If you’re a fan of augmented reality AND remote control helicopters plus other such gizmos, you’ll surely love the Parrot AR.Drone. This is basically a helicopter packing a bunch of cameras, WiFi connectivity and a cool system that allows the user to control it via iPhone or iPod Touch, also including a taste of augmented reality:
The Parrot helicopter generates its own WiFi network around it, allowing the iPhone or the iPod Touch that controls it to connect to it. Thanks to the accelerometer on these devices, AR.Drone will be very easy to fly, by tilting the phone/iPod in the desired direction or using the on-screen control system.
The AR.Drone is a quadricopter made out of carbon fibre and durable plastic (PA66) and the gadget comes with MEMS (Micro-Electro-Mechanical System), video processing, video streaming and a modern interface displayed on the iPhone. A neat image processing software is also involved in the use of this contraption, in order for the augmented reality system to work.
Parrot’s toy uses a 1100 mAh battery to fly, providing it 15 minutes of functioning per charge. The helicopter can reach a max speed of 18 km/h, it weighs around 400 grams and it comes with tons of cool iPhone games, based on augmented reality. The image captured by the camera on the helicopter will be transformed, so you’ll see virtual robots on screen, rockets or other Parrot helicopters as your enemies.