We first met UVify at CES 2018, where we were expecting to see many drones, small drones for children, big drones for professionals and everything in between, and we did! The team at UVify had a big presence on the show floor, and even more so at the Drone Rodeo – they stood out for me and even announced a small drone I didn’t think I’d love, boy was I wrong.
In addition to their Draco racing drones that won awards in previous years at CES, they were showing off their AI efforts and the UVify OOri, a mini drone safe to fly indoors, but also able to hit over 50mph on the race track. That was the beginning of our relationship with UVify, and only a beginning for all the drones they now offer. Let’s see all the machines that UVify has to offer.
Update 2021: UVify is finding great success in the light show industry. You’ll find some examples down below. While that side of the business continues to grow, they’ve reduced their efforts on the consumer drone market. You can expect continued support for your OOri or Draco drones, but don’t be surprised if they are not as readily available for purchase in the future.
Why trust Drone Rush?
I’ve been a fan of flight since a young age; while I’ve had few opportunities at the helm of manned aircraft, the hours on my fleet of drones continue to grow. I enjoy putting cameras into the sky, silky smooth aerial imagery makes me happy. My goal is to help all pilots enjoy flight legally and safely.
Artificial Intelligence – autonomy
In addition to all of the below, the Draco R now also offers RTK precision navigation. UVify may have landed in the mainstream for their racing efforts, but I was highly impressed by their AI work. At CES 2018, particularly at the Drone Rodeo, they were demoing their prototypes for autonomous flight. The prototype worked its way through an obstacle course, showing its ability to self navigate.
These efforts are destined for applications such as search and rescue, warehousing and more. More importantly, this research leads to features and functions that are going into their other drones.
We should note a fun fact, they are using the NVIDIA Jetson as the computing system in their largest prototypes. As we know, this means there is a ton of computing power on deck to handle all of the navigational needs of the drone.
We’re eager to explore this topic a lot more in the future, for now, racing drones!
The long-armed prototype of the Draco we witnessed in 2018 has evolved into a full drone series with DR1 Racing. The new UVify Draco-4×4 packs sixteen motors onto a long-armed Draco, and is covered in LEDs to make things bright. The concept is pretty simple, drone racing is fantastic fun for pilots, but a little hard to follow for the audience. By making larger drones, it will be easier for onlookers to appreciate the event. Pilots should enjoy the experience as well, requiring them to learn new flight techniques and endure larger courses.
Having been in the flight cage while the Draco-4×4 is flying, I can promise you your heart will pick up pace when you see this drone in action.
Because the Draco is so modular, the 4×4 version is just an update away for current Draco owners. Longer arms, a bigger battery, and a ton of fun coming soon.
Unboxing and setup:
IFO commercial drones
We had a great time hanging out with the UVify team at CES 2018. They had a fun booth with one of the best flying cages I’ve seen, drone simulators set up to play and plenty of friendly faces to answer any questions.
We are, without a doubt, going to have to keep an eye on UVify moving forward. The drones and technology, more specifically, the capabilities of their consumer drones, are on par with the best machines from the top companies out there. I can’t begin to tell you how significant that is for how small of a company UVify is.
Frequently Asked Questions
Drone racing started out as friends bringing whatever they had to the track, more recently, you’ll find classifications for racing drones, the UVify Draco series are what you might call full-size production drones. To be honest, the Draco drones are comparatively big and heavy, they do not take corners anywhere near as fast as some of the smaller agile drones, however, they absolutely dominate on the straightaway with a huge top speed.
Honestly, we really enjoyed watching the UVify team fly in the mountains with a GoPro strapped to their Draco drones, the machines covered lots of ground and captured some fun footage.
UVify understands that you may have the desire to put on a fun drone light show, but that it could cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to buy all of the equipment needed to do so. Basically, when we talk about drones as a service from UVify, we’re talking about a leasing program that puts a fleet of drones in your hands for a fraction of the cost to buy them outright.
Plus, UVify will stand by you for educations, support and replacements.
If you are looking to actually pilot your craft, to gain some skills with the sticks and have a drone that grows with you through different flight modes and speed limitations, the OOri is a superb solution. Otherwise, the UVify OOri is a tough recommendation for the average pilot. If you are just looking for a camera drone, this isn’t it.