Sure, some things really were better back in your day, but in the case of the paper airplane, your eye-rolling kid definitely has you beat. Having already transformed that lifelessly fluttering bit of notebook into a remote control drone, PowerUp has doubled down to give your kid a first-person view from the cockpit as their substitute teacher retreats in horror.
The PowerUp FPV is a collaboration with Parrot, leaders in smartphone-connected devices and consumer drones, to deliver “the first ever paper airplane drone with a live streaming camera.” Setup is as simple as folding your plane and snapping on the lightweight, microchip-powered carbon fiber propeller, rudder, and camera and setting it free. Make their first trick the “selfie takeoff” so your grumpy old ass can still complain about the kids these days while acknowledging there’s a new paper king of the skies.
The PowerUp FPV can broadcast a live feed of everything it sees via wifi with a more than 300-foot range. The front-mounted, wide-angle camera can also record video, audio, or still photos at speeds up to 20 miles per hour. The drone is controlled either manually on a smartphone screen, or via head-mounted display with the included Google cardboard viewer. Full or assisted autopilot can also be initiated, so your kid can buzz the monkey bars and watch chaos ensue on the playground literally without lifting a finger.
The Parrot PowerUp FPV plane crushed its Kickstarter goal because obviously it did, but you can still order either of the originals and pre-order the FPV. The estimated shipping date is August — just enough summer left to practice before the classrooms reopen.
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