Parrot has developed the first ever consumer ready fixed wing drone – the new Parrot Disco drone, and its feature set is as impressive as how it looks. Parrot was the first company to bring consumer drones to market with the original AR Drone, and that continues to be their bread and butter as they’ve added drone (RC) toys, as well as slightly more professional grade drones as well. This new drone is exciting for two big reasons – it’s the first of its kind and it features a nearly 45 minute flight time on autopilot.
The Parrot Disco drone is the first that looks somewhat similar to the military Predator drone – with a long flat wing, a front facing camera and a single backwards facing propeller. Inside, it has a variety of sensors including an accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer, barometer, Pitot (measures airspeed) and GPS that enable it to fly autonomously. Takeoff is simple, you hold it and toss it into the sky – it instantly recognizes it’s taking off, powers up the propeller and climbs into the sky. Once it’s in air, you can have it fly on it’s own and enjoy a birds eye view from the ground by wearing a pair of FPV Glasses, or you can take control of the flight using their Parrot Skycontroller (or RC controller). The built-in 14MP camera shoots 14MP, and naturally 1080p video.
With a max speed of 80km/h, it might be easy to predict some issues with the Disco drone – however, Parrot’s autopilot steps in to prevent you from doing any maneuvers that may result in your drone crashing into the ground. Sorry Top Gun, you’ve got to play within the rules on this one! Premiering at CES 2016, they say that it should be available to the public very soon and also come with a launch preview trailer of the device in action – needless to say, it looks amazing.
CES 2016 Parrot Disco Drone Trailer