Xiaomi Shakes Up Affordable Drone Segment with its First Drone Output

May 27, 2016, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Chinese manufacturer Xiaomi has announced what could be called their most ambitious project till date – an affordable 4K drone. The new Mi Drone, which comes within $500 range is a direct take on DJI’s Phantom 3, which was labelled as the cheapest drone in the market.

Xiaomi’s Mi Drone will be arriving in two new variants; one with 4K recording, and the other with Full HD recording. The latter is priced at an astonishingly cheap rate of $380, while a 4K upgrade will cost $456 in total. It’s still way less than the cheapest one offered by DJI, which is priced at nearly $800.


Spec-wise, the Mi Drone do features all we can expect in a drone at this price point, and also packs all DJI Phantom 3 features. Powered by four air propellers, the Mi Drone features built-in gimbals that can stabilize the frames even at 2,000 vibrations per second. The sensors used in the device are Sony-made, and users will be given the choice of selecting from a set of cameras.

The company claims an air-time of nearly half hours for a fully charged Mi Drone, and can also travel in under a range of 3kms. It also comes with additional features like automatic circling around a point, auto return, etc.

However, it needs to be seen how well the Mi Drone lives up with what’s said.  The jury is still out on the guaranteed features, including the video footage quality and software traits.

The company’s jump into the drone field also comes at a pivotal point, especially after failing to meet their sales and revenue target in the smartphone industry during last year. The affordability of the devices also puts a question mark on whether Xiaomi can further increase their revenue.

Xiaomi has said that it will the Full HD version that will arrive first, with the pre-orders commencing on Friday. It will be followed by a closed beta of the 4K version.

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