Parrot MiniDrones: The Best Gift Your Parents Never Gave You
13 different MiniDrones to chose from
Have you ever asked your parents for a remote control vehicle for Christmas? Did you ever get what you wanted? If you did, you were one of the lucky ones. Me? I always got one with the wire attached. The wire was only two feet long, so you had to run with it. It could not turn either, except in one direction when in reverse. These were the worst “RC” vehicles ever. Pure disappointment. The next step up was better, but not by much. I have friends that can recall similar holiday experiences. What were our parents thinking?
It was those memories that made me lose interest in RC vehicles all together. That is until just recently, after being introduced to the Parrot MiniDrones.
There are 13 drones available on the Parrot MiniDrone team that can maneuver on land, in the air, or on water! (though not all three at once).
Jumping ‘Night’ (Land): Diesel, Buzz and Marshall
Jumping ‘Race’ (Land): Max, Tuk-Tuk and Jett
All ‘Jumping’ drones are set on large wheels and can race around on the ground while taking snapshots or video of their paths. The Night drones have LEDs for running at night, while the Race versions can reach twice the speed. Oh, and they do jump!
Airborne ‘Night’ (Air): Blaze, Swat and Maclane
Airborne ‘Cargo’ (Air): Travis and Mars
The ‘Airborne’ drones fly, of course. These bad boys are set up with a 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope and are capable of aerial acrobatics! They do not take video, but they do have snapshot capabilities. The Night models have LEDs like their land-bound brethren, and the Cargo variant can carry around small objects like figurines or toy bricks. I would love to see those old-fashioned paratrooper toys get some use again!
Hydrofoils (Air AND water): Orak and Newz
The Hydrofoil drones are miniature speedboats that have a snapshot camera. The cool thing about them, is that when you remove the nautical structure they can fly as well!
Something to note is the battery life on the MiniDrones (Jumping, Airborne, Hydrofoils) varies. The ‘Airborne’ drones battery-life lasts around 10 minutes, whereas the ‘Jumping’ drones last over two times that. It may be worth picking up an additional battery pack regardless of which one you get.
The drones are all operated through an application you download to your smartphone or tablet. The application, called FreeFlight 3, is very intuitive and easy to get use to. The coolest part about it is that when you register your drone, you are enrolled into the Drone Academy. DA keeps track of all of your data from each flight. You can see videos and snapshots that others have made public, as well as post some of your own. We live in Florida so I spent some time viewing the amazing beach scenes that other academy members have uploaded.
Desirai and I agreed on getting the Airborne Night model Maclane. We charged it up, updated the firmware, and took it to the backyard to test it out. I played with all of the functions I thought it had. (I later found out that it could do flips in mid-air and a Freefall Takeoff. ALWAYS watch the tutorials! I bet you’ll learn something new.) I piloted 4 flights and took a number of aerial pictures (the camera is under the drone). The Maclane was easy to maneuver and withstood all the punishment that a noob pilot could put it through… even when it met my tree. I still had a lot of fun with it.
If you’re considering buying a remote control vehicle for someone in your life, consider a Parrot MiniDrone. It may cost a little more, but the recipients passion, interest, and happiness are worth it. Don’t buy those cheap RC cars for anyone as a gift. Don’t pay for disappointment. I’ll be sure to 1-up my dad in that respect. Perhaps I’ll get him a Parrot MiniDrone for Christmas.
All of these MiniDrones can be purchased online at the official Parrot site (where to buy).
Which one of these awesome drones would you grab for your techie? Let us know in the comments below!