Lily follow-me camera drone flies itself

Cool camera drone has some mountain bike applications

Cameras News
The Lily is a 2.8 lb device with 20 minutes of flight time.

The Lily is a 2.8 lb device with 20 minutes of flight time (click to enlarge).

There seems to be an exploding market for drones right now. Some are toys and some are tools for photography or videography. But the most fascinating category for outdoor enthusiasts seems to be that of the ‘follow-me’ drone. These are the magical devices of formerly science-fiction lore where these drones follow you and capture your awesome activities on video. Because if you did something rad and no one saw it, did it really happen?

The formula for the follow-me drone category seems to be: Make an amazing promotional video that makes everyone look like a hero. Have everyone pay for the start-up costs. Then promise are delivery date that is very far away.

Well the Lily team seems to be following this script to perfection as they have produced an amazing promotional video. Throw it off a bridge and into the water. And have grandma throw it and catch it? As the saying goes, “Shut up and take my money.” View and see.

Here is the fascinating introduction and funding video for the Lily. This video has been so successful in raising funds and awareness that they didn’t even need Kickstarter to generate a flood of pre-orders.

The big issue is here is whether they can deliver or not. This is a category where many have promised and none have delivered. They're all promising the sun and the moon and none have delivered product that Aunt Betsy can unbox and have it film her afternoon gardening session. It is simply a monumental array of variables and risks and it is very difficult to deliver what they are promising while ensuring the safety of the users.

The Lily camera drone is applicable in a lot of sports and activities.

The Lily camera drone is applicable in a lot of sports and activities (click to enlarge).

What does this have to do with mountain biking? Well our sport is one that frequently adorns these videos where are activities are captured on video. Can Lily do it? It certainly has all the right moves so given a wide open space, it should work. One key feature missing in the first revision is a collision avoidance system. So a tree or pole can be a problem if it’s in the flight path. But we’re sure that can be added in later versions.

One thing for sure, it will be interesting to see this space develop and see what these bright minds can deliver.

Specifications
  • Body: Black polycarbonate and brushed aluminum
  • Tracking device body: Polycarbonate
  • Dimensions: 10.29” x 10.29” x 3.22”
  • Weight: 2.8 lbs
  • Tracking device dimensions: 2.37” x 0.75”
  • Tracking device weight: 75g
  • Lily’s sensors: Accelerometer, three-axis Gyro, magnetometer, barometer, GPS.
  • Tracking device sensors: Accelerometer, barometer, GPS.
  • Video: 1080p60 or 720p120 slo-mo
  • Still photos: 12mp
  • Tracking cameras: one front and one bottom
  • Storage: Micro SD: 4gb card included
  • File format: mp4

The Lily staff showed off their product to Resource Magazine for a demonstration (click to enlarge).

Lily is now available online. The pre-order price is $599 USD until July 15th, then the price will settle to its MSRP of $999. The first production units will begin shipping in May 2016. Whether it can deliver in volume and meet performance and safety expectations is a big wildcard for now. So be prepared for a long wait.

The camera drone follows the person who wears this wrist device.

The camera drone follows the person who wears this wrist device (click to enlarge).

For more information visit www.lily.camera.

Photo Thumbnails (click to enlarge)

About the author: Francis Cebedo

The founder of mtbr and roadbikereview, Francis Cebedo believes that every cyclist has a lot to teach and a lot to learn. "Our websites are communal hubs for sharing cycling experiences, trading adventure stories, and passing along product information and opinions." Francis' favorite bike is the last bike he rode, whether it's a dirt jumper, singlespeed, trail bike, lugged commuter or ultralight carbon road steed. Indeed, Francis loves cycling in all its forms and is happiest when infecting others with that same passion. Francis also believes that IPA will save America.


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