Beyond the bird's-eye selfie

DJI M100
China (Guangdong)

One company that is helping to transform China’s image from manufacturer to innovator is DJI. The Shenzhen-based drone maker now is estimated to be worth over US$10 billion as it controls the largest share of the commercial drone market globally. The recently released Phantom 4 uses GPS tracking to film its subject hands-free. Snowboarders, surfers and even builders can now get that birds eye view show, without having to take their eye off their work – as the flying camera is one of the first drones with collision avoidance and object tracking.

In a bid to keep expanding its rapid growth, the company has launched the M100 – a new platform for developers to integrate any hardware or software to enable the drone to complete a wide variety of tasks beyond photography. A thermal camera allows farmers to check on crops and the drones have been used to find factories emitting high levels of pollution into rivers. Police forces are even now using the M100 to find illegally parked cars.

Written by

Tom Pattinson (19 March 2016)


Tom is a writer and commentator on culture, society and lifestyle in Asia, where he has been based for 15 years.

Project leader

Frank Wang, Founder and CEO

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