Saturday 2 May 2015

Closer to this

So the projects that are cropping up in 2015 appear to be heading in this direction. We see the recent 3DR Solo & Phantom 3 release they look like:

But what is even more interesting in project development is more simple:

Why not use a SIM network?
Here we see the cheap 'wikipad' tablet and controller. Perfect for our needs:

Slot in the tablet, and connect to 3DR Services (we will create a joystick control addon app just like in Mission Planner). We will connect using Phone network + UDP. The communication with the drone happens over UDP, which is short for User Datagram Protocol. AT commands are text strings sent to the drone to control its actions through UDP. Just look to the AR Drone for an example.

We will setup the raspberrypi to work with 3G dongle. And also configure NAVIO+ board (or possibly the pixhawk 2 once released).

Now, you can fly as far as the battery will travel. Now you can receive video + telemetry data + send control commands from your new cheap controller.

2 developments need to happen:
1) The 3DR Services app to control flight with the wikipad.
2) The 3DR Solo app must be released or Droidplanner will include gstreamer for video.

So, it is all down to the 3DR community to deliver software? I think that the Raspberrypi + Navio is already developed.

How does this compare to today's drone prices? How will DIY drone builders adjust their setup?

I already have: 
LTE tablet
LTE Dongle

Raspberrypi (£25)
Navio+ board or Pixhawk (??? or $150??)

Bundle all together into f330 package:

I think not a crazy expensive idea.


Because I think the direction of this will lead to the elimination of the need for camera gimbals to make steady video. I think it will be done in software just like the AR Drone. Also, 5.8ghz gear will not be required - video monitors, transmitters, receivers, also telemetry modules will be redundant.

This will also make drones lighter and smaller, and able to fly a little bit longer (unless the power consumption of the navio & Rpi affect this).

Not time to yet to sell your Turnigy 9x, FPV equipment, and gimbals. But It is something to think about in a year or two; if you are not a hobbyist, just a consumer level drone flier.

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