Experts predict overall holiday retail sales in 2014 to exceed $615 billion– much of which will comprise children’s gifts. And, considering recent reports on the growth of the commercial drone market, it seems retailers can expect to see consumer UAV sales soar into the stratosphere.
With an increasing number of kid-friendly UAVs on the market, you may ask “How can I find the perfect drone for the hard-to-please youngster on my list?”
Have no fear, anxious shopper.
With DRONELIFE’S easy-to-navigate Drone Buying Guide, we can help you win “Gift Giver of the Century” status in the eyes of even the toughest young critic.
If you’re buying a drone gift on a budget, you can’t go wrong with the CX-30 by Cheerson. The quadcopter is extremely agile, offers a flight time of 5-8 minutes and boasts a 0.3 MP, 640 x 480 camera (still/video). An extra fun feature for kids is the CX-30’s throw-to-fly launch function.
The Walkera QR Ladybird V2 FPV version may not have the muscle of a larger quadcopter but what it lacks in power, it makes up for in style. The name says it all; this drone actually looks like a Ladybird (or Lady Bug, to Americans).
The Ladybird is an entry-level, mini-quadcopter and includes a 200 MP video camera that will stream live video directly to the easy-to-use controller (but does not record video). The USB charging setup is easy for a child to hook up and the limited 200-feet range ensures the Ladybird won’t be crashing into the neighbor’s house.
Perfect for those who have shown an early interest in photography, the X4 FPV by Hubsan features an acrobatic flight profile but is also easy for a novice to operate. The X4 comes equipped with an on board video camera that can live stream video right to the controller. Unlike the Ladybird, the X4 can record video footage on a micro-SD card (sold separately).
A favorite here at DRONELIFE, Parrot’s AR 2.0 is controlled by any iOS or Android smartphone or tablet. For beginners who want to practice before outdoor launch, the Parrot AR 2.0 comes with an easily installed propeller guard which adds an extra safety measure for indoor flight (always a great idea for kids!). Another kid-friendly feature is the AR’s Naza-M V2 GPS multi-rotor autopilot system which can automatically return the drone to its starting position if it loses communication with the controller. Like the QX, the AR 2.0 comes equipped with a 720p camera. Captured video is automatically saved to the user’s smart device and can be easily uploaded to social media in a matter of seconds.
For a slightly older crowd whose passion for photography is more advanced, the DJI Phantom FC40 fits the bill. Users can live stream 720p video from the drone to a smartphone via WiFi. Like the AR 2.0, the Phantom offers a GPS-based autopilot system that returns the UAV to its takeoff location if it loses communication with the receiver. The system will also automatically land the Phantom if the battery charge drops too low. Considered a UAV for the more responsible flyer, the Phantom has some muscle under the hood capable of speeds up to 10 m/s (horizontal) and 6 m/s (vertical).
Note: ALL drone use by children should be carefully supervised by an adult.
Jason is a longstanding contributor to DroneLife with an avid interest in all things tech. He focuses on anti-drone technologies and the public safety sector; police, fire, and search and rescue.
Beginning his career as a journalist in 1996, Jason has since written and edited thousands of engaging news articles, blog posts, press releases and online content.
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