Airdog, the tracking sports drone, has launched its second kickstarter campaign, thereby presenting their second version of the Airdog sports drone, the ADII.
Airdog shook the action videography world in 2013 when they launched an immensely successful Kickstarter campaign, offering to build the world's first auto-follow video drone. The campaign brought in more than $1.3 million in backing of the $200,000 goal. Now they're back with the second version, hoping to raise $250,000 in funding.
After a successful first run, AirDog has announced their second Kickstarter campaign for the second version of Airdog - the ADII. The ADII builds on the original Airdog and offers a few key, new features. Some of the new features include;
- setting a 3D flight path - allowing the user to define and avoid obstacles in the terrain,
- “scenic view” video capture modes to take in the beautiful surroundings (not only the action),
- improved battery life and management - the ability to quickly swap out a battery for a fresh one
- Backlit “leash” screen to view AirDog updates regardless of a glaring sun
How much does it costs?
The ADII will retail for $1,500, however the ADII can be ordered through the Kickstarter page for a significantly reduced price. This is assuming, however, that the project will be fully backed. The Kickstarter campaign is an “all or nothing” funding deal, meaning that if the project doesn't meet 100% of its $250,000 funding goal, it won't receive any amount of the pledged funding.
The ADII is more expensive than two of its main competitors - the DJI Phantom selling at $1,349 and Yuneec at $1,299- both China-based brands and manufacturers. The main differentiator being that the AirDog offers the AirLeash, allowing for a fully hands-free experience that is critical to extreme athletes.
Though The Verge claims that the DJI Phantom is far ahead of the consumer drone industry, in a side-by-side video comparison we see that the Phantom has trouble with autonomous tracking, while AirDog excelled. The video quality for the Phantom, however, was superior.
Will it be successful?
It can be said that AirDog had their successful campaign at the peak of the crowdfunding bubble - many backers used crowdfunding platforms to get their hands on innovative new products before they go on the market. Many had their hopes crushed as many projects never came to see the light of day, reminding the backers of the risky nature of investing and funding a not-yet-existing product. As a result, activity and trust in crowdfunding platforms has dwindled, while media platforms no longer find it news-worthy to publish stories about new campaigns, simply because they're being crowdfunded
The change in opinion of crowdfunding platforms may prove to be a challenge to the AirDog team. They will have to convince their followers and potential backers that their product will indeed go into production and be shipped on time. AirDog themselves struggled with timely shipping, as they were only able to deliver their AirDogs to their backers in February of 2017. This time around, the AirDog team promises to ship by August, and claims in their campaign video that 250 ADII units are already in production.
AirDog seems to be on track with funding, having already reached the $100k mark only 5 days after launching the campaign.
To support AirDog's campaign or pre-order an ADII, visit their Kickstarter campaign page.