A Smartphone-Powered Drone Is In The Works

Ok, when we say smartphone-powered, we actually mean it. One Chinese smartphone manufacturer named Mito plans to build a drone that will be powered by a smartphone; and not by the way of remote control or some impossible wireless energy transfer. No, this drone only functions if you put the actual smartphone in it.

You place the phone in the slot placed in the middle of the drone, and then it provides computational power needed for control, as well as taking pictures. Oh, and phone’s wireless connection enables you to remote control the drone. This concept raises lots of questions, that’s sure. For instance, will the phone be safe from harm if you crash the drone? That’s something relatively common, but when you crash a regular drone, there’s usually no serious damage. Either drone’s propeller protection falls off, or the fall leaves a visible mark on the surface, but no damage to the components.

Mito Drone 1

Or let’s say your phone just falls out while performing a sharp turn. The chassis holding the phone must be really, really tough or something like this could relatively easy be enough reason to skip the purchase of this drone. And there is the question of controls. Will the drone be controlled by a remote or Mito though of something else? Because, of you want to make a cheap drone (which Mito plans), you make an app that enables your phone to be used as a controller. So, they’ll probably ship the UAV with a stand-alone controller, because the smartphone will, you know, be used as brains of the operation.

Mito isn’t really a famous brand in the smartphone world, so we must wonder will they make their new drone compatible with different smartphone models, or will they use just their models? If they choose the latter, success is not guaranteed. It’s different when Samsung announces Gear VR and states that only a couple of the newest Galaxy and Note models will be compatible with it; after all, Samsung is the biggest phone manufacturer in the world at this moment. But for a relatively unknown manufacturer to offer a UAV that’s only compatible with their smartphone models is a recipe for disaster.

Mito Drone 2

Yes, Mito probably made this kind of design in order to ensure a low price, but nevertheless, they must make most flagship models from other manufacturers compatible with their drone, or they will just throw lots of research and development money down the drain.

Ok, numerous questions aside, the potential Mito drone looks nice; it has a rectangular design, four propellers, and a slot for a smartphone. It looks nice, looks like something that is actually doable. But, they aren’t the first ones to come up with this kind of idea. PhoneDrone was an almost identical project that failed on Kickstarter, even though their idea got the staff-pick stamp on it, and the makers of it asked for a relatively low sum of $250,000. Even if Mito actually releases this drone, it will probably soon enter the overhyped gadgets graveyard.

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