Sure, you can play games and do all kinds of cool stuff on your iPad or your iPhone, but can you control things that aren’t even attached to your device with it? Pretty soon you’ll be able to with a cool new game or gadget (you really can take your pick with what category this falls into), with the AR Drone.
The AR Drone is a helicopter that flies completely independently from the iPhone or the iPad but it operates using an iPad, an iPod Touch, or an iPhone as its remote. The AR Drone is a small disc-shaped helicopter that has cameras at both the front and the rear of it. These cameras send video to the iPod device through a wireless connection, and it’s this that allows the device to control the helicopter. Meanwhile, the user can completely control the helicopter by tilting, turning, and swerving the iPod or by using the touch controls on the iPad’s, iPhone’s, or iPod Touch’s screen. The helicopter also has four fans attached at different points to it, and it is these fans that allow the helicopter to fly around in all directions.
The AR Drone was first unveiled at the 2010 Consumer Electronics Show in January in Las Vegas. It’s set to go on sale in September and will cost $299 to the lucky buyers who want to truly use their iPad, their iPhone, or their iPod Touch in a completely new and different way.
Currently, there are only plans for the AR Drone, or anything else like it, to hit the market. But a France-based developer, Parrot, also has a similar game in the works that it says will be able to run across multiple platforms. So who knows? Maybe soon we’ll all be ducking these airborne devices as we walk down the street, and see people snickering along the sidewalk holding their smartphones and other devices.