Is DJI Preparing a Halloween Camera Drone Surprise?

DJI Mavic Mini release date

With the DJI Mavic Mini confirmed thanks to FCC filings, all eyes are on possible release dates. Right now, two dates are battling it out on various rumor sites and twitter accounts. Either pencil in your calendar for October 28 or possibly October 30. Either way, it’ll be the last week of October.

If I had to pick a date, I’d lean more towards the October 28 based solely on the fact it gives the company some space away from Halloween. They can still incorporate it into an event, but it allows DJI to take full advantage of owning a news cycle before everyone starts hammering out Halloween content. 

What is the DJI Mavic Mini?

DJI has essentially pushed the Spark off its store with just parts remaining for sale, so the Mavic Mini is positioned to grab the Spark’s old slot. It will be marketed as a beginner drone, but based on leaks, I’d lean towards the specs rivaling that of the Mavic Air. Especially when it comes to the camera. 

DJI seems to enjoy borrowing the 12MP sensor found in the original Mavic, and expectations are for the Mavic Mini to do the same while shooting 4K video at 30fps. Yeah, no 4K60p. We all have to wait until January and the next-generation Mavic Pro.

DJI Mavic Mini and Drone Registration

The headline feature DJI will trumpet at the event is likely to be the weight of the drone. Or the lack of it. DJI boxed itself out of releasing a flagship camera drone in 2019 due to its upcoming AirSense technology, which will include ADS-B receivers on all drones weighing more than 250 grams manufactured after January 1, 2020.

How much will the Mini weigh? 245 grams. That weight also has the benefit of avoiding registration requirements with the FAA. Yeah, the very small barrier to entry into the hobby will be circumvented. 

It’s an open question on whether that’s a solid strategy to openly poke federal regulators. DJI’s 2019 hasn’t exactly been stellar with the federal government thanks to the trade war and a few public spats with various agencies, including DHS. We will have to wait and see how regulators react, but with an election year hitting, DJI should have a path to push marketing around the fact consumers can fly out of the box. 

That is the latest on the Mavic Mini. It’s not a flagship, but we all know the capabilities of the company’s 12MP sensor. It’s been impressing us for years, and it’s likely to keep it up thanks to a sub $500 price tag. Keep us bookmarked for the latest camera drone news and rumors.

The Gist
An email newsletter that gets to the point. Crazy idea, right? Sign up today.
The Gist is a few days a week newsletter. No incessant emails. We hate them and that's way too much work.
Share via
Copy link