PowerEgg – Perfect Alliance between Form and Function
Fly to the Future
This is true of a lot of new drones, and very true of the PowerEgg. It is a drone. It flies. It has a 4K camera. It is controllable. It does not look like any other drone in the market.
What does a drone look like? Does it have to be a certain form factor? Does it have to have a fixed size and specifications? Those are questions which drone manufacturers are asking themselves as they come up with new designs. There is a definition for a drone. It should be able to fly. It should be controllable, and it should be programmable – or at least, certain functions should be automatic.
These questions come up whenever a new drone goes to market. People ask these questions because each time a new drone is introduced, it looks nothing like others already on the market. The feature set is different, the capabilities are different. With all these unique features and form factors, there is no single basis for comparison. At some point someone will say that it is useless to compare because they are different and appeal to different markets or demographics.
Anyone who has seen the PowerEgg would almost certainly say that they have seen this drone before. It looks very much like EVE from the Pixar animation WALL-E. It looks like an egg. It is a flying egg. Actually, when it flies, it looks less like an egg, but still retains enough egg-like physical characteristics that it does not matter. The design inspiration looks like EVE.
One good thing about the design is that it projects fun, it looks like something meant to be enjoyed, and and is easy to learn. These expectations are all true. This is so easy to use, it can even be flown indoors. The PowerEgg design makes it easy to store when not in use. When closed, it looks like an egg or some other unobtrusive furniture which you can leave lying around the house.
However, for most flyers, they may not like the relatively large shape for flying this around. It is also priced at $1,300 competing in the same price point as the Mavic Pro and GoPro Karma.
• Novel egg shape.
• Retractable landing gear.
• Easily folds away for storage.
• Powermodes: Selfie, follow me, Orbit and Waypoint
Setting up the PowerEgg is simple and easy. The legs and the props fold out from the body. There are four propellers and they snap to position. The legs fold into the body when the PowerEgg reaches a certain height from the ground.
There are two controllers which connect to the antenna/router. There is the regular controller which is not any different from other drone controllers. It has two joysticks, one for flight control and the other for power.
The other controller, called the Maestro Motion Remote Control, has a single joystick and is used in conjunction with hand gestures. When you the PowerEgg is in follow mode, you can control its movements by gestures. The gesture controller is there to make sure that you are giving commands, and not just waving your arms around.
The PowerEgg is powerful. It has a top speed of 13 m/s, with a maximum flight time of 23 minutes. It has a ceiling of more than 13,000 feet, although FAA regulations state that drones are not allowed to fly higher than 400 feet. The signal range is more than 3 miles, depending on the terrain and weather conditions.
It can navigate indoors due to sensors which gauge the height from the ground. It has sonar and ground pattern recognition software to determine its surroundings. This controls when the landing gear retracts to the body, and also helps it navigate indoors. To help it along, it has a collision avoidance system. This is very helpful when in follow mode, or in any of the other automatic flying modes.
It has the standard go home command, where it automatically returns home when it is low on battery power, or when you give the command to return to its point of origin. It has four PowerModes: Selfie, Follow Me, Orbit and Waypoint. Selfie and Follow Me are self-explanatory. In Orbit Mode, the PowerEgg flies around a circular path with you in the center. The Waypoint allows you to chart a path to follow by designating which points it should pass by.
The camera is 4K capable at 30fps, 1080p at up to 120fps, and 720p at up to 240fps. It captures still images at 13.8mp resolution. It can capture at bursts of 3/5/10 frames, and has a self-timer for 3/5/10 seconds. The camera lens has a 35mm equivalent of 22mm f/2.8 and can shoot from ISO 100 to 1,600. The shutter speed is from 8 seconds to 1/8,000 second. For videos, the ISO range is 100 to 3,200.
The 4K camera is mounted on a 3-axis gimbal. The camera is can also be manually controlled with the use of the controller. The retracting landing gear makes sure that there is no obstruction to the camera shots. The user can control where the camera is pointing. It supports a 64GB storage, and captures video to MP4/MOV format. Still pictures are stored as JPEG or RAW/DNG files.
With a friendly looking design, the PowerEgg is something to consider if you are buying a 4K video capable drone. Its automated controls and ability to be safely flown indoors makes it a great fit for videographers who need to shoot indoors.
There is not much to complain about the PowerEgg. It has a stylish design with capabilities in line with its price point. There competition is fluid, and this is marketed for prosumers or hobbyists. Although there can be a market for this for marketing companies which require good quality drone videos.
As much as there are reasons to buy the PowerEgg, there are those who will point out that it is possible to buy a cheaper drone with the same video capability. At a selling price of $1,300 it can be an expensive proposition. However, it should be noted that this is not a toy. The capabilities of this drone are beyond what you would have for a toy.