Top Drones that Follow You with Photography and Videography Capability
Greetings and salutations to all the dronies of the world! We bring to you yet another marvelous piece of writing that will prove to be instrumental in helping you know your favorite Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) commonly referred to as Drones in greater depths. This article is geared towards providing you some valuable insight into drones that follow you as if they were part of your carnal being and could not stay away from you even for a millisecond.
Brief Introduction about Follow You (or Follow Me) Technology
Our motive has always been to give you ample knowledge and awareness in order to quench your thirst for wanting to know more and more about different kinds of drones that are being produced by manufacturers the world over. We ourselves happen to be avid drone aficionados who deal with drones like bread and butter. So, we are well aware of your desires, wishes and curiosities with regard to these fantastic machines. In this context, we took it upon ourselves to bring to you the most updated and authentic information regarding drones that you won’t be able to find anywhere on the world wide web; that we promise you with great certainty! A vast majority of drones that are being manufactured by the tech giants such as Yuneec, DJI, PowerVision, Parrot and many others include the incredible Follow Me feature; and that is what we want to discuss with you in great detail today.
There won’t be many among you who will be familiar with the Follow Me feature that is being integrated in a wide variety of drones produced these days. So, first things first, for the beginners who have just set their first step into the mind-boggling world of drones, we are going to delve into the details of what the Follow Me feature actually is and what does it mean with respect to drones. The Follow Me mode has been specifically designed for the drone junkies who are interested in photography and videography drones. However, keep one thing in mind, this mode presents endless possibilities and defies the boundaries of imagination. So, if you are creative and have a knack for innovation, this mode will keep feeding you a plethora of video footages and photographs to your satisfaction. By virtue of this unbelievable feature, a pilot is able to focus the direction and motion of the drone relative to a certain object which is also in motion simultaneously with the drone. Once the target object has been locked, the drone follows the target autonomously without being controlled by the dronie. Generally, this is accomplished with the help of the autopilot capability alongside a set of sensors and target and lock software. This fabulous feature enables the drone pilot to concentrate on the photography and videography parts of the task instead of worrying about controlling the drone while the drone follows the target object without any guidance or instructions autonomously.
Top Drones that Follow You
1 – Hubsan H502S
Hubsan H502S is the first drone on our exhaustive list that includes the amazing Follow Me feature. Some of you might have come across the low-end low cost drones produced by the manufacturer Hubsan. Their devices have been able to gain traction with the drone buffs and have proved to be quite successful with regard to performance, cost and features. Following their tradition, Hubsan have recently launched a toy drone that boasts the Follow Me feature. Hubsan H502S is the first brushed mini quadcopter that comes with an integrated Global Positioning System (GPS) and First Person View (FPV) camera that allows live and smooth video transmission. In reality, it is not a self-following drone but it does have the Follow Me mode. Though the prime purpose of this guide is to discuss the Follow Me functionality in a number of drones but since we’ve started discussing this wonderful drone, let’s just let you know a few of the brilliant specifications and features that this drone has been blessed with. It features the headless mode, GPS (as mentioned above), Altitude mode (the drone gets locked to a certain altitude while letting the pilot to focus on the aerial photography and videography aspects), Failsafe mode (the drone autonomously lands in case the battery gets alarmingly low) and automatic calibration. What’s more you ask! Hubsan H502S is powered by a superb 7.4V 2S 610 mAh Li-Po battery which provides a flight duration of 13 minutes. And the list of all these fine features goes on and on. It has a 720p camera and a First Person View real time video transmission directly to a 4.3” FPV LCD display which comes in the original packaging. All the above mentioned features render the Hubsan H502S drone a remarkable Follow Me device that comes at an impressively affordable price.
2 – Cheerson CX-22
Cheerson is yet another reliable manufacturer of drones in the market and have been able to attract the attention of a number of drone enthusiasts due to its low cost models. One of its drones, the Cheerson CX-20, was able to gain widespread popularity in the drone world because of its features and affordable price. Just a year ago, in 2015, Cheerson launched an upgraded version of CX-20 and named it Cheerson CX-22. This new machine comes with double battery power and also includes the magnificent Follow Me feature. As a matter of fact, this drone has been specifically designed to target the competition that is prevailing among drones with the Follow Me function. Cheerson CX-22 features some tremendous attributes such as the Dual Global Positioning System (one GPS is integrated into the drone while the other is attached to the controller), automatic positioning system, GPS fixed set high, One-Key home return, autonomous landing and takeoff, out-of-control return and circle hovering. In addition to all these majestic features, CX-22 also features a 1080p resolution camera alongside 5.7 GHz real time video transmission which is relayed to a 7” monitor integrated on the controller. All these are included in the original packaging. The camera is attached to a dual axis brushless gimbal and it is also bundled in the original purchase. Besides all these superb features and state-of-the-art technology, the CX-22 offers an incredible 800 meters control range and flight duration of whopping 25 minutes. The drone is powered by a 3S 11.1V 5400mAh battery. It surely is one of the best drones out there that comes at a reasonable price and boasts features that will blow your mind away. Pretty tough to beat this one on a number of counts.
3 – Blade Chroma
Yet another player in the drone manufacturing industry is Blade and they have developed quite a reputation over the years of producing some top quality, feature-rich and extremely powerful unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) which have given the competitors a run for their money. Blade have been endeavoring to improve upon the technology in terms of a number of features including but not limited to powerful motors, steady circling hover, automated pilot and better quality cameras for capturing aerial photographs and video footages. One of their flagship devices is Blade Chroma which boasts the above mentioned features in addition to numerous other capabilities that render it the status of one of the best drones available in the market. This amazing drone is being sold in the market as a variety of bundles such as a CGO3 4K camera, CGO2+ 1080p camera or another package includes a 3-axis gimbal for a sophisticated GoPro camera. By virtue of its ST10+ transmitter, a pilot can tweak the angle of the camera remotely. This transmitter also comes integrated with a First Person View monitor which displays real time video transmission seamlessly. The transmitter also has an inbuilt ON Screen Display (OSD). Some of the salient features of this fabulous drone include smart mode, AP mode (designed specifically for the veterans), Follow Me mode, tracking mode, Return to Base mode, flight boundaries which can be adjusted as per requirement and top-of-the-line Safe Plus technology. To put the cherry on the cake, the device offers an astounding 30 minutes of flight duration while the control range is high as 400 meters. Pretty impressive, eh?
4 – Autel Robotics X-Star Premium
Autel Robotics have come up with this superb device which is very user-friendly, provides a tremendous flight experience and includes myriad features. Its most exciting feature if the Follow Me mode which can utilized by the drone fans whenever they go for a hike, a skiing adventure, scale a mountain, or take some time out of their busy routines to for kayaking. Even if you are sunbathing on a beach or surfing, spending some time kite watching or biking on a dirt track, you can ask your drone to follow you everywhere you go and capture your videos in 4K ultra-high definition resolution. Integrated with a 4K ultra high definition camera alongside 108 degrees Field of View (FOV) feature. With such an exquisite camera, you can capture video footages at 4K30, 2.7K60, 1080p 120 or 720p 240 and take high quality photographs at 12 megapixels. Isn’t it awesome?
5 – 3DR IRIS +
3D Robotics brings to yet another magnificent drone which is one of its kind in terms of power, quality, solidity, durability, reliability and comes with the ever-attractive autonomous flight features. This is a fantastic drone that has been built with an aim to cover sporting events such as skiing, surfing, snowboarding, biking, hiking, swimming and plenty more. Accuracy and speed are the greatest attributes of the Follow Me feature of this fantastic device that make it follow the target object with excellent precision and at an optimum speed required for covering the desired event. 3DR Iris+ can be controlled remotely via an Android or iOS smartphone, tablet or any other compatible handheld device through an app or via a nine-channel radio transmitter. Moreover, accurate telemetry integrated into the transmitter provides highly precise data related to the flight. If you want the Iris+ to resort to autonomous flight mode, it also comes with the cutting-edge 3PV Follow Me mode, and you’ll watch it transformed into a self-controlled cinematography crew. The 3DR Iris+ includes an iLook+ 720p camera that has been developed by the 3D Robotics themselves. In addition, its ability to accommodate both GoPro Hero3 and Hero4 further add to feathers to its already stuffed hat. Ease of user is another area where this fabulous drone is ahead of many of its competitors. Even if you are a novice looking to learn the art and science of aerial photography and cinematography, you can still try your hands on this cool drone and get lots of benefits from it. Its salient features include Mission Planner (a variant of auto-pilot), very powerful 32-bit Pixhawk autonomous flight system built on ARM Cortex-M4 processor, integrated GPS (GPS allows the device to use the pro mission capabilities programmed at the time of manufacture). Some of the pre-programmed features of the internal GPS include area mapping, videography according to programmed set of instructions, scientific research and analyses and other fields which require UAVs to follow flight patterns that can be replicated on a continuous basis.
6 – DJI Phantom 3 Professional
This one is the most famous and popular drone in the drone community all over the world and there aren’t many in this community who have not heard or watched this spectacular machine take flight. As evident from the nomenclature, this is the third device in the DJI’s Phantom series. It is, beyond any shred of doubt, the most successful commercial drone to have hit the shelves. However, the development of this wonderful drone presented a steep challenge to the drone kings who had to face plenty of technological hurdles in an attempt to manufacture their own high quality camera for the first time. And they ended up with a tremendous innovation: a 4K (or 2.7K) camera that shoots videos at 30 frames per second and captures photographs at 12 megapixels and is placed on a 3-axis gimbal that can be controlled seamlessly from an unimaginably high range. The camera also comes with a f/2.8 lens with a field of view (FOV) that spans around 94 degrees. What’s more? There’re are plenty of more features such as a circling hover that is assisted by a state-of-the-art GPS system, a vision positioning system, automated flight logging, Follow Me mode, altitude set height, return-to-base, autonomous flight and first person view. The device can controlled either by means of a DJI Devo remote controller or via a handheld mobile device that is operated by an app available for both Android and iOS mobile operating platforms. In addition to all these scintillating characteristics, the DJI Phantom 3 Professional provides an astonishing flight duration of 23 minutes and is powered by a smart battery. The machine sports a control range of 2km to 5km.
7 – Walkera Voyager 3
Voyager 3 is Walkera’s multi-tasking device that includes a wide range of features to enhance your aerial photography and videography. A modular design of the quadcopter’s arms enables them to move in multiple direction and attain disparate positions. This feature proves to be extremely beneficial for amateur as well as professional cinematographers. This drone includes its own HD 4608 x 3456 megapixels 1080p 60 frames per second camera, that is capable of capturing some really top quality images and video footages. The machine also includes a lot of attractive and formidable features such as Global Positioning System (GPS), GLONASS Dual Navigation System, single key takeoff and landing, one key return-to-home and finally the splendid Follow Me mode. Voyager 3 drone offers an optimum control range of 1 Km and an impressive flight time of no less than 25 minutes. The machine is operated by a couple of 29.6V 3000 mAh 10C(8S) LiPo batteries. The original package of this badass drone also includes a DEVO F12E, 12-channels transmitter that operates in the 2.4GHz frequency band. The remote controller also contains a 5 inch First Person View (FPV) monitor that displays uninterrupted live video streaming directly from the drone’s camera.
8 – 3D Robotics Solo
The 3D Robotics have released this amazing drone which is unique in terms of its power, features and reliability. What sets it apart from the rest of the pack is its unbelievable top speed of 89 kilometers per hour which can be of immense benefit when used in tandem with the Follow Me mode. This combination of high speed and Follow Me mode allows the pilot to lock the device on fast moving target objects such as cars, motorbikes, motor boats etc. Besides, the photography and videography features bundled in this superb device include Selfie Mode, Orbit Mode and obviously the Follow Me mode. The Pixhawk 2 auto-pilot capability is an innovative feature that adds another dimension to the autonomous flight paradigm. Despite all these exclusive features, there is a bad news. The original packaging of these machine does not come with a camera. But it provides support for all the latest GoPro cameras such as GoPro Hero3, Hero3+ and Hero4 owing to the 3-axis gimbal that furnishes pivotal support to the camera and ensures that the camera remains steady while capturing images and video footages. The remote control range is around 800 meters while the flight duration lies in the range between 20 and 25 minutes. The 3DR Solo features a transmitter that includes an integrated WiFi so that you stay connected with your drone all the time without any interruption. In addition, the remote controller also includes an inbuilt HDMI port for live streaming of your GoPro HD video footage. Moreover, the 1 GHz processor is able to save your flight logs automatically in relation to about 500 variables to the drones internal memory.
9 – Hexo+
This tremendous beast of a drone is the only hexacopter that has been able to make a spot in our coveted list. It has power, features and everything that you could ask for in a drone with autonomous flight features. The manufacturers have strived really hard to improve the Follow Me feature in the device and has been designed specifically with the Follow Me feature in mind so that device follows you wherever you may go. The pilot is able to communicate with the drone via a handheld device operated by an application designed for both the iOS and Android platforms. The drone follows the signal transmitted by your mobile device be it a tablet, a cell phone or something else. The dronies can configure different directions of the camera using the Android or iOS app and can take images or shoot videos. The autopilot feature removes the onus of flying the drone from the shoulders of the pilot. Another cool feature of this drone is its high speed. It can attain speeds as high as 70 kilometers per hour.
10 – DJI Inspire 1 V2.0
The Inspire 1 V2.0 is the top-of-the-line machine by DJI that boasts a modular/transformative design; meaning thereby that the arms can move in different directions and acquire multiple positions. The transformative design makes this device extremely useful for professional videographers. The camera included in the Inspire 1 V2.0 is omnidirectional and offers 4K video footage and takes images at 12 megapixel. The camera can be controlled via a transmitter remotely using a free app available for both the iOS and Android platforms. In addition, the device also includes features such as Follow Me mode, autonomous flight feature, Global Positioning System, aerodynamic modular design, Fail Safe mode, circular hover without requiring the GPS, application based control software, maps and radar, interactive return to base, First Person View and many other attractive features. It is indubitably one of the best drones in the market to capture very high quality images and videos. The machine boasts an amazing control range of 4.5 kilometers while its flight duration is about 20 minutes. The device is powered by a TB48 Intelligent Flight 5700 mAh battery.
11 – Lily
This drone is an ideal throw and go flying device that is waterproof and includes the self-flying feature. You just have to put the dedicated standalone gadget that comes with the drone in your pocket and the drone will track it following you to every nook and cranny that you scour. The drone comes with an integrated camera that supports 1080p high definition video footages at 60 frames per second (FPS) in addition to slow motion recording at 720p and 120 frames per second. The camera also offers support to capture photographs at 12 megapixels. Being very light in weight, the device can be carried anywhere because of its portability. It is especially equipped to cover underwater events since it is waterproof. Despite all these good news, here’s a harrowing news: it’s not available on Amazon but it’s definitely one of the best drones that follow you. Don’t worry we have mentioned an alternative drone of lily as below.
12 – Yuneec Typhoon H
The presence of six motors in the Yuneec Typhoon H make it a hexacopter that is dedicated to professional state-of-the-art aerial photography and cinematography. Of course, it comes with the Follow Me feature and the camera that comes along with it renders the Follow Me experience unforgettable. The camera is able to capture video footages at 4K ultra high definition with a frame rate of 30 frames per second or at 1080p with a frame rate of 120 frames per second. For still photography, the camera is 12 MP while the 3-axis gimbal ensures that the videos and images are captured by a camera that stays steady and rotates all around the park. The drone comes with inbuilt autopilot modes, team mode, ST16 multi-feature transmitter, orbit me, point-of-interest mode, journey mode also called as the selfie mode, interactive return to base and obstacle avoidance mechanism which functions flawlessly with the Follow Me mode. This amazing device offers a remote control range of around 1600 meters alongside a flight duration of approximately 25 minutes.
13 – DJI Phantom 4
The latest addition to the much heralded Phantom series by DJI is their Phantom 4 quadcopter. The user-friendliness of the device and an incredible range of features have already transformed this machine into a phenom! It has been designed as a completely self-flying beast that includes a splendid camera and features that will make the dronies lick their lips with desire and in anticipation to get their hands on this much vaunted badass rockstar. The Phantom 4 comes with a camera that is second to none; it offers photographs at 12 megapixels, videos at 4K and 1080p resolutions, 94 degrees Field of View and a 3-axis gimbal that ensures that the camera remains steady while taking images and shooting videos. The DJI have instilled so much of cutting edge technology in this camera that it is able to look in the eyes of the GoPro Hero4 and may probably be able to defeat it at certain fronts. It certainly is a great choice for professional grade aerial photography and cinematography. It obviously includes the Follow Me feature which functions seamlessly (that’s why it is on our list), a collision avoidance system containing high quality obstacle sensors, Tap Fly feature (just tap a location on the map being displayed on your mobile handheld device and the drone will make its way to exactly that spot), Dual satellite based positioning system, vision positioning system and of course the autonomous flight capability. This drone is actually a full-blown machine for commercial drone technology and features arms that can be folded. The folding arms make it easy to carry it anywhere you want. You just have to keep it in your backpack and off you go! This device contains the most recently released hardware and software and despite all these high tech features, the team engineers in DJI are dedicated to bringing about changes in its performance, power and features. It is very easy to handle and the software if very intuitive and user-friendly. This one is surely the best one out there!
14 – AirDog
And finally, we have reached the top spot and it has been captured by this fantastic machine known by the name of AirDog. It is famous for its ability to seamlessly cover action sports. The main purpose behind its creation was to use it to capture images and videos related to action sports. This one is not at all difficult to fly, offers a magnificent flying experience and comes with all the necessary features to capture each and every minute of your exciting sports adventures without any hassle. It has the inbuilt autonomous flight feature and hence does all the hard work all by itself; while you just do your stuff. So, whether you are playing football, skiing, riding your bike, hiking, fishing, driving your car etc., all it has to do is to follow the AirLeash device and take some mind-boggling images and shoot stupendous video footages. Here’s another interesting fact for you: the AirDog does not include a remote controller. It simply follows the AirLeash device and it can be controlled by it as well. For example, you can adjust all the flight parameters such as height, distance, angle etc. right from that standalone device. Portability is another plus that can be had from this machine. It has arms that can be folded and it has body made of extremely light weight material. You can configure a lap or track recording on AirDog which can subsequently be uploaded via a mobile handheld device application. AirDog offers a flight duration of around 10 to 18 minutes and is powered by a 14.8V 5600 mAh LiPo battery. All these exciting features notwithstanding, AirDog does have a weak spot. Its remote control range is relatively quite low: it is just 250 meters.
Conclusion on Drones that Follow You
The task of capturing aerial photographs and videos which was once thought to be only possible with the help of helicopters is now being managed by the Follow Me drones equipped with cinema-grade cameras. Do let us know which one is your favorite drone out our list of the drones that follow you. We’ll be awaiting your valued comments!
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