Skydio evolves its Autonomy Engine with the introduction of a developer platform, new cinematic skills, and a streamlined version of their groundbreaking R1 drone.
Skydio, makers of the first generally-available fully autonomous consumer vehicle, the self-flying camera, Skydio R1, today announced the next step in the evolution of this automated flying robot. While R1 has already shown consumers the future of self-capture, giving anyone the ability to have a virtual film crew follow and capture their best moments, this was merely the beginning of unlocking the benefits of autonomous cinematography. The R1, like any robot, can be programmed to perform a wide variety of tasks. The software brain for R1, The Skydio Autonomy Engine, is a platform that uses cutting-edge computer vision and machine learning algorithms to see and understand the world around it. Today, Skydio is taking it to the next level with the introduction of:
1. The Skydio Autonomy Platform: a toolset that enables third-party developers to build any number of Skills — application-specific behaviours with possibilities spanning consumer and commercial use cases — on top of R1’s powerful autonomy engine, using the same exact tools as Skydio’s own engineers.
2. A new set of Skills, built by Skydio on the Skydio Autonomy Platform, that allow one-touch access to amazing cinematic maneuvers, including shots such as Dronie and Rocket (among others), as well as completely new ways of capturing stunning content, even in complex environments, that would be nigh-impossible to film with a manually-flown drone.
“The Skydio R1 is a new type of drone, built on breakthroughs in subject tracking, path planning, mapping, scene understanding, and collision avoidance. With the release of the Skydio Autonomy Platform, our core technology can be accessed by third-party developers to add an infinite number of additional Skills for a wide range of use cases” said Adam Bry, CEO and co-founder of Skydio. “We are really excited to see what developers will do.
Building on the Skydio Autonomy Platform means harnessing the full weight of the state-of-the-art in AI and robotics to solve your problem” he added.
The Skydio Autonomy Platform features include:
● Skills SDK allows developers to create new Skills for Skydio R1 in a few lines of Python via a rich set of APIs. Skills can be easily shared with other Skydio owners via the Developer Console.
○ Lets developers set waypoints and issue movement commands to R1 (with the safety of
Skydio’s 360-degree obstacle avoidance), make 3D map distance queries to understand
the environment around R1, track subjects — including both people and cars — and
define how it should move around them. From structure scanning photogrammetry,
autonomous security applications, to filming sports in completely new ways, the use
cases are boundless.
○ Leverage relevant, comprehensive R1 telemetry signals: takeoff-relative position, speed,
distance from the ground, location, user location, battery levels, temperature, and more.
● Mobile SDKs allows developers to deliver the ideal user experience for your use case by building iOS or Android apps that can control Skydio R1 and access any stock or custom Skills.
● Skydio’s simulator allows for quick iteration by running your Skills on a simulated R1 in a virtual 3D environment, all from a web browser.
R1’s new Skills:
With today’s software update, creators can dynamically capture cinematic shots using new Cable-Cam and One-Shot Skills. Cable-Cam is great for capturing video that would otherwise require booms, dollies, and a film crew, while one-shots create stunning, shareable clips that can be triggered with a single tap.
● Cable Cam – allows users to pilot R1 to specific positions and orientations and then reliably retrace the flight path between two points, all while maintaining full obstacle avoidance, and optionally tracking a subject.
● New Skills focused on One-Shot actions, including Dronie, Boomerang, Vortex, and Rocket.
These new skills are quickly triggered and are perfect for getting short shareable clips for social media, or to quickly get a wide variety of angles for longer videos. The Skydio app also includes a new Stabilize option in the clip creator tool for making clips even smoother, a perfect final touch to get clips made with these new skills ready for sharing.
Making the power of autonomy more accessible than ever, Skydio is partnering with Omni, a rentals company that will enable easy access for adventurers and creators to get their hands on R1 in both the Bay Area and soon Portland. With Omni, you can now rent an R1 for your next trip, adventure, or family outing.
Finally, Skydio has been iterating and improving its production capabilities and streamlining the design of R1 since launch. We have completely sold out of the limited edition Frontier Edition R1s, and are excited to begin shipping mass production R1s, starting today for $1,999.
Skydio R1 is available in the USA and Canada for developers, adventurers, and creators alike at