With drones (or, more accurately, quadcopters) more commonplace than ever, companies are resorting to increasingly extreme and obscure measures to make their models stand out from the crowd. Umbrellas, hockey pucks, cocktails, Teslas: if you can think up a task, chances are good there exists a drone that will complete it.
Which is why it almost feels antiquated to say that UAV (for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) manufacturer Yuneec is focusing on function rather than flash with their latest release.
The Mantis Q is Yuneec’s newest consumer drone and easily their most user-friendly. One of the first — if not the first — drones to feature voice control, the Mantis Q will cost you just $500 for 4k video, facial recognition and motion controls, flying speeds up to 44 mph, and a whopping 33 minutes of flight time per charge.
Mantis Q (2 images)
And when we say voice controls, we don't just mean “take off” and “land.” The Mantis Q responds to “record a video,” “take a selfie” and even “wake up.” And if that doesn’t work, the device’s facial-recognition abilities will allow for a smile to trigger a photo from up to 13 feet away, or a wave of the hand if you're going for a more candid pose.
While it’s easy to imagine mishaps caused by multiple dads simultaneously yelling at the sky above the Grand Canyon, the technology represents a bold — and useful — new direction for UAVs. And whether the voice control is foolproof or not, the Mantis Q is a great option for users looking for an upgraded range and battery life: Yuneec’s $400 Breeze 4k, for comparison, only offers 12 minutes of flight time.
To top it all off, the Mantis Q only weighs a pound and collapses down to easily fit in small bags or backpacks.
Photos via Yuneec