Snap Launched A Portable Flying Camera That Independently Follows Its User
Snap, best recognized for its flagship app Snapchat, is launching a flying camera, the company announced Thursday during its annual Snap's Partner summit. The device is described as a 'free-flying sidekick that's a fit for adventures big and small.'
Named Pixy, the yellow flying companion comes as a "pocket-sized" device with no controller or set-up needed. By simply tapping a button, users can send off Pixy into one of four preset flight paths. The device will float, orbit, or follow a few feet above the user to capture photos and videos, then land in the user's palm.
Pixy is billed as a companion to Snapchat. The flying camera stores up to 100 videos or 1,000 photos. Videos and pictures from flights are wirelessly transferred into the user's Snapchat Memories, according to Snap. Users can then edit the pictures using Snapchat's editing tools, Lenses, and Sounds, and share them on any other platform.
The gadget is available as of Thursday in the U.S. and France for $229.99 while supplies last. The base flight pack includes the Pixy camera, bumper and carrying strap, a charging cable, and a rechargeable battery. Additional batteries can be bought for $19.99 and a dual battery charger is available for $49.99, the company said. The camera can sail up to five to eight flights using its default flight modes on each battery recharge.
Snap has released several other gadgets in the years prior including its Spectacles 3 camera glasses and its next-generation augmented reality Spectacles glasses, capable of superimposing computer-generated images over the user's field of vision. The company has since expressed its long-term commitment to producing hardware, which could open up a new revenue stream aside from its advertising business. Nonetheless, the company said in its last earnings report that revenue from hardware today is "not material."
The social media company also announced several augmented-reality features and developer updates. Today, Snapchat now reaches 600 million monthly active users and more than 330 million daily active users, according to their reports.