DJI Announces the Phantom 4, a new Drone with Advanced Computer Vision and Sensing Technology

DJI is a familiar name if you are interested in Aerial Photography, as they are the Premiere Manufacturer of Drones like the Phantom and Inspire lines that many photographers rely on to get photos and videos of their subjects from the air.

p4_1_1000px.jpgNow, DJI is launching the Phantom 4, a drone they are promoting as starting a "new era of intelligent flying cameras", since it features innovations including highly advanced computer vision and sensing technology to make professional aerial imaging easier for everyone, with obstacle avoidance and intelligent tracking features so that less experience is needed to get great aerial camera footage.

DJI also says that the Phantom 4's camera has been redesigned to include improved optics with better corner sharpness and less chromatic aberrations compared to previous models, and it also features DJI's signature "Lightbridge" video transmission system, allowing users to see what the camera is seeing in real time at distances up to 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) on smart devices.

The gimbal has also be redesigned to have more aerodynamic lines, with better stability and vibration dampening, with a better center of gravity using a design that helps prevent the drone's propellers from getting into the captured video and photos.

p4_2_1000px.jpgOther improvements included in the new Phantom 4 include extended flight time of up to 28 minutes, dual compasses on board, and new "push-and-lock" propellers that are faster and easier to install.

The Phantom 4 also includes a new "Sport Mode" for advanced users, allowing it to fly at up to 20 meters per second  (45 miles per hour), with faster ascent and descent times to allow users to capture action that may not be possible with slower drone models.

Yet, it still includes many automated functions that allow less experienced drone users to capture great video and photos from its camera, making it a great choice for both beginners and seasoned professionals.

The new Phantom 4 will be available in the U.S. on April 1, 2016 for approximately $1399, with pre-orders starting as early as March 23 of this month.

Some of the related Articles about DJI Products from Steve's Digicams:

DJI Announces the Zenmuse X5 and X5R - Advanced Micro Four Thirds Cameras for Aerial Photography

DJI Launches New Phantom 3 Professional and Advanced Aerial Drones

DJI Announces the Phantom 3 4K and Inspire 1 Pro Black Edition - Drone Platforms for Aerial Photography

See the press release below for more details about the new Phantom 4, including a comparison table with the existing Phantom 3 Advanced and Professional Models that highlights some of the differences between them.


DJI Launches New Era of Intelligent Flying Cameras

New DJI Phantom 4 features obstacle avoidance, intelligent tracking and a simplified flying experience

NEW YORK, March 1, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- DJI, the world's leading maker of unmanned aerial vehicles, on Tuesday launched the Phantom 4, the first consumer quadcopter camera (or "drone") to use highly advanced computer vision and sensing technology to make professional aerial imaging easier for everyone.

The Phantom 4 expands on previous generations of DJI's iconic Phantom line by adding new on-board intelligence that make piloting and shooting great shots simple through features like its Obstacle Sensing System, ActiveTrack and TapFly functionality.

"With the Phantom 4, we are entering an era where even beginners can fly with confidence," said DJI CEO Frank Wang. "People have dreamed about one day having a drone collaborate creatively with them. That day has arrived."

The Phantom 4's Obstacle Sensing System features two forward-facing optical sensors that scan for obstacles and automatically direct the aircraft around the impediment when possible, reducing risk of collision, while ensuring flight direction remains constant. If the system determines the craft cannot go around the obstacle, it will slow to a stop and hover until the user redirects it. Obstacle avoidance also engages if the user triggers the drone's "Return to Home" function to reduce the risk of collision when automatically flying back to its take off point.

With ActiveTrack, the Phantom 4 breaks new ground, allowing users running the DJI Go app on iOS and Android devices to follow and keep the camera centered on the subject as it moves simply by tapping the subject on their smartphone or tablet. Perfectly-framed shots of moving joggers or cyclists, for example, simply require activating the ActiveTrack mode in the app.

The Phantom 4 understands three-dimensional images and uses machine learning to keep the object in the shot, even when the subject changes its shape or turns while moving. Users have full control over camera movement while in ActiveTrack mode - and can even move the camera around the object while it is in motion as the Phantom 4 keeps the subject framed in the center of the shot autonomously. A "pause" button on the Phantom 4's remote controller allows the user to halt an autonomous flight at any time, leaving the drone to hover.

By using the TapFly function in the DJI Go app, users can double-tap a destination for their Phantom 4 on the screen, and the Phantom 4 calculates an optimal flight route to reach the destination, while avoiding any obstructions in its path. Tap another spot and the Phantom 4 will smoothly transition towards that destination making even the beginner pilot look like a seasoned professional.

The Phantom 4's camera, still the world's best aerial-optimized 4K imaging device, has undergone an upgrade that includes improved optics for better corner sharpness and reduced chromatic aberration. The Phantom 4 also has DJI's signature Lightbridge video transmission system onboard, allowing users to see what their camera sees in HD and in real-time on their smart devices at a distance up to five kilometers (3.1 miles).

The Phantom 4's form factor, still the classic quadcopter style pioneered by DJI, has been redesigned and redefined to emphasize elegance and smoother, more-aerodynamic lines. Its frame incorporates a lightweight composite core to provide enhanced stability and more-agile flight. The core now features a redesigned gimbal that provides more stability and vibration dampening, and has been repositioned for a better center of gravity and to reduce the risk of propellers getting in the shot.

Refinements to motor efficiency, power management and a new intelligent battery have extended the Phantom 4's flight time to 28 minutes, which means more time in the air to capture professional photos and video.

DJI crafted the Phantom 4 with reliability in mind, including redundant inertial measurement units (IMUs) and dual compasses onboard. It uses new push-and-lock propellers that are faster to install and more secure in flight.

In addition to intelligence and ease-of-use, the Phantom 4 is built for fun. Its new "Sport Mode" for advanced flyers gives a taste of what drone racing feels like. In "Sport Mode," the Phantom 4 can fly 20 meters per second (45 miles per hour) and ascends and descends more rapidly than in other modes. The craft's acceleration and top speed in "Sport Mode" also mean it can reach locations for shots faster and capture shots you couldn't get before.

"Though the Phantom 4 is easy to use, let's not forget it is a high-performance aircraft powered by unparalleled DJI technology," said Senior Product Manager Paul Pan.

The Phantom 4's U.S. retail price is $1,399.

Availability from DJI and Apple
Pre-orders for the Phantom 4 will start March 1 on and, and customers will begin receiving their units on March 15. The Phantom 4 will also be available in-store at DJI's flagship stores and Apple stores around the world starting March 15.

Additional Availability
Phantom 4 pre-orders from DJI's other sales partners will commence on March 23, with availability from April 1.

For more information about the Phantom 4, please visit
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For added confidence, U.S. customers can purchase six months of DJI Care for $229 or one year of DJI Care for $299 along with their Phantom 4. See for more details.


Phantom 4

Phantom 3 (Professional & Advanced)

Weight of Aircraft

(Battery Included)



Max. Flight Speed

20m/s (Sport Mode)

16m/s (Atti Mode)

Max. Ascent/Descent Speed

6m/s ascending (Sport Mode);

4m/s descending (Sport Mode)

5m/s ascending;

3m/s descending

Flight Time

28 mins

Approx. 23 mins

Obstacle Sensing System


Effective range is 0.7 - 15m


Vision Positioning System


Effective range is 0-10m


Effective range is 0.3-3m

Slow Motion Video Recording


Resolution: 1920*1080@120fps


Intelligent Flight Battery Capacity

5350 mAh

4480 mAh

About DJI
DJI is a global leader in developing and manufacturing innovative drone and camera technology for commercial and recreational use. DJI was founded and is run by people with a passion for remote-controlled helicopters and experts in flight-control technology and camera stabilization. The company is dedicated to making aerial photography and filmmaking equipment and platforms more reliable and easier to use for creators and innovators around the world. DJI's global operations currently span North America, Europe and Asia, and its revolutionary products and solutions have been chosen by customers in over 100 countries; for applications in film, advertising, construction, fire fighting, farming, and many other industries.

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