Flying the 3D Robotics Iris in Crissy Field, San Francisco
I recently had the opportunity to fly the new 3D Robotics IRIS with Eddie Codel of Eddie.com at Crissy Field in San Francisco, near the Golden Gate Bridge. It is the first truly ready-to-fly (RTF) model that the company has released, and flies very well out of the box. I have flown their Y6 hexacopter previously and loved the education that having to fine tune the onboard computer provided, but the IRIS hits a much larger and more profitable demographic. The molded plastic body refines the look of the aircraft and protects the electronics. It also provides a Gopro compatible mounting point up front. The IRIS is also the company’s first production aircraft equipped with the Pixhawk, with higher computing power of the 32-bit processor, among a host of other improvements upon the existing APM 2.x microcontroller board. The IRIS is 3DRobotics’ first offering that competes head on with DJI’s Phantom line. This seems to be just the beginning of a larger RTF offering. It will be interesting to see what they develop for the consumer, prosumer, and commercial segments in the coming year or two.