Snap Unveils a Flying Drone Digicam Known as Pixy

Snap, the maker of the Snapchat messaging app, has lengthy positioned itself as a digital camera firm.

On Thursday, it unveiled a flying one. Known as Pixy, the drone digital camera might help individuals take selfies with out assistance from a selfie stick. Customers maintain the pocket-size digital camera of their palm and choose a flight mode by way of a dial on the machine’s physique. The gadget then flies for a minute, taking photographs and movies that it downloads to the person’s personal Snapchat drive earlier than touchdown again within the person’s palm.

“It offers you a completely new perspective, really means that you can have enjoyable and go hang around with your loved ones and create movies all collectively,” Evan Spiegel, Snap’s chief govt, stated in an interview.

Pixy is Snap’s first {hardware} product since Spectacles, which had been glasses with embedded cameras and augmented-reality options. Spectacles debuted to hourslong lines in 2016 however in the end underperformed. In 2021, Snap launched a brand new model of Spectacles that allow individuals see augmented-reality filters overlaid on the bodily world.

Snap is promoting Pixy for $229.99, with extra batteries for $19.99 and a twin battery charger for $49.99. The corporate stated it deliberate to promote the digital camera “whereas provides final” in the USA and France.

In 2020, Amazon additionally introduced a flying digital camera, the $249 Ring At all times House Cam. The surveillance drone flies round its proprietor’s dwelling and data video, ostensibly for safety functions. It was immediately pilloried on social media as a privateness hazard.

Mr. Spiegel stated he was unfamiliar with Amazon’s product. He stated Snap’s flying digital camera was not a privateness drawback as a result of its brilliant yellow colour, recording mild and engine sounds made it conspicuous.

“I don’t suppose there are privateness considerations in the case of different individuals being recorded with out their data,” he stated.

Snap introduced Pixy alongside a collection of augmented-reality merchandise — which overlay filters and visible results on the actual world — at its annual occasion for builders and advertisers. It additionally launched new instruments for companies that permit buyers to nearly attempt on their merchandise. Snap stated individuals had engaged with its merchandise for augmented-reality shopping 5 billion instances since January 2021.

“We see our greatest alternative over time to actually be reinventing the digital camera,” Mr. Spiegel stated. “Pixy is a continuation of this experimentation and innovation round what the digital camera is able to.”