During this year’s edition of Consumer Electronics Show (CES), drones were the buzzing stars of the show. From palm-sized drones to selfie-taking drones, there was a drone for nearly every occasion.
Ben Wood, representative of CCS Insight, said that drones were arguably the most “hyped product” at CES 2015 with high chances to become perfect presents for this year’s Christmas season as prices were dropping and regulations loosening.
The Consumer Electronics Association, the group that has organized CES gadget show, reported that worldwide drone sales in 2015 should reach $130 million, a 50 percent increase from 2014. Also, in several years, drone production is expected to become a billion-dollar business.
However, drones have currently at least three major drawbacks – safety, privacy concerns and low battery life.
The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) has restricted drone commercial use in the US due to safety concerns. Last year, more than 25 incidents involving drones crashing into aircrafts were recorded. And pilots find it very hard to spot the minuscule unmanned aircrafts.
Other drawback is the privacy issue. Many drones carry a camera that records everything in its way including people who otherwise wouldn’t want to be taped. So, regulators around the world are still not sure how to solve the issue.
The third drawback is low battery life. A company taking part in the CES gadget show claimed that its drone has up to 50 minutes autonomy. However, the best time a drone can get is around 15 to 20 minutes. This limitation applies to both high-end and budget drones.
One of the biggest frustrations with drones is battery life. It’s rare to get more than 15 minutes of use and there seems little prospect of that improving any time soon. For prolonged usage, owners are typically obliged to get additional batteries, which means added cost,”
Mr. Wood explained.
Among the most promising drones at CES was Hexo+, or the “selfie” drone. This drone can fly up to 200 feet above its owner’s head and has an auto-follow feature that allows aerial selfie taking without the help of a second person maneuvering the craft.
Hexo+ can also be set to create an entire storyboard, including zooms and 360 spins (see video below).
Hexo+ also auto-lands when it runs out of batteries.
You need zero skill. In our selfie culture, everyone wants amazing shots of themselves. We want to give users great images,”
said the producers. Hexo+ will retail for $1,149 and can already be pre-ordered.
Image Source: Review Journal