Now that quadcopter drones are hotter than fire itself, most manufacturers are racing each other to make drones that are bigger, faster, and more technologically advanced than ever before. But not every UAV company is running in the same race. While industry bigwigs like Parrot and DJI duke it out to be the biggest and the baddest, Axis Drones is going in the other direction — making quadcopters that get smaller and smaller with each new generation.
The company’s latest release is a little drone called Aerius — and when we say “little” we mean really, really little. Measuring just three centimeters long, three centimeters wide, and two centimeters tall; the drone’s footprint isn’t much bigger than a quarter.
Despite this minuscule size, Aerius actually boasts some impressive specs. Under the hood, it’s got a lot of the same stuff you’d find inside a drone 100 times this size — including adjustable flight control sensitivity, 6-axis gyroscopic stabilization, LED lights, intelligent orientation control, and a set of pre-programmed aerial tricks that can be executed at the push of a button.
The drone’s small size does limit battery size, though. The onboard 3.7v 80 mAh battery will only get you about 5-7 minutes of total flight time, but unlike bigger batteries, it also recharges in just 15 minutes, which isn’t too bad. As for range, Aerius boasts a 2.4 gHz transceiver, which means it can theoretically go just as far away from the controller as DJI’s Phantom drones — though you’ll probably have trouble spotting the tiny bastard if you fly it too far.
And the best part? Because Aerius is so damn small and simple, it costs a fraction of what most drones do. You can pick one up (in the color of your choice, no less) for just 35 bucks — and that includes the flight controller. Pre-orders opened up earlier this week, and Axis expects to begin shipping in the next couple months.