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Kickstart this flying smartphone case

by Jacob Kleinman | May 31, 2015May 31, 2015 4:00 pm PDT

Want to send your smartphone soaring high in the air? Then this is the Kickstarter project for you. PhoneDrone is a phone case and it’s also a drone, but at the end of the day it’s so much more.

The concept behind PhoneDrone is pretty clever. Instead of buying an expensive new drone you can simply buy a case for your current smartphone. There’s also an app for Android and iOS that lets you plan out your exact route ahead of time and even take pictures from the sky.

If you have a second smartphone on hand you can also use it to control the drone mid-flight. This feature works even if one device is Android and the other is an iPhone. The entire thing works over Wi-Fi too, theoretically making it possible to control the action from a tablet instead. Down the line the company also hopes to add gesture controls, making it even easier to navigate.

The drone’s design is sleek and portable. The entire thing folds up so you can travel easily, but it’s still big enough to hold even the Nexus 6 or the iPhone 6 Plus. It can fly at up to 35 miles per hour, though the battery only lasts up to 25 minutes per charge.

If you’re interested you can pre-order PhoneDrone for as little as $99, which gets you most of the parts you’ll need for assembly along with a digital file for 3D printing the frame. You can also pay $229 to get the entire thing pre-assembled and ready to fly. Both options are set to ship in November.

The company says it’s already finalized the design, so all that’s left is to start mass production. The goal is to ship orders in time for the holiday season, though it’s possible manufacturing delays could push that back a bit. Still, if PhoneDrone can raise the full $250,000 it’s looking for it should have plenty of money to push the product through.

Kickstarter

Jacob Kleinman

Jacob Kleinman has been working as a journalist online and in print since he arrived at Wesleyan University in 2007. After graduating, he took a...

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