4 Tips for Flying Your Drone With a Smartphone

Image via Flickr by Andrew Turner

Personal aerial drones are becoming more popular every year, and they’re getting smarter, too. These advancements are making quadcopters a fun — and potentially profitable — way to enjoy time outdoors. Many of today’s camera drones rely on an old-school remote control interface. However, some of the most advanced drones now operate strictly through a smartphone app. 

New technology is infiltrating the drone craze and offers innovative ways to explore aerial photography and recreational droning. Take a closer look at the following four tips for flying your drone with a smartphone.

Choose the Right Phone and Network

Whether you’re new to aerial photography or you’re a professional cinematographer, invest some time in selecting the right phone and network that works best with your drone’s equipment. Thanks to an escalating community of drone enthusiasts, today’s connectivity is continually evolving, and it’s easier than ever before to control your drone from the palm of your hand.

While radio control or RC frequencies have longer ranges than your device, Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are becoming the two most frequently used types of connections with smartphone advanced flight–controller applications. The Samsung Galaxy 8 paired with T-Mobile’s industry top speeds are always available on the wireless carrier’s 4G LTE network and is on the short list of highly compatible devices for matching with your drone.

Pair Your Phone With Your Drone

Image via Flickr by TheBetterDay

Turn the sky into your canvas when you integrate your smart device with your drone. To take advantage of the benefits of using a flight control app, you first need to pair your flying camera with your smartphone or tablet. Your chosen application will have detailed instructions about the best way to go about pairing your aircraft’s technology, and you can always refer to your device’s user manual for help. If you’re using an iPhone, the place to start is in your settings, under available Wi-Fi networks.

Use the Beginner Mode Until You Earn Your Wings

Many modern drones have a beginner mode that is easily selectable under the controls. Learning to use your smart device, app, and your drone’s connectivity will help you earn your wings. You’ll feel confident wherever your imagination soars. Use your smartphone to preset certain flight limitations, such as your drone’s speed and maximum distance by radius and altitude. You can also set and control your flying camera’s sensitivity.

The DJI Mavic Pro is a small yet powerful drone that makes an excellent choice for beginner pilots. It offers simple controls, such as virtual joysticks on your smartphone that you can operate with only the swipe of a fingertip. Familiarizing yourself with the controls before you head outside will ensure your quadcopter functions with simple commands from your phone.

Discover the Benefits of Smartphone Apps

Leading brands of personal drones, such as DJI, offer controllers that easily integrate with free, downloadable iOS and Android smartphone apps. Put complete control of your drone in your hands with a more intuitive user interface and a video editor that allows you to build a complete experience with music and text. Once you’ve compiled your masterpiece, take advantage of the app’s YouTube live streaming. Pairing your smart device with your drone is an excellent idea when you’re serious about the quality of your in-flight photos and videos.

Take advantage of a first-person flight simulation mode that feels like you’re in the cockpit. Advanced GPS controls allow you to plot a flight pattern with multiple coordinates. Set your drone on autopilot to buzz each location as you film the entire way. Apps give you the freedom to operate your drone’s camera without the need for remote control. A compatible GPS feature contributes real-time data and precise control over where your drone flies at all times. Run diagnostics on your quadcopter from your device, such as a visual display of the drone’s remaining battery charge.

Are there any drawbacks to using an app over a remote control? Just one. Smartphones simply don’t have the range that an RC transmitter does. You decide: Would you prefer range or an app that unlocks a plethora of awesome quadcopter features?