You’ve never seen a drone that looks like a coffee mug. That is, until you see the LeveTop. What makes this particular quadcopter particularly interesting isn’t necessarily its flight capabilities (though they’re impressive) or its camera (though it’s more than capable of getting the job done). Rather, it’s the fact that the LeveTop almost looks like a thermos when it’s packed away, only to morph into an autonomous and intelligent drone capable of exploring the skies on your behalf.
Undeniably the most noteworthy aspect of the LeveTop is the compact quadruple folding frame. Its vertical, cylindrical shape looks unlike anything else on the market — at least that we’ve seen — and the design is about more than just aesthetics. As LeveTop founder Longway Wang told Forbes, the shape of the drone actually helps it fly a bit more steadily, and of course, makes it more portable, too. When you’re finished using LeveTop, you need only to fold down its wings, and you can grab the body of the drone and be on your merry way — there will be no extruding, fragile parts to speak of. Adding to its portability, the unit weighs less than a pound..
As for the technical specs of the drone, the LeveTop is capable of flying for 20 minutes at a time at speeds of up to 33 miles per hour, and can reach an altitude of 100 meters above the ground. With four brushless motors, it should be able to get air quite quickly and keep tabs on everything it sees, as the drone is outfitted with a 1080p camera with a 4µm pixel size that should be able to take both photos and videos.
The drone also boasts an advanced GPS system that will follow you wherever you go –provided, of course, that you’re carrying your smartphone, which must be synced to the drone to get it to work properly.
Wang is reasonable when it comes to his expectations for the drone. While it’s admittedly not the most powerful nor the most affordable, it is still accessible and useful enough for most drone enthusiasts to get their feet wet.
“The drone industry is just beginning,” he told Forbes. “As A.I. and 5G take shape and become more widespread in a few years, drone performances will improve, and the market will grow bigger.”
And thus far, the LeveTop has met with considerable success. It blew past its initial fundraising goal on Indiegogo, ultimately raising nearly $240,000. And while you should still exercise caution whenever taking part of a crowdfunding project, if the design of the LeveTop has caught your eye, a contribution of $179 should get you one of these drones by July 0f this year.