DJI Inspire 3 Released, Mavic 3 Pro, Wing Testifies in Congress, Florida DMS Roasted
This week in drone News, we have three stories for you. The first one is that the DJI Inspire 3 is finally here, and also another drone from DJI, the Mavic 3 Pro, looks like it's around the corner. Wings CEO testified before Congress, and lastly, some heated discussion about Florida's DJI ban. Let's get to it!
Two new DJI drones: Inspire 3 and Mavic 3 Pro
Our first story this week looks like DJI will be releasing two big drones in the next few weeks. The long, long, long-awaited Inspire 3 will be released on April 13th, and instead of the usual dark, mysterious, and nondescript photos of the drone that we usually see for a product announcement, it looks like DJI pretty much revealed the entire drone this time.
At first sight, it looks very much like the Inspire 2, with the retractable landing gear and the iconic V-shaped arms, and the camera hanging from the main body.
Speaking of the camera, it is rumored to have the Zenmuse X9, the 6K and 8K version, which was released last year with the Ronin 4D. We kind of hoped that this would be the case because it makes sense, right?
At this stage, there is not a whole lot else that we know about the drone, other than the fact that DJI will be releasing the event live from their YouTube channel on April 13th. So, we look forward to hearing more rumors in the next couple of days before its release.
DJI Mavic 3 Pro
But that's not it for DJI. After the Mavic 3, the Cine, the Classic, the Enterprise, the Thermal, and the Multispectral, it looks like they will be releasing yet another Mavic 3, this time the Mavic 3 Pro.
The drone appears to be equipped with three Hasselblad lenses, and its remote will have three lenses, similar to the technology that we see in cell phones, where you have three different levels of zoom, allowing for much better overall image quality.
It's expected to be announced at NAB, the National Association of Broadcasters, which is right around the corner in Las Vegas.
The drone was shown packaged with both the DJI RC and the RC Pro controllers, as well as a new set of Filters due to the new look of the front of the drone.
The batteries are likely to be exactly the same as the Mavic 3's because, well, that's what DJI has been doing. Now, there's no pricing at this point, but we'll let you know when we hear more.
Wing CEO testifies before Congress
Alright, in the second story, let's talk about Adam Woodworth, who's the Wing CEO, who testified before Congress and actually made some pretty good points.
A new Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act is right around the corner, and here's a chance for Congress to tell the FAA what to do next. If you remember the last authorization act, we got quite a few changes, including Remote ID and a few other things.
In this case, Woodworth laid out nine points for Congress to consider during the reauthorization act in order to make drone regulation, and I quote, “predictable and pragmatic,” which, well, you'd think that would make sense.
He asked the FAA to consider treating smaller drones, including Wing's 11-pound foam aircraft, differently than the 400-pound airliner, which they are currently using as regulation, which, at this stage, well, kind of makes sense if you think about it.
He also asked for a risk-based approach, which quite frankly, I've been asking for a long time as well, to help move forward with visual line-of-sight operation. And also to make it more predictable in the future for any type of approval process, which also, I think, makes sense.
Woodworth also thinks that it's time for the FAA to have what he calls an Associate Administrator to oversee UAS operation and certification.
This is something that we've discussed, actually, quite at length in our Pixel Drone shows with a lot of different guests and Haye from DroneXL. It's time, I think, for the FAA to start looking at drones as almost like its own branch and then start to put manpower behind it.
We're pretty anxious to see what the reauthorization language is going to be, and we'll keep you posted as soon as we hear more.
DJI drone ban in Florida
And then, the last story this week: let's take a look at the Florida Department of Management Services Secretary getting absolutely roasted by Senator Jason Pizzo during one of the Senate committee meetings. The Florida Senator accused the DMS Secretary of “pimping” for U.S.-based drone maker Skydio.
Yes, this is the company they were talking about. This comes after several First Responders were given the opportunity to speak and address their concerns about not being allowed to buy and use Chinese-made drones, such as the DJI platform.
Some of the first responders explained that the Blue UAS are more expensive or offer fewer features, can't fly in the dark, and some of them even catch on fire. There was a story in there, and then also fall out of the sky.
The cost of replacing all of the current drones in Florida will be around $200 million for Florida taxpayers, and a lot of them said that this would put their lives at risk as first responders but also the lives of the people they're trying to rescue using the drones.
You can watch the full video; it's a little over an hour long, but it's actually a great discussion. I will put a link to the DroneXL article down below too.
Alright, so that's it for now. We're finally back from Florida after spending a week at Sun ‘n Fun in Lakeland, and we're ready to resume regular service. So, we'll see you guys next week!
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