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Skydio drops the price of its R1 follow-me drone to $1,999

The company also introduced some new features and shot modes.
Swapna Krishna, @skrishna
September 6, 2018
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Today, Skydio, the company behind the camera drone R1, announced new features for its autonomous photography and video device. These include new Skills which are focused on obtaining quick, easy video clips that are optimized for sharing on social media. They can also be used as a shortcut to obtaining different angles for longer videos. These One-Shot Skills include Dronie, Boomerang, Vortex and Rocket, and Skydio has added a Stabilize option to help streamline editing shaky video.

Skydio has sold out of the Frontier Edition R1s, which were intended to be a limited edition. The company is now mass producing R1s that can ship today for a price of $1,999, which is a $500 price cut. The new drone doesn't look much different from its predecessor; it has a black ring around the lens instead of a blue one. Pricing was one of our main complaints with the Skydio R1, so that drop certainly is welcome.

The company also introduced new features for the Autonomy Engine. This is the platform that includes machine-learning algorithms and computer vision to help the R1 obtain the best autonomous camera images and video possible. Now, the company is opening it up with the Skydio Autonomy Platform, which allows third-party developers to build skills using the same engines the drone's developers use. This could make the drone much more widely useful.

If you're interested in trying out a Skydio R1, and you happen to live in the Bay Area or Portland, you can now rent the drone from the company Omni. The rest of us will have to shell out to purchase it, but it's certainly less of a sting now that the price has been lowered.

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