Parrot's folding 4K drone is ready to take on DJI's Mavic Air

The Anafi promises high-quality drone video for $699.

Parrot may have scaled back its drone division and shifted some of its focus toward workers, but that doesn't mean it's downplaying the consumer side of things. If anything, it's ramping things up. The company has unveiled the Anafi, a folding drone that takes some not-so-subtle potshots at DJI's Mavic Air. It's not just the portability -- the Anafi touts a 21-megapixel camera that promises 4K HDR video at 100Mbps, including 2.8X lossless zoom. The camera isn't good as the Mavic Air's in some respects, as it's only using two-axis mechanical stabilization (software and a wide lens handle the third axis). Still, it represents a big improvement over the 1080p video and no-gimbal design of Parrot's Bebop drones.

The flight time is a solid but unspectacular 25 minutes (extendable by charging from a USB-C battery bank) with a 2.5-mile range, although Parrot is promising "super quiet flights." We'd want to test that claim, but it's a good sign if you despise constant buzzing of some drones. And since it's 2018, you're getting a new smartphone-based drone control app (there's an included physical controller) with AI-based visual tracking, drone selfies, automatic landscape videos, slow motion and hyperlapse.

In some ways, the Anafi's real allure is the price. It'll arrive on July 1st for $699. That's not trivial for a personal drone, but it's a cool hundred less than the $799 Mavic Air. If you're willing to deal with a few compromises, it could provide better overall value.