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DJI rolls out mini-drone Spark for beginners

DJI revealed its latest mini-drone Spark on Tuesday, aiming to expand its consumer base beyond drone enthusiasts with a lightweight, easy-to-use model.

“It‘s easy to use, so we are targeting people who are using drones for the first time,” Moon Tae-hyun, DJI Korea’s country manager, told reporters at a press conference at the DJI Arena in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province.
DJI Korea Country Manager Moon Tae-hyun holds the Spark at the DJI Arena in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province Tuesday. (DJI)
DJI Korea Country Manager Moon Tae-hyun holds the Spark at the DJI Arena in Yongin, Gyeonggi Province Tuesday. (DJI)

Weighing in at just 300 grams, the Spark is DJI‘s first drone to have a PalmControl function, which means that the drone can be controlled by hand gestures without the need for a remote controller.

A sensor on the nose of the drone scans the user’s hand, then follows hand gestures for takeoff, landing and basic movements.

According to Moon, DJI utilized deep learning technology to teach the drone to recognize hands of different shapes and sizes, so that anyone can use the gesture control. 
DJI‘s mini-drone Spark (DJI)
DJI‘s mini-drone Spark (DJI)

The Spark is equipped with QuickShot, a function that allows users to create short videos with pre-programmed drone movements including Rocket, which moves the drone vertically, Dronie, which moves the drone away from the user at a diagonal, Circle, which circles the drone, and Helix, which moves the drone in a screw motion. With Quickshot, users who are unfamiliar with drone videos can easily create, edit and share automatically created video clips.

When the Spark is connected to a controller, users can also go into Sports Mode, which allows the drone to move up to 50 kilometers per hour. The Spark is fitted with a 1/2.3-inch CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) sensor that shoots 12-megapixel photos and 1080p videos. The battery allows the Spark to be in flight for up to 16 minutes per charge.

The Spark is available in five colors: Alpine White, Meadow Green, Sunrise Yellow, Lava Red and Sky Blue.

DJI is currently accepting pre-orders for the Spark, with deliveries expected to begin in mid- to late June. The Spark itself retails at 620,000 won, with a Spark Fly More combo adding a controller, extra propeller, propeller guard, extra battery, charging hub and shoulder bag priced at 870,000 won. 

By Won Ho-jung (hjwon@heraldcorp.com)
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