CES Asia 2017 opened its doors yesterday, with thousands of global and China-focused brands present to showcase their latest products. Shenzhen-based drone company DJI is also here, and the major crowd puller was its latest product: the tiny but mighty DJI Spark drone.
Announced just a couple of weeks ago, the DJI Spark is the company’s smallest drone yet. That said, the leading drone maker packed an astonishing amount of features into a body that’s actually smaller in footprint than an iPhone 7 Plus.
There’s a 12MP sensor with an additional depth sensor packed into a stabilising mechanical gimbal, and an effective flight range of up to 2km when used with the analog controller. The DJI Spark also recognises gestures, allowing users to move the Spark via hand gestures (though this only works when the drone is within 3m of the user).
Besides that, most of the intelligent shooting/flight modes found on the company’s larger drones are present on the DJI Spark. Flight time is limited to only 16 minutes, but DJI designed the Spark’s batteries to be hot swappable.
For something this tiny, the DJI Spark has a solid feel similar to the company’s other recent drone, the Mavic Pro. The plastic material is sturdy, and the entire thing comes in a hard carrying case for safe transportation.
Despite the small size, what really surprised me was at the demo area, where the DJI Spark zipped about without a fuss, and stayed stationary in mid-air when instructed. Of course, this demo area was inside the exhibition hall with little to no air movement, so it remains to be seen if this is the case in real life.
Nevertheless, the DJI Spark is a really fascinating piece of engineering, and one that will appeal to enthusiasts looking for their first drone. The Spark will be available for purchase in Malaysia in the coming weeks, with retail prices starting from RM2,380. A Fly More combo with additional kit will retail for RM3,300.