pro costs $749 without the controller, as it can be controlled with a smartphone, or $999 with it . The Karma costs $799 for the drone and controller, or $1,099 bundled with the GoPro Hero 5 Black to match the Mavic’s built-in camera. DJI also has a 10-year head start making drones, as they have been in the business far longer then GoPro has.

Verdict

Both drones shoot 4K video, can fold up to carry in a backpack, and both feature a gimbal with 3-axis stabilization. Both are similarly priced at around $1,000 depending upon options. But, when you dig deeper into the boring specs, I believe  it’s clear that the DGI Mavic is the superior option.

knockout

*DJI Mavic with the swift knockout of the GoPro Karma*

Future of Drones

Drone technology has a great future, besides there enormous potential for expanded military, personal, and commercial use, the drone industry is poised to explode. Specifically commercial drones that are GPS-enabled with really advanced autopilot that can handle all aspects of a flight, from takeoff to landing, are the future. These quite simple machines could have huge implications that shake up multiple industries across the USA or around the world. However, the Government would need to place safe regulation in a pro-active manner instead of their traditional reactive state. Amazon’s pie in the sky idea may have first sparked people’s interest, but drone’s have a safe and steady future moving forward.

dro-10-27-14

THE END

Later fam, hope to see you in our next encounter…until next time though.

door

 

6 comments

  1. cattybradley · ·

    Informative post – I had never heard of DJI before this. I think the videos were interesting – Go Pro’s video was very much adventure oriented whereas the DJI video went into the specifics about the drone itself and the technology. I agree with you that the possibilities for drones are large. It will be interesting to see how they are adopted and integrated into daily life.

  2. mikeknoll98 · ·

    Great Post, I could not agree more with your thoughts about drone use in the military. Any option we have to remove troops from harms way is a good option. Also I have never heard of DIj but your points have convinced me to look into it along with GoPro’s Karma if I ever go drone shopping.

    1. mikeknoll98 · ·

      Also, I see GoPro advertisements everywhere on Facebook and Twitter, I wonder If Dij is just targeting a different audience or if they are not using those platforms.

  3. Nice post! I confess that I’ve been fascinated with the rise of drone technology and its potential business applications.

  4. fernaneq4 · ·

    Just thinking of all the drone footage in the new BC videos. My friends from home are now visiting me based on those videos! It’s amazing the capabilities of both GoPro and DJI’s drone. I too had never heard of DJI but I have never been in the market for drones. In 2014, DJI was the leader in the drone market and the drone market is only expected to increase from $1.4 billion to $5 billion next year. That being said, GoPro has a loyal following (including myself) and if I ever am shopping for a drone I’m more likely to purchase GoPro than DJI because I’m brand loyal. I’m curious to see how GoPro will change the drone market just as it did the action camera market! Great post!
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  5. I wonder about the drone market’s potential — it seems to be that as of right now, many people just need to know 1 or 2 friends with a drone in order to get the use out of it that they need or want. It will be interesting to see how business’ use them in the future. Nice post.

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