Drone Life News – DJI Mavic 3 Release, Failed Drone Attack on power grid Reignites Debate on Safety
As always, is the editor in chief of dronelife.com. You know her. I know her as miss miriam mcnabb miriam. How are you doing? I am doing excellent as always happy to be here with you. How are you doing great doing great? I greatly appreciate all the smiles as usual, which i think will bring us into our first piece of news Music. You know miriam, i was i was gon na say i thought a lot of people would really be smiling about the mavic, 3 release and uh. It seems like well. That may not be the entire case, but nonetheless miriam this. This new drone did just come out and for those who havent uh been privy to this news just yet uh what is in this new mavic 3, so mavic 3. It had been teased for months um. As you know, new mavic, mavic products or new dgi products. Um up in our you know at drone life we kind of just do it. When its released. We say what the final um specs and features are we put it out there? You know this is the next release of the very very popular mavic. It has a longer flight endurance, 45 minutes its got dual sensors, its got 4k video. You know, dji is certainly sort of touting this as um sort of next level for content creators and and again djm does marketing, as weve mentioned before, is really shifting to this kind of prosumer content creator space in addition to the commercial and professional applications for their Drones, so you know thats from the drone life perspective, thats what it is we rely on people like you to tell us sort of how its working and what youre hearing from the flying community about the dji mavic 3 release.
What do you think well miriam you bring up some really important points. Uh drone deploy this weekend mentioned that the mavic 3 does not offer an sdk or a software developer kit. What this means is that any third party application that drone pilots are used to using will not well work on the mavic 3. That also includes things like drone deploy things like pix40 capture, things like lichi, which really hinders the value of the drone itself. As you know, we had written an article kind of comparing the mavic 3 price point to the true value, stating that if this drone could do mapping with the dual cameras, it could be fantastic for inspections, industrial work and commercial work as a whole. But because the drone does not actually have a mechanical shutter, even though the leaks showcase that it did and it does not have this sdk, it really limits the value of the aircraft as a whole. And if you tack on the fact that the drone is really being flown by the dji fly app, they have further kind of dumbed down the user experience and eliminated. Some extremely important safety features like being able to see the batterys voltage on main screen. So these things kind of combined have really uh showcased. Well, maybe not as much of an eccentric interest in the drone we had launched an instagram poll asking people well now that the mavic 3 has come out. Are you going to be buying one? And surprisingly enough? 78 of the almost thousand people that had answered the poll said no that they were not going to buy.
That drone, which i found honestly pretty interesting. Now ive got a question for you. As you know, a lot of people are assuming that as soon as a new drone comes out that it essentially replaces a bunch of other new drones, but is that really the case it really isnt and um? You know paul you – and i have have mentioned this before, but the research doesnt bear that out. In fact, the fleet is very slow to change. Really, of course, there are always new companies utilizing drone technology. There are companies, expanding their fleet and buying new tools, but a lot of the one and two men uh one and two drone shops out there doing professional drone work are very slow to change their fleet. I mean fleet information, even as recently as a couple years ago, showed the 3dr solo as sort of the number five on the list. You know um people really dont get rid of their drones until they have to or until theres, a very compelling reason to upgrade. I got ta, ask it paul. What do you think you know we just mentioned that djis marketing. I have noticed uh in the releases that i get has shifted towards this kind of content, creator audience and you wonder if maybe theyre going back to their roots and and saying hey, well, focus um in on that recreational audience again. Um, certainly with no sdk and if you cant use some of the really important tools in the drone ecosystem like a drone, deploy thats going to limit the value for professionals or or people flying for commercial applications like construction inspection and so forth, yeah, you know it Does beg the question of if their direction is kind of to uh to service the more creative recreational kind of uh gamut of the industry? Although im not really sure that that is the case, when you also consider the price point as a whole, you know rob, and i were just discussing uh the amortization schedule of this type of drone, meaning.
How long is it going to take us to essentially pay off this drone under normal working conditions and with the lack of sdk, because the mavic 3 doesnt fly uh? You know as aggressively as something like an inspire 2 youre really limited in the proximity of shots. That you can get the complexity of shots that you can get without the sdk. You know youre really limited on the uh industrial work, that you can do roof inspections and such, and so it would take a significantly more amount of time to be able to cover the cost of this drone and profit off of it. And you know, with all of that said, you know, even if youre a recreational pilot, you are typically thinking about okay. How much do i really need to use this to make it worth it and the calculation is pretty expansive frankly, and so are they trying to service the creative community um? Maybe maybe they just havent released the sdk? Yet maybe this drone uh wasnt fully ready to go, but they wanted to launch it ahead of the holiday season because all of the competitors drones you simply cant buy right. Now i mean we saw this morning that autel on the b h website, you cant buy any of their drones until next year. So i think, maybe, instead of focusing on say the recreational community, i think dji is trying to capitalize on the lack of available products on the market as a whole.
Yeah, maybe maybe i mean, certainly they are still absolutely the dominant providers uh in the marketplace. So yeah a hundred percent and for people coming in to i think um for newcomers into the drone industry. If you see kind of the latest model thats in general, your choice, you dont, tend to compare the mavic 3 with the mavic 2 right and say: oh, i think ill go with the mavic 2, if youre just coming into the industry and youre buying your first Drone yeah thats a very important point, which brings us to our next story, which also involves a mavic, its just, not a new mavic, and this might actually be the first case or the first published case that we have seen of extremely nefarious behavior with drones. Miriam ive got to say when i read this story on your site. I was kind of like ooh uh. I uh what its not its, not really its, not good yeah. That brings you happiness so whats going on here, Music. It is not good yeah, unfortunately, um a report from the joint intelligence bureau uh, which was released. It was reported by um the drive and by abc news identified, an incident uh that occurred earlier with a modified dji mavic 2. Some nefarious pilot modified their dji mavic 2 in order to attack a an electricity substation. So this is as far as we know, or as far as has been reported and documented by um.
You know the u.s security forces, the first real attempt that weve seen um by a drone on our electrical infrastructure or power infrastructure lets put it that way, so very unfortunate um. It did not succeed and i think that uh, certainly all of the powers that br are supremely aware now that these kinds of attacks um can occur. I think we are seeing many more protections go into place and more counter drone solutions being put into place over our infrastructure. But again this is a recurring theme. People need to think of security and defense now in three dimensions: its not enough to have a fence. Youve got to have um something over the top to to protect any kind of of infrastructure. So the good news it was not successful. The bad news is that um Music, you know someone a little smarter might have been so well. I mean most pilots try to avoid hitting power lines at all costs, because we know the catastrophic uh consequences of doing so. Do we have any information on who was flying the drone or, if theyre, able to track that person down? I dont know the answer to that: no, they definitely found the drone and they were able to um. You know, pull it apart and see how that it had been modified uh for this purpose. So this was the i guess the modification part was um is really just to say, theres, no doubt that this was a purposeful act.
This was not an accident, you know it wasnt, somebody it wasnt clueless or careless. It was criminal and so very unfortunate, but i think its going to wake everybody up and Music help everybody to understand that. Certainly, the professionals need to be very, very careful not to make mistakes where they can be misidentified as a problem and um. You know those those secure, uh areas do need to be secured in three dimensions and and ill go back to something that i say about this kind of thing, a lot paul witches. You know people use cars for bad things. You know im im in boston around the courthouse in boston. You see these gigantic hideous cement balls all around the courthouse designed so that you cannot drive a van directly into the courthouse. You know to keep cars away, because cars can cause damage. You know they they can um, you can put a bomb in a car, you can do whatever. So so you know we are accustomed to the fact that we need cars. There are going to be cars around cars are incredibly useful. Uh, our society relies upon them, but we need to protect. You know sensitive infrastructure or or whatever, from a nefarious actor using a car to do damage, and you know thats the way it is unfortunately yeah. Well. I know you have been getting a lot of questions about this particular story and in an effort of comedic relief.
Are you sure that this drone pilot wasnt trying to inductively charge his drone? I did get asked that im pretty sure i dont know about you. Pretty sure they werent just trying to charge their drone, it would take. It would take a induction, coil, a receiver coil and then a regulator it would. It would take a lot of infrastructure, buy a new battery Laughter, pretty sure thats, not what that was happening. Oh wow, well um man theres a lot of things that are really going on uh in the industry on kind of on both ends. It seems like in the in the reminder of security, but also in uh how available drones are are right now and how available that they will be in the future as a whole yeah. You know, i i mean think back paul to to. I always i always um found this sort of humorous. It provided many many many great stories for drone life right when drone registration came into being and it was pushed through before the holiday season and uh. Then, of course, subsequently struck down because it it hadnt been um open for the comment period and and so forth. It wasnt put in place in the correct uh way, but the reasoning for sort of pushing through drone registration was because christmas was coming, and that was an emergency because you were gon na have millions and millions of drones under the under the christmas tree and the Idea that that sort of you know christmas is an unforeseen emergency always struck me as as pretty funny but um, but i did get the point.
You know it was. It was a new and burgeoning hobby and there were going to be a lot of these in the hands of maybe not skilled, pilots very quickly well, and look at look at history, its shown of just how safe these millions of drones have truly been so, which I think is a data point in itself for our friends that regulate aviation. Well, i know weve got these two stories uh regarding mavics as a whole. Is there anything else that we are missing for this week? Miriam Music heres, another one that i thought was really interesting, and this is alterian who do the open source uh drone platform? How tyrion is based in europe and um? They just hired a new president for their government solutions section and you know normally. I dont really report on staffing and new people coming in uh rarely. But this i actually thought was interesting because it shows that alterians really pushing forward with this idea of providing open source drone technology for government solutions, the idea being that what everybody knows is the safest possible solution so um. They really believe that open source is the way to go, that open source provides ultimately the most secure and trusted solution for for governments and so thats really an interesting, an interesting approach. I think um that its worth watching and and were seeing and as more and more products are developed on the alterian platform. We are seeing sort of more options out there and and more things available, so im interested to see where that story goes.
Yeah definitely interested to see too, if i mean, if theyre, using moving that whole unit stateside. What does that mean for their drones, blue suas, uh and the like uh, because it seems like theres a lot there for sure, interesting yeah for sure all right. So i have one more thing that i have to tell you, which is that if anybody gets a chance to check out exploration, station thats exploration station, life 2.0 is the name of the show its a stem education. Show for kids, like you know, um for everybody, and the latest episode is on drones and im in it. Oh cool, very exciting, very exciting check it out. If you get a chance, awesome well definitely have to check that out miriam. Thank you again, uh for joining me and educating all of us on whats going on in the industry. We all myself included, appreciate it always fun to be here. Well, thank you. Everyone for joining us. If you uh, leave us leave us a comment. Leave us a review, let us know what you thought of the show this week very curious too.