On a day that saw Parrot announce the Anafi FPV, DJI has been doing some quiet Labor Day cleaning on the company’s website and storefront.
An interesting piece of DJI Phantom 4 Pro news is up thanks to the web team over at DJI. Before, the product was simply out of stock. Today? It’s not available in my region (United States). The same holds true for the Phantom 4 Advanced.
And it’s not the only product line getting hit with website updates. The DJI Spark is another that has all but disappeared from the site outside of accessories.
Then there are the product rumors. Yeah, we are getting more Osmo products and potentially a new Mavic. Let’s dive in.
What Happened to the DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0?
That’s the major unknown though most attributed it to issues in the supply chain. A corruption scandal didn’t help the company’s cause, and since last year, the Phantom flagship has been missing in action. Now it’s completely gone.
Three possible explanations. The first is the company may be building stock, but that can be discounted due to them leaving an out-of-stock notice up for months. A second is the rumored mothballing of the Phantom project. I’m not sure I buy that explanation, but we’ll get to that. And finally, DJI wants to start cleaning the storefront in preparation for new product launches.
New Phantom 4 Pro V2.0 Production? A rumor which had been circulating the internet involved the production of the P4P starting up again in time for the holidays. The new splash page on the website should put that to bed. Trade war or no trade war, the P4P going unavailable in the United States region means it’s done.
Will there be a DJI Phantom 5? The same rumors hinting at the P4P production also claimed the Phantom line was dead. That may be the case, but there are strong hints the Phantom line is alive and well.
The first is money. The Mavic 2 Pro comfortably sits in the old Phantom 4 price range. If you want to step up, it’s the Inspire 2 plus a very long explanation to your significant other on why you needed a camera drone which costs a minimum of $5000.
What the Mavic 2 Pro has done is create an avenue for DJI to place a Phantom 5 in the $2000-$2500 range. Before you balk at never paying that for a camera drone, let’s remember a basic full-frame camera costs in the same range. And last time I checked, a mirrorless camera can’t sprout wings and fly. Though give Sony time. The margins would be incredible for DJI.
Second is demand. Yes, the Mavic 2 line is the go-to flagship camera drone. However, portability comes at a cost. The one-inch sensor on the Mavic 2 Pro is hampered by heat, and the full potential is never fully realized. A Phantom 5 solves that issue with a bigger frame. Add in the rumored interchangeable lenses, and you have one hell of a portable and professional solution.
People have been clamoring for it. It stands to reason DJI will deliver. Just in the new year when AirSense comes online for all drones above 250 grams.
Where is the DJI Spark?
If the region unavailability message for the Phantoms was a signal change was coming, the removal of the Spark from the DJI store and its buy buttons from its splash page are a clear sign DJI is moving away from the Spark. But don’t worry, DJI does have a product waiting in the wings.
Is the Mavic Mini the DJI Spark Replacement? You’ve seen the pictures and the details on the Mavic Mini. With the change on DJI’s website, it feels like the company is consolidating brands under a few names with multiple products over multiple product names. It’s easier to market, and from a brand standpoint, it makes sense.
The rumors of it weighing under 250 grams get around DJI’s self-imposed moratorium of flagship camera drone launches. The company could quickly get it to market in time for Christmas.
What’s Next for the DJI Osmo?
2019 has been a good year for Osmo fans. We have seen the launch of the Osmo Pocket, Action, and Mobile 3. Could we be looking at one more Osmo announcement? Rumors say yes, and you only have to look at the current slate of Osmo products to see an opportunity.
Will there be a new Osmo+? The Osmo pocket proved DJI could pack a lot of camera into a small package. The next step is optical zoom. DJI had the Osmo+, and it’s beyond old. Some hints have the Osmo Pocket gaining a bit in size and add a zoom lens.
Where is the professional Osmo? Another avenue DJI is expected to explore is a prosumer or professional-grade Osmo. Let’s assume the company didn’t buy a controlling stake in Hasselblad for the fun of it. It has serious photography pedigree, and outside of the Mavic 2 Pro, we haven’t seen much of a crossover. A professional-grade Osmo could be the next collaboration (perhaps a Phantom 5). Plus, leaving the Osmo Cinema name lying about is too tempting.
When is the Next DJI Mavic Releasing?
2020. That’s a hard date. There will be no release of a flagship camera drone – Mavic or Phantom – before January 1, 2020. DJI has confirmed this due to the AirSense technology rolling out with products able to receive ADS-B signals from surrounding aircraft. Any rumor to the contrary is flat out wrong.
What will the new DJI Mavic feature? I’d expect a tick-tock upgrade similar to an iPhone. A complete overhaul of the internals. Better battery life. Camera. Safety features. The works. It will keep the same design but expect the next generation of Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom to be refined with the latest tech. And hopefully 4K60p.
One design change which will change is if there happens to be a second-generation Mavic Air. The Mavic Mini leaks show DJI wanting to streamline the design. This would leave the Air as the design oddity amongst the Mavic lineup. It could be the Mavic Mini pulls double duty as a Spark replacement and as the next generation of the Air, but DJI likes the $999 price point. I’d consider a Mavic Air 2 more likely than not.
And that wraps up DJI heading into September. Yeah, there’s not much in the way of good news from those wanting a new drone, but 2020 holds a lot of promise. Until then, watch for additional Osmo launches and perhaps a Mavic Mini on our horizon.