Tag Archive | Flexbot

Drone Startups – Top 10 drone startups @dronologista

Dear friends,

Although only five months young, dronologista blog has grown and needs a new attire.

As of 1st of September, dronologista.com moves to a new hosting, new address and slightly changes the appearance . Content will remain the same, and dronologista will continue to provide information about non-military drones only.

Enjoy!

Two months ago when I started posting Drone Startups articles here, I didn’t expect that I will have enough material to run with it as long as I would like to. And I would like to post on this topic for years, if possible, a very moderate goal.

Yet, two months fast forward, and there are ten articles covering a very vibrant community of entrepreneurs that are not only bringing change to the UAV environment, but are about to change the world. Some of them are genuine and ingenious, others are slightly bizarre and there is even one fake startup.

Here is the list of 10 startups that have been featured at dronologista:

1. Matternet

When you realize that more than 1 billion of Earth population, 1.000.000.000 human beings have no access to all season roads, it is sort of shocker. That is a problem Matternet wants to tackle, with the envisioned network of autonomous ground stations and UAV that can reach anyone, anywhere, anytime.

2. Honeycomb

Precision agriculture is one of the biggest markets for sensor equipped Unmanned Aerial Vehicles. Honeycomb is a Oregon based startup that wants to tap into that market with their AgDrone fixed wing UAV equipped with visible and multispectral cameras for high-resolution imaging and NDVI-based crop stress detection.

3. Skycatch

Skycatch is San Francisco based, Google backed startup developing a platform for capturing data at scale using small autonomous aerial robots. Their platform consists of  UAV, ground stations and logistics dashboard enabling autonomous and remote drone operation.

4. Garuda Robotics

Garuda Robotics is the first startup featured here that is not US-based. They are from Singapore, and they offer drones and drone fleet management system called Garuda Cloud that comes with the dashboard, multimode flight plan generator, cloud storage and flight simulator.

5. Gofor

This is a complete fake startup. It created a lot of internet buzz, and even people from Google and Texas Instruments called Alex Cornell, the original prankster, asking if he was hiring. Well, he is not because Gofor was a sort of April Fools-day joke. But it just might happen that today’s prank becomes inspiration for a future startup.

6. DroneDeploy

DroneDeploy is a web-based control and management system that offers drone operators things like browser-based operations control, fleet management and tracking, electronic filling and related paperwork and data logging. Managing of multiple-drone operation is a complex task and DroneDeploy is among first to tackle this problem.

7. FlexBot

Flexbot is  tiny, crowdfounded, open-source nanocopter, which can be controlled by a smartphone. With the price of only $49 for the basic product and whooping $159 for more expensive version that comes with 720p real-time video sending webcam, it is inexpensive and fun to fly.

8. EasyDrone

One of the personal favorites, Easy Drone is a plug-and-play aerial filming platform, incredibly compact and easy to assemble. It proved to be a smashing hit on Kickstarter as it reached it $20.000 funding goal within two weeks, and is now nearing its stretch goal of $30.000 that will include some very advanced features.

9. Skyteboard

This startup made me ask myself “why?”, for the first time since I am covering this topic. It goes in the bizarre category, since I am not sure why would anyone finance and buy “social network controlled quadcopter”. It seems that I am not alone, since crowdfunding is not going quite well for Skyteboard. Kudos to the engineering displayed, it is the only bright element of this project.

10. Skysense

One more entrant in the remote drone operation arena is Berlin based Skysense. Their inductive charging landing pad and drone hangars might be tapping into the same market in which Skycatch already is. If inductive landing pad and drone hangar is the way to go, the future will tell.

 

This list will continue to grow, since the drone market seems to be quite interesting for entrepreneurs, and dronologista will follow the topic with great interest and share the news with great devotion.

Do you know of a startup (not mentioned here, preferably) that is using, making or supporting drones?

 

Drone Startups 7: Flexbot

Dear friends,

Although only five months young, dronologista blog has grown and needs a new attire.

As of 1st of September, dronologista.com moves to a new hosting, new address and slightly changes the appearance . Content will remain the same, and dronologista will continue to provide information about non-military drones only.

Enjoy!

Flexbot is the smallest UAV featured here so far. It is a tiny, crowdfounded, open-source nanocopter, which can be controlled by a smartphone. A successful Kickstarter project has more than $500K pledged, and a small army of followers and users worldwide.

FlexbotBut it was not always peachy keen for Flexbot. When it was founded it was called Hex, and the whole fundraising campaign was run under that name with large Hex logo included. However, at the end of 2013. backers were informed that due to copyright conflict, the name of the quadrotor has to be changed. It had a snowball effect on production, and the pre-Christmas launch was delayed until February this year. But that story is a history now, and Flexbot is shipping their product on a massive scale.

With the price of only $49 for the basic product, Flexbot is inexpensive and fun to fly. It is world’s first consumer electronic product that uses 3D printing technology to achieve personalization. Users can select one of several shell designs for their copter, or they can send their design and Flexbot will print it out for them.

Flexbot at the beechTiny drone comes with a cool app for a smartphone that is open-source and hackable. One of their more expensive  products, costing whooping $159, comes with a small 720p webcam that sends real-time video to users mobile device.

Flexbot App Screenshot

Assembly of the drone takes less than five minutes, and requires no soldering, which is kind of cool if you don’t have a soldering gun at your disposal. How easy it is to assemble this nifty little drone, you can see in this video:

Flexbot is a perfect device for everyone interested in flying drones, but not interested in tinkering with the frame, motors and other pieces of hardware. But if you do want to do that, you can create your customized, personalized, pimped out copter, you can hack the app and get the drone you always wanted.

Pictures and video courtesy of Flexbot.