We can all agree that outside of the Parrot Anafi announcement, 2019 has been a down year for camera drones. No major releases with DJI targeting 2020. Thankfully Skydio, the makers of the R1, is aiming to change that with an imminent drone announcement.

Throughout the summer, the company has been steadily showing off videos with what looks to be class-leading flight autonomy. If you look closely in one of the videos, you can make out a controller so it looks like we will have flight controls. 

Just how far has Skydio progressed since the R1? Let their videos do the talking:


Consider me intrigued. If you go full internet detective, you’ll notice in the last video; it’s a frameless design. I sense a DJI Mavic competitor. Skydio’s marketing materials crack me up too. Anyone with the guts to take a veiled shot at DJI’s market dominance deserves a tip of the hat. 

skydio new camera drone tease

Yeah, that’s the company’s website. Hey, I like the confidence, and as a camera drone enthusiast, we desperately need a competitive market. It breeds innovation and keeps prices in check. 

In addition to the videos, the company is promising a brand new camera capable of not only stunning video but still photography chops too. Below are images from a Facebook gallery, so let’s not pixel peep them. Until we have RAW files, let’s not nitpick image quality. Exposure, saturation, contrast, etc. can all be fixed in Lightroom. 

skydio image quality
skydio drone image quality example

For JPEGs right off the camera and Facebook’s awful gallery tool, these look promising. Are they Mavic 2 Pro level? We won’t know until we can conduct a series of controlled tests.

One thing we do know is that we are finally getting a new camera drone on the market. Actually, two things. Once Skydio launches, you can be assured DJI will have a response. They did it to GoPro. Here’s hoping Skydio comes to compete. My Christmas wish is for two companies battling it out for consumer drone supremacy.

Gear. TV. Movies. Lifestyle. Photography. Yeah, I’m the type who sees a shiny object and is immediately captivated. Wait... There’s another. You can reach me at marcus@newsledge.com

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