LAS VEGAS — You’re snowboarding down a gorgeous snowy mountain. Everything is perfect — the scenery, the conditions, your perfect moves. How are you going to preserve these moments?
The Hexo+ drone was designed for just that occasion. At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas last week, I talked to professional snowboarder Xavier de le Rue, who has worked with company Squadrone to develop the Hexo+ drone.
The Hexo+ sports six propellers arranged in a diamond-like shape for maximum speed and functionality: the drone can achieve speeds of up to approximately 45 miles per hour.
Coming off a successful Kickstarter campaign last summer, the Hexo+ is now available for preorder on Squadrone’s website for $1,149, and will ship in September 2015. The Hexo+ does not come with a built-in camera; instead, it comes with a gimbal designed to fit a GoPro camera.
Though it can be controlled via an iOS or Android app via a Bluetooth connection, the Hexo+ was really designed to operate hands-free. The drone follows the smartphone owner via its onboard GPS, filming you with its attached camera all the while.
On the app, you can choose how closely you want the Hexo+ to follow you, which determines the framing of the recorded video. You can save your framing preferences within the app. Hexo+ can also be preset to perform timed camera movements such as circling or zooming forward or back.
The Hexo+ has 15 minutes of battery life with a GoPro attached, so extreme-sports enthusiasts will have to plan accordingly. For example, de le Rue explained, you’ll need to know that a given mogul or jump occurs five minutes into a run, and set the Hexo+ to perform the desired motion at that time.
Jill Scharr is a staff writer for Tom’s Guide, where she regularly covers security, 3D printing and video games. You can follow Jill on Twitter @JillScharr and on Google+. Follow us @tomsguide, on Facebook and on Google+.