When I saw the box I was immediately struck by how well it was packaged and designed. It looked like some insect that just wanting to get out of the box and be released to the skies.
Setup was simple. It comes with a small battery that once placed in the drone stays there and charges in the drone.
You don't even need to have a smartphone since it comes with a Parrot Flypad which is a small RC style controller, although the smartphone does allow you to change settings and provides updates to the drone's software. This is really easy to do as it guides you every step of the way.
In quad mode it's pretty simple. It's nice to fly and does what you expect it to. but then there is X-Wing mode!... I mean PLANE mode.
Though it really is like an X-Wing fighter, just attach a few red shooting laser beams and you're Luke Skywalker blowing up the Deathstar. Flying in plane mode is a real pleasure. To get into plane mode you press the gear button on the Flypad.
Every time you press the gear button the plane goes faster and leans forward even more. It has 3 gear modes and at gear 3 the drone really starts to rocket. You forget it's a quad almost immediately.
The controls change slightly in plane mode but it is really fun getting it into the open air. taking it up a few gears and letting it rip. In gear 3 it's fast but when you press forwards to accelerate it goes even faster! Think Millennium Falcon hyperdrive.
It's very easy to lose control, especially in a small breeze which I will talk about next, however there's a little failsafe built in: when you press the takeoff/land button it resets the drone to quad mode and starts hovering again. This saves you the worry of going back down the gears like you would have to on a mountain bike.
Now... the biggest hazard to look out for. along with trees and small children is going to be the wind... because of the design of the drone itself... those wings are going to mean it acts like a kite. It catches the wind wonderfully and sometimes to its own detriment.
In a reasonable breeze it will seem sluggish and you might find that you need to take it up a few gears into plane mode just to make any headway, but you need to be mindful when you turn around because when you do it will pick up speed quickly and have a hard time turning sharply.
If there are obstacles in the way once it has the wind at its back, you might as well be flying a kamikaze mission. That said, it's extremely fun fighting against the wind only to turn it with the wind and watch how fast that little drone can go!
It rides the waves in the sky with delight, making beautiful majestic arcs around you as you fly in close for a bombing attack run or dodging around and zig zagging, pretending you're avoiding capture by a Star Destroyer.
You will get a surprisingly good amount of flight time out of this drone. Even better, you'll get more out of it when it's in plane mode. Parrot say you can get about 8.5 minutes in plane mode and in my experience it was on the money.
I took out the stopwatch and from flight to when the battery died on me it was 8 minutes 45 seconds. It takes around 30 minutes to charge and when it's ready you can see a solid green light telling you, and any nearby children, it's time to go crazy once more.
Fun to fly
Both quad and plane flight modes
Great for beginners
You need to be especially careful with this drone. The polypropylene structure. EPO wings means one crash could be fatal.
There's nothing really solid here, it's held together by a plastic framework that's designed to bend and be flexible, so best to fly above grass in open areas with little wind blowing.
|Parrot Swing Drone Specifications|
|Radio control type||Bluetooth|
|Battery||550 mAh Lipo|
|Flight controller/range||20m with smartphone.
60m with Parrot Flypad
|Flight time||7 mins in quad mode.
8-9 min in plane mode
Quad mode is only really used when taking off and landing but it really shines in plane mode. With no wind, handling is fast and responsive, however in windy conditions it struggles and you need to be extra careful.
You'll get good flight time here and longer in plane mode. When low on battery you get ample warning and could probably push it for another 30 seconds before you need to land. The smartphone app gives you a battery life percentage too but you should expect about 8 minutes fly time per charge.
Great, fun drone. The fact that it has multiple speed modes and flies for a long time is a huge plus. The drone is designed to fly like a plane and it looks incredible in the sky. It's nicely priced for the perfect Christmas gift.