12 January 2021
Sony has officially launched its Airpeak S1 professional drone. It is the first-ever drone released by the company and marks the commercial debut of the Airpeak lineup. The drone was first showcased at CES 2021 earlier this year but now, all of its technical specs and features have been revealed along with pricing and availability details.
The Airpeak S1 is being touted as "the world's smallest drone that can be equipped with a full-size mirrorless interchangeable-lens Alpha camera". The pricing of the drone is around $9,000 and it excludes any of the official accessories that one might want to purchase. It is a clear indication that Sony is strictly targeting professionals with the drone as the ones meant for casual users are priced much cheaper.
It is capable of hitting a top speed of 90kmph/55mph within just 3.5 seconds. This makes it one of the fastest drones that one can get at this price point. As mentioned in the beginning, one can use it with a wide range of Alpha cameras (like Alpha 7S/7R/9 series and FX3) to shoot content in top-notch quality. It can further hold a stable position in strong wind speeds up to 44.7mph.
The drone's flight time is up to 22 minutes without load and about just 12 minutes with the load. It should be noted that the user will have to use separate batteries for the camera. It is packed with front, rear, left, and right stereo cameras along with an IR sensor at the top for obstacle detection. This will allow it to automatically decelerate and stop according to the behavior of the aircraft and the surrounding conditions.
Airpeak Flight is the official companion app for the drone. It is available only for iPhone and iPad at the moment and will let you control different aspects of the drone and flight. There is a dual-operation mode where one user can operate the drone and another user can control the gimbal and camera.
If you are interested in buying the Sony Airpeak S1, the $9,000 price tag will get you the drone along with two pairs of propellers, a remote controller, dual batteries, and a battery charger. It will be made available for pre-order sometime this fall but Sony is yet to reveal the regions where it will be sold.