Drones are the technology that has seen a rapid rise in popularity over the past five years. We are now at a point where a drone can be purchased for under $200, with many features that were once only available at a higher price range.
The value of drones has moved beyond that of purely entertainment, with the educational usage increasing ten-fold. Child users can now code drones using simple language to do simple things, however through powerful coding language, drones cane be used to learn how to explore the world. Built in cameras for aerial photography and video, they are other valuable tools to enhance learning and allow people to experience worlds beyond their own, from angles not previously being able to be explored. It is this education aspect that has both parents and schools alike keen to invest.
The world of drone purchasing can be confusing for parents to navigate, however, there are a number of different price point options that are worth exploring.
The Tello drone, developed by DJI and Ryze in March 2018, can be purchased for $200 and offer children hours of fun and learning discovery, from developing code to allow analysis of the world, free flight, learning the rules of drone flight, and how to operate the coding environment.
At the same price point, the Parrot Mambo Fly can be programmed with Tynker, a mobile program that allows simple manipulation and use of the drone. However, being an older model, there are some features included in the Tello that are not included in this model. This includes a FPV (First Person View) camera, which needs to be purchased as an add on module that attaches to the top of the drone, as well as the addition of a pea shooter or a grabber attachment used for more complex tasks.
For those parents wanting to spend a bit more money, purchasing the Parrot Bebop 2 for approximately $500 dollars still represents good value for money. It comes with a built-in FPV camera and a largely increased battery life which is a great upgrade for any kids wanting to break into the world of drones and try their hand at this new technology.
At the end of the day, whichever drone you choose will add a new element of fun to your child’s life and will equip them with essential ICT skills to broaden their skills and knowledge.
By Angus Bell
Year 8 – Bribie Island SHS