Skydio R1 - Smart Drone With Autonomous Features

There are a number of drones available in the market that have autonomous capabilities. Skydio's R1 drone has self-flying capabilities. The drone can lock-on to an object or a person, follow him, shoot videos while avoiding the obstacles. It can fly through a dense forest or a busy subway or a warehouse without hitting an object.

How Does The Skydio R1 Work?

The 13 onboard cameras work as guides for the drone to fly. You just need to open the app on your smart device and you will see the live stream from the drone's camera. You can tap on any person you see on your screen and the drone will identify the characteristics like color, size, shape, etc.

You can lock the drone onto yourself while you are riding a bike or jumping off a cliff or skydiving. It can fly as fast as 25 miles per hour and its power lasts up to 16 minutes.

Skydio is using the autonomous technology used by autonomous vehicles. R1 behaves as an artificially intelligent drone by using the power of a TX1 processor.

The drone does not use the GPS sensors for navigation. It uses its own cameras to generate navigational information in real-time.


There are different follow modes that capture the target from the sides or orbit around him or lead him. You don't need the phone in your hand after putting the drone in any of these modes.

It also has a stadium mode for capturing the field sports. You can fly the drone manually as well.

Drawbacks of R1

The Drone's fastest speed is not as fast as you would like it to be. Its battery does not last too long either. You can complete just one trip or two trips within 16 minutes. It has an onboard memory of 64GB which is not expandable.

Another problem with the drone is that it cannot fly over water bodies. It cannot produce the navigational information looking at the constantly changing features of the waves and water surface.


R1 is not designed for a large consumer market, but you can do some impressive things with it. The Drone can do an excellent job of recording or streaming the sports events. It can also work as a useful tool for the security forces to track the lawbreakers.

R1 still needs a lot of improvements such as a longer lasting battery, faster speed, and better tracking. However, Skydio has done an impressive job by creating R1 which is a self-flying drone in the true sense.



View all >
DesignCon 2019
Integrated Systems Europe 2019