Drone photography is no longer an expensive, inaccessible technology. And if the massive number of consumer drones at the Consumer Electronics Show is any indication, this tech will start making its way into plenty of homes this year.
Flying drones can be a tricky business, and some have delicate sensors or controls that can take a dextrous hand to operate, not to mention a droning partner if you’re wanting to capture yourself in action on camera.
But new technologies are eliminating the need for a controller altogether, and some drones can be pre-programmed to capture your every move.
Hexo+ is one of them, a Kickstarter-funded drone that will be ready for mass consumption this fall. The Daily Dot got to check out the Hexo+ prototype this week at CES in Las Vegas.
— Hexoplus (@hexopluslive) January 7, 2015
The six-propellered Hexo+ is programmed with a smartphone app before it’s ready to fly. Users input where they want the drone to be positioned, whether it should film at the front or the back, and how far away from the body. It will hover in the particular position for 15 minutes while capturing everything on a GoPro attached beneath the device.
Hexo+ can film you in 360-degrees, from almost 200 feet in the air, or right next to your shoulder, even following you as you go on a jog down the beach.
This particular drone isn’t the only pre-programmed follower drone. The AirDog, another crowdfunded project that launched at the same time as the Hexo+, uses your mobile device as a tether and films you for 10-20 minutes of flight time. And 3D Robotics Iris+ drone has a “follow me mode,” that takes over the controls.
Still, Hexo+ does have a bit of an edge up on the competition. The video captured on the GoPro automatically saves to the Hexo+ application, and can be edited and shared with friends directly from your smartphone. The result? Drone selfies will never be easier. The drone will set you back just over $1,000, and you can pre-order Hexo+ now.
While the tech is cool, its impossible not to think of a creepy dystopian future in which drones follow us around automatically, taking photos even if we don’t want them. Sometimes physical controls are a good thing.
Photos by Selena Larson