Home NewsEnd-Of-Summer Update
  • BobJ

    Reply

    I hope your new targets are pessimistic. It’s been a moving target. If I project your hit rate on commits vs actuals, this is looking like 2017 to satisfy pre-orders. I got to have one regardless of brand by early December so this is looking like I am in a tough spot.

  • Justin Bishop

    Reply

    BobJ yeah if I were you I’d expect not to make it. Seen any videos of the GoPro Karma? 🙂

    • James Squires

      Reply

      The Karma looks like a cool product. They are still in pre-sale as well so we don’t know all of their specs. However, it still seems like there are some big disadvantages with the Karma. It does fold up, but is still pretty big and requires a full back pack to hold the controller and accessories. It still has dangerously exposed blades. The field of view of the GoPro is not optimized for aerial footage.

  • Dustin

    Reply

    For me, this is very disappointing. I will give you until December, if you miss that target I will be requesting my money back. I made my purchase on March 8th with great anticipation. Every update since then has been a disappointment with pushing the fulfillment date out further and further. Other drones may not be optimal, but they are at least usable right now. :-/

  • Ken

    Reply

    Still patiently waiting.

  • BobJ

    Reply

    Justin Bishop, I’ve seen the GoPro Karma. It is huge, not as portable, and it is unsafe. I would think the real competition will come from DJI Mavic. They got the experience, it is small – just slightly larger than the palm when folded, and feature-rich as seen from the sensors around it. With that said, It is tough to forgo the safety that Snap can provide particularly drones are now going mainstream – out of the pro and prosumer market and into homes. Snap is the only one that has most of the boxes checked. It is great for family, travel, and indoor shoots.

  • Jim

    Reply

    When will the phone app to control Snap be available for download? It would be great to see what the interface looks and have a chance to study it before my order arrives.

  • Gizmo

    Reply

    Not really unexpected news but I’d rather have a product that works as promised instead of a rushed half hearted one that doesn’t deliver as promised.
    The Karma is of no interest to me due to weight/size & those deadly props.
    That said there are many other options opening up for buyers, none as beautiful & safe as yours as yet!.
    Keep working hard for us please so we can have them under our trees for Christmas.

  • Gizmo2001

    Reply

    Not really unexpected news but I’d rather have a product that works as promised instead of a rushed half hearted one that doesn’t deliver as promised.
    The Karma is of no interest to me due to weight/size & those deadly props.
    That said there are many other options opening up for buyers, none as beautiful & safe as yours as yet!.
    Keep working hard for us please so we can have them under our trees for Christmas.

  • Kevin Wickens

    Reply

    BobJ you took the words right out of my mouth. I pushed back my fall engagement photo trip in the hopes of having Snap in my hands by then to get some really awesome engagement photos from the top of some of the most beautiful castles and ruins in Portugal. Fingers crossed. Fingers crossed. The Mavic is certainly going to have a tonne of features compared to other drones of its size but I truly believe and agree with you that safety comes first. But it’s not just a question of safety either. I believe that due to the shrouded blade design of the snap, as video creators and artists we’ll be able to capture key elements of a story that are just not possible with some of the other drones.

    I think the video that Vantage posted a while back of the kids ridding around at the skate park is a perfect example of footage, a video story if you will, that could not have been filmed using other drones currently in the marketplace without putting those children at serious risk. The end result would have been the decision to have the drone hover far above the children to avoid any contact and therefore not be able to get the shots that were depicted in that video.

    So far I think Snap still has that major advantage over the competition. There are just so many up close shots that you would not feel comfortable trying to get with any other drone other than Snap. Come on pre-orders! Power of the Universe! No more delays! No more delays! Fingers, toes, nose, ears all crossed!

  • Marcus Hawksley

    Reply

    Whilst I’m glad you are making the effort to ensure the finished product is going to meet expectations/promises, I can’t help but feel that you are exaggerating your timetable.
    By your schedule, you will be shipping betas in the beginning of November. After time to debug/adjust any issues that come to light and considering your current development rates you aren’t looking at shipping an actual finished non beta product until December at the earliest.
    I would rather wait and receive the product you have been promising. But by your previous posts I find it hard to have faith what you are telling us about timing. It would be nice if you could be more open about your expected shipping schedule, when are you expecting to begin manufacturing, what kind of volumes are you planning to produce at what rate.
    As a gardener in Finland, I have missed the opportunity for any summer shots and the best of the autumn colour is fading. However much time I might have to play with it in the winter, it will actually be a year after the initial expected delivery date before I am going to use this camera for its intended purpose.
    The fact that Snap still has a set of specs covering size, imaging and safety as yet unrivaled, proves the potential for your product.Yet, we are left waiting for you demonstrate that this potential will actually be realised.
    Please keep us informed much more regularly and kindly be more transparent about your progress.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment here Marcus. These dates are our best guess right now. It is always possible that future events can delay us further, but we are confident on honest in the timetable we posted. We will however, try to keep the updates more regular.

  • Ralph

    Reply

    I am planning on using Snap to take aerial shots while sailing. This means launching and recovering the drone from moving sailboat (slow moving) with lifelines, sails, and rigging that must be avoided. From my experience with a Phantom 3 std trying to take off and land on the deck is a problematic. 2 questions: I have seen a number of promo shots of Snap being launched and recovered by hand. Is it true that that is the expected normal procedure? 2. Can you tell at what speed Snap can collide with an object and simply bounce off with crashing?
    Because I am counting on these features for my intended use.
    To bad your new schedule is so late that you won’t have much chance at Christmas sales.
    Thanks, Ralph

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Yes, we most often end the flight by grabbing it out of the air. There is actually a really cool feature that we are about to post where, while hold Snap at the end of your flight, you can quickly rotate the camera 90 degrees to disarm the flight.

      There are a lot of factors involved in your question about how fast Snap can hit a moving object and still recover. Anecdotally though, we have seen some pretty amazing recoveries in some of our flights.

  • Peter

    Reply

    Go Pro Karma not a chance . I’m happy to wait for Snap as it ticks all the boxes regarding portability , safety and an easy to use drone l that I feel anyone in my family can use safely.

  • Chris

    Reply

    I had a serious look at Karma and Mavic but I need a drone that I can safely hand launch and retrieve from the side of a cliff while fatigued. There is no comparison to snap in that regard so I am happy to wait. Also if that 1 hour rotor set becomes a reality that will be amazing for those week long trips into the mountains which currently there is no point taking any drone on the market due to size and spare battery weight VS flight time.

  • PatH

    Reply

    I’m patiently waiting like everyone else, but this is the last item I ever pre-order. Delivery dates are always wildly optimistic from every company, regardless of how much “experience” they all tout…

    I still think you have the best product, Snap, but who knows if that’ll still be the case when it releases.

  • Ralph

    Reply

    What about launching Snap from your hand?

  • Desmond wong

    Reply

    Competition is definitely heating up in the drone industry for 2016. Though Snap still has its edge in terms of safety n portability for now but each delay updates are giving opportunities for others to catch up n overtake you with better product sooner or later, as proved with Mavic. Pls buckle up n launch Snap for all your backers by year end X’mas.

  • Dale Scott

    Reply

    I pre-ordered mine on the 11.11.15 and live in Western Australia. To be honest I had almost written it off as a bad investment. Hopefully we see ours sometime in the early new year. Have you got an estimate delivery date for overseas customers. Thanks.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry for the delays Dale. We don’t have any firm dates, but hope to ship all pre-orders this year. International shipping is a bit more complicated, but we hope to have it all sorted very soon.

  • Michael Large

    Reply

    Hi James, Yes I agree, it’s very important to keep us informed, even if it’s just a few words in an email every now and then.
    Also, I did expect delays when I signed up so for me and others I am happy to wait for an A1 product.

    On another note, not sure if this has been mentioned, will the electronics / circuitry etc of the Snap be coated with silicone or similar to stop possible corrosion after flying near the sea / coast line as salt spray is can be a real issue with many components ?

    Other than that, keep up with the great work :))

    Michael from Crystal Brook, South Australia

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Michael. We do not plan on coating any of the circuits, but they will be sealed inside the body, so should not be affected by sea air.

  • Peter Herweijer

    Reply

    Just over a week ago Facebook reminded me of the one year that had passed since pre-ordering my Snap. But being a three time grandfather next to my maritime photographers work I agree that ending up with a quad that’s safe to fly around my family beats the rpas that you want to land as soon as the kids show up.

  • Guy Breden

    Reply

    Hello,
    I have preordered my Snap 2 month ego an hope to receive it around Christmas time 🙂
    A question about the options (Wifi extender, better battery life, +++) are they available soon?
    I like to be a Beta-Tester because i write Apps (informaticien) and so can go deeper 😉
    Thanks
    Guy from Luxembourg (Europe)

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Guy. We hope to get you flying by Xmas! We are focusing entirely on pre-sale orders. Once that is tackled, we will shift gears and focus in the first wave of accessories. They should be out early next year.

  • Thor

    Reply

    Based on your comment about quickly rotating the Snap 90 degrees to shut it down, should you hit something that twists it rapidly 90 degrees… like, perhaps someone running past it, a bike passing it, something hitting it… will it shut down — will it drop? or is that just a shutdown routine only available when in a particular mode of flight is activated? As this machine/camera/platform is destined to be used in active situations, it would not be a stretch to believe this could happen.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      It seems very unlikely that something could bump into Snap hard enough to make it quickly rotate 90 degrees. We haven’t seen that happen yet. However, if we find that to be an issue, we will make sure to address it.

  • Markus

    Reply

    Hi guys, are there any plans to work with a reseller in Germany yet? Depending on how the device would be classified customs could add up to 35% on the price tag otherwise…

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Right now, we are focusing entirely on filling our pre-sale orders. Once the dust has settled there, we will start reaching out to international distributors.

  • Brian Eiffe

    Reply

    When will the extended flight option be available.
    Will it be possible for delivery when my order is dispatched to Australia or it be an addition freight item.
    I want to film my travels down the River Murray in my house boat as well as travels in my motor home so I feel the extended flight time would be of great help.
    Have given many your web pages so hope you are getting interest from over here for your product

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the support Brian! Right now, we are focusing entirely on filling our pre-sale orders. Once the dust has settled there, we will start rolling out accessories.

  • Joan S

    Reply

    Thanks for the update! Wish it was November and December nowwwww, but just a few more months… 🙂

  • Raphael

    Reply

    First let me say I’m more than excited to get my hands on the Snap. Especially if it is all it seems to be, great work to the whole team! A few questions:

    How much will extra batteries cost and will I be able to purchase one to have shipped with my snap?

    How long till the high-speed flight rotor set is made available and any idea on cost? ($100 or $1000, just looking for a general idea).

    How long till range extenders (cell or otherwise) are made available?

    If you guys are using the Snap all the time why not post more footage of it in action? Since I’ve pre-ordered a few days ago I’ve looked all over the web but can only find the limited marketing footage you’ve provided. Most of the shots provided are during low speed maneuvering. While the footage is smooth, stable and crisp, I’d love more examples of the FC (flying camera) in action. If you guys have been using it for months as stated in this news update, where is all that beautiful footage???? To be honest it makes me feel a little like you’re not telling us something with so little footage more than a year after starting pre-orders. That said I’m still crazy pumped to see the product you guys deliver.

    Thanks for pushing the envelope
    Raphael

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Raphael!

      •Extra batteries will cost about $100, and you will be able to order more before we ship so that they come in the same box.
      •Thanks for the support Brian! Right now, we are focusing entirely on filling our pre-sale orders. Once the dust has settled there, we will start rolling out accessories. We hope to have them out early next year, but don’t have an estimated cost yet.
      •There are many factors involved in designing and making Snap. Some of them involve the camera, but other don’t. We fly Snap to test the UI, different designs of hardware, or the motor and flight controls. This makes us more and more familiar with Snap, but doesn’t alway focus on making crisp and clear video. Snap is getting better and better every day though. As it gets closer to the final product, we will post more and more video moving forward.

  • Gizmo2001

    Reply

    Hi James,
    I’ve sent you an email a couple of times & I was wondering if yiu have seen it?.
    Many Thanks

  • Ralph

    Reply

    Here’s a suggestion. How many Snap prototypes do you have now? 20 something? How about you loan one to a friendly video photographer and let them start experimenting with it. It’s a Win-Win. You will get some footage that your pre-order customers are dying to see (myself included) and I’m sure you’ll some good feedback, bug finds, and ideas that you will need to address eventually anyway.

  • Chad

    Reply

    I hear ya buddy. I purchased mine almost a year ago now. Oct. 12, 2015 to be exact. I was told it would be out in the spring so by the time you bought yours I thought I would have had mine already. But to be fair they are doing a lot of work to make this thing awesome. I have been patiently waiting for a year now. I know they didn’t want to send out a crappy product so I am glad they are working out all the bugs.

  • David

    Reply

    I placed order since last year and until this year just keep updating. I will wait until December.

  • Don

    Reply

    Uh oh,

    That new DJI Mavic is pretty hot. Will VR-S be able to compete with that? Especially at a price range that’s a few hundred dollars less than Snap.
    I hope you guys get in the game soon.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Don. We haven’t tested the Mavic out yet, but we have noticed a few key differences right off the bat.

      The most obvious is the safety features. Having protected props is no easy task, which is why few flying cameras have them. If you have ever tried doing an internet search on drone injuries, you will know its pretty nasty.

      Another key feature that is unique to Snap is its modularity. Better range, 360 degree obstacle avoidance vs front facing only, faster, better flight time, tracking beacon. If you want to specialize in any of these areas, Snap will allow this. And, if you do crash for some reason, being able to break apart on impact will help preserve Snap and save you lots of cash.

      Finally, being a smaller startup, we pride ourselves on customer service, which is something that other drone companies have been notoriously bad with. Try contacting some of these other, bigger companies, and see what type of interaction you get.

      We all totally understand the cost of missed experiences and empathize with the desire to get flying right away. While another month or two seems like an eternity right now, Mavic is also a few weeks out. And in 4 months, these next 45 days won’t seem as important.

  • Desmond wong

    Reply

    @Don agreed Mavic price of $749 is attractive, your portability edge is already taken, better double up your effort, time is catching up.

  • Don

    Reply

    Wow, haven’t seen it posted that cheap. I’ve seen 999.00. 749.00 is even better. I’m waiting to see what the real user reviews have to say about it. Of course, that won’t be until around Thanksgiving or later to get enough reviews.
    I do like the Snap platform. I had originally ordered one after seeing it at CES this year. After the delays I backed out.

  • Raphael

    Reply

    On paper the DJI Mavic has a compelling feature set:

    40 mph flight
    Forward facing obstacle avoidance
    27 minute flight time
    4mi (7km) range using a new communication system
    Included hardware remote with smartphone companion app (can be flown with only the smartphone and app)
    Vision positioning paired with GPS for indoor and outdoor flight
    Auto level adjustment (keeping a constant height from the ground while going uphill)

    As I said VERY compelling. Some of these capabilities can’t ignored as killer. Where I think the Snap has this design beat is the shrouded rotors and more importantly the modular design. This means the Snap can be upgraded (granted at a higher cost) to match or even surpass (hopefully) many (if not all?) of the Mavics best functions.

    My only hope is that once the main product delivery is out the door you good people at VR can really kick the accessory aspect of the Snap (arguably the most important design feature) into serious overdrive. If VR can deliver on their stated goal of delivering “WILDLY” high-speed flight, 1 hour flight time, obstacle avoidance and range extenders by early next year, I’ll feel my patience and (significant current/future) investment in the Snap platform will be well justified. However based on the only evidence we have, delays are a very possible outcome. As some other commenters have stated other firms are starting to wise up and offer products that while in my opinion don’t push the Snap into obsolescence, do start to make their offerings seem more attractive.

    Again, I believe in the long-term potential for Snap’s modular platform to be the real game changer for the industry.

    James, are you able to tell us if there are any initial prototypes for the accessories or designs at least? Or are they still in the “theoretical” stage. I really hope the former but I’m ready for an answer of the latter.

    In researching the Mavic I found many available video examples of the Mavic in action both externally and from the flight perspective. With their release date not too much before the Snap’s, I implore the awesome team at VR to please do the same and really begin to put out more video examples of the Snap in action. I will also say that the while the Mavic looks great on paper (and honestly in the videos they provided as well) we have yet to hear what people have to say in the real world. I’ll withhold judgment until we start to see real-world reviews.

    Keep it going VR team, PUSH hard for the finish and make our dreams (and yours) a reality!

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for another thoughtful comment and encouragement here Raphael. We have had a lot of discussion regarding several of the topics you have mentioned here.

      We do understand the importance of getting some more footage out soon. It is a hard balance because the more energy we spend on building prototypes for footage, the less time we have for focusing on production. However, we will make this a higher priority.

      We have developed early designs and prototype for all of our accessories, and have had a lot of success with them. Snap will come with a few design features that are exclusive to these accessories.

  • Raphael

    Reply

    That link doesn’t work, dead page.

  • Ryan

    Reply

    Some strange confusion about Mavic’s price point at the moment. Currently, DJI’s website is only listing the $1000 package, which includes both the drone and the controller, allowing 4.3 mile range. However, a few articles (such as Wired) have reported you can buy the Mavic without the controller at a $749 price point, and instead just fly via wifi from a smartphone. I haven’t been able to find anything official from DJI that confirms this, but I’m assuming with the credibility of sources it will be possible.

  • Scott

    Reply

    Thank you for the update. I feel your pain and frustration but I also appreciate the updates. I know first hand how hard it is to get a new product off the ground and the ‘bumps’ in the road. All you can do is keep moving forward and being honest with your customers. Of course I would like to hear that it is shipping tomorrow but I also want to have the best version possible and I know that can’t happen without your commitment to quality.

    I will wait until the end of the process and I hope to say one day that I was one of the first to have one. I wish you best of luck. I can’t wait to see the final product.

  • Gregory Wee

    Reply

    I asked about the cost of extra batteries in Jan 2016 and received a reply that it would be about $60.. Now, you say extra batteries will be about $100?

    With what the DJI Mavic can do now for $749, and most importantly, actually starts shipping on October 15, I’m not waiting for the Snap anymore. Snap’s biggest advantage is the shrouded blades but for my use, it’s a nice-to-have feature, not absolutely essential. Mavic also comes standard with obstacle avoidance, and object/people tracking, and the DJI app seems to be quite well developed.

    This is a convincing unpaid 3rd party review of the Mavic by the infamous drone destroyer CaseyNeistat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iPG1Xa5Uqwo What’s most compelling about this review is how, even with it’s small size, the Mavic seems to be extremely stable and able to handle high winds as Casey actually “lands” the Mavic by plucking it out of the air.

    BTW, I’ve emailed contact@vantagerobotics.com yesterday for a refund but have not heard back. How long will it take to process my refund?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Our initial cost estimates for the batteries we more optimistic. But after sourcing with vendors for exactly what we wanted, we adjusted the price. All pre-sale orders, however, will be getting a second battery for free.

      The Mavic looks like a great product, but costs $1000, not $749. We are also still waiting to see some good reviews regarding its computer vision tracking. Check out the rest of the comments to see some other differences we have noted between the Mavic and Snap.

      We will respond to all emails within 3 business days, but its usually much faster.

  • Carmelo

    Reply

    At any given instance I hope you guys can refund my money if I cannot wait any longer. I found a flying camera all ready to take off with more features on it, at the same price range as yours.

  • Chris

    Reply

    G,Day James
    Can you release some more information about your control and tracking methods? Alot of the information I can find is quite old and I am sure has improved or changed since then.
    I myself am torn between Snap and Mavic but DJI’s waypoint system apparently is left wanting and you guys have the wire function which would help self film incredible scenes.
    I believe a new video release showing your tracking and flight control in detail will help bolster confidence and sales in your product.
    Also can you confirm that Snaps hover accuracy is +- 1.5m? Does that mean it will mull around in a 3 meter area when hovering and tracking?

    PS – I watched all of Mavics you tube videos and the 4k video quality is woefully soft and blurry. My Parrot Bebop 1 films just as good

    Regards,
    Chris

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the suggestions Chris. We just beefed up the software for some of our automated flights, and will make sure to post soon.

      When thinking about the position hold, GPS is accurate within a 1 meter cube. If Snap holds its position within that virtual cube, it is with the parameters that GPS allows for. It is usually much more accurate than that though.

      We haven’t tested the Mavic out yet, but we have noticed a few key differences right off the bat.

      The most obvious is the safety features. Having protected props is no easy task, which is why few flying cameras have them. If you have ever tried doing an internet search on drone injuries, you will know its pretty nasty.

      Another key feature that is unique to Snap is its modularity. Better range, 360 degree obstacle avoidance vs front facing only, faster, better flight time, tracking beacon. If you want to specialize in any of these areas, Snap will allow this. And, if you do crash for some reason, being able to break apart on impact will help preserve Snap and save you lots of cash.

      Finally, being a smaller startup, we pride ourselves on customer service, which is something that other drone companies have been notoriously bad with. Try contacting some of these other, bigger companies, and see what type of interaction you get.

      We all totally understand the cost of missed experiences and empathize with the desire to get flying right away. While another month or two seems like an eternity right now, Mavic is also a few weeks out. And in 4 months, these next 45 days won’t seem as important.

  • Terence

    Reply

    Would u pls let me know how I can get my money back? I have lost all my patience and am tired with your delay notice.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    James – Mavic is $799, without the remote. You know, like the Snap. No remote. Except you guys are $1300 (forget pre-order pricing, that won’t go on forever and at some point you have to compete on the open market, so your pricing IS your pricing).

    But then you add a remote, and its $999, and that remote is super mega nice and sports a 7km range.

    And its not vaporware. Which is kinda a big deal.

    You guys are a nice demo of what might be until you ship.

    I think you guys need to stop nit picking on DJI and focus on shipping product. DJI has more resources, more tech, more channel, more money, heck more of everything! And they should – as they’re a mature company. You guys are new. No way you can compete head to head.

    So stop trying to.

    Carve out a niche and own it. Trying to compete against DJI, etc. on mass market – that ship has sailed.

    Find your niche, own it and dominate it.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment Paul. We still haven’t been able to find the Mavic being sold without the remote for $799. Where do you see that?

  • Chris

    Reply

    Thanks for the quick reply James,

    It is good to hear about the 1m cube, I can live with that accuracy. The Parrot Bebop I currently film my climbing with is about 5m and I did an awesome route last weekend and missed all of it due to the thing drifting around. Speaking of safety, the new Parrot update removed the emergency shutdown button so my normal landing method of pressing that and dropping it into a bush or long grass failed. This resulted in an attempt by my climbing partner to grab it out the air, but without that button we couldn’t shutdown. When he let go the drone flew back at him crashing into his chest just below the throat, he was wearing a shirt so did not get cut but it definitely highlights the safety issue.

    An example of DJI customer service for all who are reading, the following is an email conversation I had with them:
    Gday,
    I am looking to buy the Mavic flymore but am confused about the price. Your press release says $1300US which equals roughly $1700AUD yet the price on your website is vastly higher ($2350AUD). Is this a mistake?
    Regards
    Dear Chris ,
    Thank you for contacting DJI online store .
    It is not a mistake .Please be noted that the prices for different countries are not the same .Due to the potential tax fee .shipping fee and marketing capacity are different .
    Sorry for the inconveniences caused .
    If there is something else we can help you with , please feel free to let me know .
    Wish you a nice day
    G’day Lily,
    Thank you for the reply.
    Can you please clarify which tax? When a product is purchased from overseas it is upto to consumer to pay import taxs such as GST and shipping is negligible. I ask as there is a lot of confusion about why some companies choose to greatly raise their prices for us. We call it the Australia tax.
    Any help you could provide would be appreciated.
    Regards

    The did not answer me after that, for those that don’t know; DJI is charging Aussies an extra $500AUD because we are Australian and they can.

    James, In the long search for information about your 1hour flight prop set I found this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rPsPFq8c5Ws at 5min 31sec there is 2 pictures in the background. Are these actual prototypes of your modules or CG designs?
    The extra flight time mod is a huge selling point for me for when I go on 1 or 2 week adventures into the mountains, can you please provide us with some details such as:
    Max theoretical altitude
    Pack down size
    Max wind speed
    Estimated price range

    Lastly, does snap work with Samsung Galaxy S7. Both Parrot and DJI currently do not, when attempting to fly the phone randomly restarts leaving the user with zero control.

    Thanks,
    Chris

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful response here Chris, and good eyes from the CES video. We are currently focusing entirely on filling pre-sale orders, and have not unveiled all the information that you are looking for to the public yet. However, we have designed Snap to work with these future accessories, and have made some early renderings and prototypes to confirm our designs. Seeing as you have done your homework, the pic on the left is an early prototype of our flight endurance accessory, and the pic on the left is an rendering of an obstacle avoidance accessory. Both will undoubtedly look different by the time they are ready to ship though.

      Snap will work with Android phones.

  • Alan

    Reply

    They mention that in the official launch video.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    They’re probably not pushing the $749 option since most people would do better with the remote included. And as I said, I bet greater than 90% get it with the remote.

    I was waiting to see what DJI and GoPro came out with to determine who would get my money; Snap, DJI or GoPro. Been following Snap since it was announced, and was bullish on the advanced features and ease of transport. It needs a controller, but I thought I could wait for that given how advanced the design and features were when announced.

    But time passed, and now DJI and GoPro are in the game.

    GoPro did pretty well for their first drone, and their mindset as a camera accessory shines through with their design and market position. A few misses, but hey, its their first debut. They had some slight delays, but they finally announced, and are shipping quickly.

    But thats all out the window with the Mavic. DJI combined their advanced feature set from the Phantom 4 into a small, foldable package that is robust and very mature. It is a first gen product from the best and most reputable company in the business, and nobody doubts their ability to produce, sell and support the Mavic. Features to price ratio – its the best out there. Hands down. And it ships in like 2-3 weeks. And it is going to ship in numbers never seen before in the drone industry. They just sucked all the air out of the room with the Mavic.

    And back to Snap. Love the design. Love the proposed modularity and future features and accessories, but alas, its still vaporware. As I said before, you can’t compete with DJI head on, and even GoPro is going to be rough. So don’t. Carve out a niche and own it. Safety is nice, but DJI seems to have solved the safety problem by making their product 1) avoid obstacles and 2) auto-take off and land so no need to go near those spinning blades. Did you see Casey’s video flying it for the first time in wind? That optical stabilization kept the Mavic as still as if it were on the ground. I think DJI might have done an end-around on the safety offered by Snap’s shrouded props with their tech.

    You can talk about all that Snap will do, but nobody cares unless you ship. Until then, its all claims backed up by nothing. I still believe there’s a niche market for the Snap, but unless it ships, there’s no market, regardless of how great we all think it could be.

    So in the end, DJI is going to get my money. But I’m still keeping an eye on Snap. The opportunity still exists, but every day it doesn’t ship, that window shrinks and shrinks.

    Don’t let that window close. That would be a waste of the tremendous effort that went into Snap and the fantastic team that is behind it.

  • Alan

    Reply

    Sorry but no, you can say that nobody doubts DJI’s ability to support the Mavic – DJI is known for 2 things, great performance from their products, when they are working OK, and absolutely terrible customer service.

    Right now I’m suffering from the fact I can no longer fly my Phantom, as the DJI Go app crashes my brand new Samsung S7 phone. DJI doesn’t care and just shrugs it off as Samsung’s problem, ignoring that I’m also a DJI customer, so it’s their problem too.

    “The most popular phone from the world’s largest maker of phones on the world’s largest operating system, tends to reboot mid-flight when running our app? Meh, not our problem”….

  • Raphael

    Reply

    The latest video posted on FB about the twist shutdown feature is cute but with 4 to 6 weeks before you begin beta testing it’s really becoming an issue for me that you are not releasing more video of the Snap in action. I understand you want to focus on final design but with the VERY feature rich DJI Mavic almost here and several available examples of it’s performance in the wild, it’s getting harder and harder everyday not to wonder if waiting for the Snap is worth it. Right out of the box the Mavic (now that we see the first few videos with soft/blurry images were just not focused correctly) has most of what I want/need. With the Mavic I will not have to wait again (once we actually get Snap) for upgrades to arrive to achieve the actual performance I want/need. Mavic looks like a very capable device in a really nice size footprint and WE CAN SEE SEVERAL EXAMPLE VIDEOS OF THE DEVICE IN ACTION.
    Will VR be releasing videos giving us time to review performance before our pre-orders are filled? It is very important to know what I’ll REALLY be getting before I purchase. PLEASE, take the time to produce more videos. This is an important moment for you and the people like me who are trying to hang in there waiting for the Snap without tangible proof of its performance. We are in a really tough spot now that other players have arrived with solid offerings. If at this point you don’t have Snap demo units that are 80% to 90% ready to go and can demonstrate your product’s functionality, I’d really begin to doubt your launch timeline. If that is the case be honest with the people who have already paid for your product. As demonstrated by the desire for your product, we live in a video world now. That’s what your product IS ALL ABOUT. Please just give us a few minutes of the drone in action (not just going up or down slowly, REAL ACTION including the tracking functions please) so we can rest easy knowing my faith in VR is justified. Thank you.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hi Rapheal – We just hired a shooter/editor and he is out with Snap as we speak. This is an exciting step for us. Please remember that we are a startup and DJI and GoPro are multi-billion dollar companies. We are being frugal with how we deploy our resources, but are right at the point where we can begin pushing more content out to the community.

      Mavic is a nice product, but it only checks three of the five major boxes that Snap offers. Mavic offers Portability, Image Quality and Ease of Use. Snap offers Portability, Image Quality, Ease of Use, Safety, and Extensibility.

      Please look back through our library of videos on Facebook and YouTube. More to come. – VR

  • Georgie Reeves

    Reply

    I’m feeling quite frustrated at the ambiguity in delivery time, I feel I have committed a large sum of savings to a product that is constantly unable to launch. The reason I chose Snap over DJI Phantom 3 or 4 is because of the follow me option, but I am now getting nervous at the reliability of the product and I need a delivery by November 26th. I do agree that a good product is worth waiting for but I feel nervous at your lack of client contact. Especially considering DJI, Parrot and GoPro have a huge social media presence and are constantly updating clientele with videos, images and information. A community your severely lacking on. I was also unaware until today that the current version of snap isn’t equipped with obstacle avoidance, any idea when this update will be ready and what it will cost? Also do you feel the Snap drone is suitable to use whilst skiing? (Altitude, Wind speed, and moisture). Please keep updating costumers with information, even if it’s just frequent instagram updates.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hi Georgie,

      Sorry to frustrate you here. We are not trying to leave you hanging with purposefully ambiguous time tables. We gave concrete dates before, but we delayed due to circumstances that were out of our control. Giving firm dates without being 100% confident that we can meet them is the worst. We have good estimates. But, until we have every detail finished and in our hands, we can’t give a 100% confirmed time table.

      Please remember that we are a startup. DJI, Parrot, and GoPro are HUGE companies. We are being frugal with how we deploy our resources, but are right at the point where we can begin pushing more content out to the community.

      Snap will come with ground avoidance tech (obstacle avoidance for things below Snap) when shipped. Right now, we are focusing entirely on getting Snap in your hands. After that, we will shift gears and work on getting the 360 degree avoidance accessory out. We don’t have a price for that yet.

      The biggest issue with tracking a subject while changing altitude is that many phones don’t have altimeters. If your phone cannot tell Snap its altitude, the free follow tracking will stay at the same height. You could, however, direct a virtual wire to point down a hill with any phone. Other than that, Snap will work great in the mountains.

  • Ned

    Reply

    The best things come to those who wait, I have confidence in Vantage to deliver. As a professional software engineer I know how schedules slip and have set my expectations accordingly. Just don’t announce 2.0 features before you ship a 1.0 and I will be happy when I get my Snap for Christmas! I have a choclalate lab puppy, Duke, I can’t wait to get the video of him and I out on the trails of Wilder. I will have no fear of spinning blades and potential injury to myself or my new pal as we learn to ride together. Keep up the good work and I will keep the faith. (-;

  • Joseph Sarigianopoulos

    Reply

    Ok. This really is getting a bit frustrating. Now I realize this isn’t Vantage’s total fault, but making promises and raising expectations again and again is really adding to the disappointment I’m reading in a lot more comments than ever before. You guys should consider more than an extra battery for those of us sticking it out. Especially when I can use the money on a Mavic! The enclosed propellers aren’t THAT much of a game changer guys. According to the FAA regs, there shouldn’t be a need for them either that basic propeller guards couldn’t handle. Still holding in there, but I’m on board with the same December 31st deadline. I ordered when mid-July was the promised delivery date. A half year buffer is quite a bit. This also speaks volumes of what I can expect from any service or support I may need in the future as well. All of these missed marks, regardless of direction of blame, are a major reflection on your business as a whole. 2 more months and I will need my money back to go the Mavic route. Sorry guys.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment here Joseph, and sorry for the frustrations. We are doing everything we can to get you flying really soon, and fully understand the stakes. Thanks for sticking with us through 2016.

  • Tim

    Reply

    Jim…I don’t need a response, for the most part you just repeat yourself.

    Snap stop with the excuses. The only thing that most of us consumers care about is getting the product we paid for in the time frame that was promised. As you can tell your continued delays/excuses are causing the masses to start growing impatient. Although most will agree that on the surface, your drone has a lot of positive over the competition but how do we really know that until its out in the real market in real life situations. What I found funny is the survey you emailed out. Yes always good to get feedback on your product; its good business. But giving feedback on a product thats not even out in the market, not sure thats good business. Not sure about others, but it caused me to just get a little more frustrated. Worry about your product getting to market and then send the survey after a few months of shipping the product. Stop with the excuses and get your product out on the market in the time frame you projected with no further delays; thats how you win over costumers over your competition. If you also want to win over the costumers with these delays, give them back the interest on the hard earned money that they paid for your product; it may not be much but every little bit counts for the consumers. It would be the fair and the best thing you could do at this time. You could possibly have a product go to market with the most negative feeling from your first supporters. Think about it Tobin and Joe, how would you feel if you were on our end. Do that every once in a while. Put yourself in our position and see how you would feel; then maybe it might sink home. It appears you have a lot of people wanting to support your product but if you lose them what good is your business. We the consumers deserve better. I truly do wish you and your team the best of luck in no further delays. It seems like its going to be a great product but let us consumers decide who have put our trust and faith in you. God Bless Tim

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Tim,

      No one likes delays, especially us. We have invested a huge amount to time, energy, and money into this project, and fully understand and empathize with the frustration this is causing our customers. We are constantly considering how our customers feel. People want to know what is going on and why there are these delays. In the spirit of transparency, we have sent out updates explaining what is going on. This is not meant to excuse the delays, but to include our customers in our project as it unrolls. We sent the survey to further include our supporters in this project. We want to fully understand what our customers plan to do with Snap so that we can ensure that they get the product they paid for. There will be more surveys and outlets for feedback after we ship as well. Thanks again for the well wishes, and please let us know if you have any other thoughts on the matter.

      -VR

  • Scott

    Reply

    I am happy to wait for a well thought out and working product, although I would like to have it now. I forgot to ask a question when I got the survey. Have you given any thought to somehow having a separate microphone that could record sound from an area away from the drone and controller? My son is getting married in June and I was thinking it might be nice to record the ceremony from the Snap and get the sound recorded from a separate microphone. I thought I read in one of the blogs that the microphone was removed or disabled on the Snap but I am not sure that sound recording was eliminated completly. Just a thought

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Scott. We actually have thought about the audio a bunch. No one wants to hear those loud motors, so Snap will not have a microphone on it. Instead, Snap will use the microphone on your phone, and sync that audio with the video from the air. This is an older video, but is an example of what we are talking about here. Have a look:

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Is the “follow me” option even exist? I do not think you have ever showed it. What does the remote look like?

    All this talk of additional features when the drone itself isn’t shipping is crazy. Its like selling vaporware with additional vaporware.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hi Paul. Sorry to frustrate you here. ‘Selling vaporware’ is exactly what a pre-sale is. We have designed Snap to be extensible in the future, and have made early prototypes to confirm that Snap will work with these accessories. They will all be out soon. Snap will use your phone as a controller. We have several tracking videos out already, but will make sure to post more soon.

  • Raphael

    Reply

    Hi James, can you tell us when you’ll start releasing the commisioned footage you mentioned a few days ago?

  • Tibor Beczo

    Reply

    Scott,
    If I remember correctly, the Snap itself will not have a microphone, however, the phone you are using to control the snap will be the source for sound. So, the wedding video would simply need the phone to be near the “action” while the Snap stays where you set it.

    V/r

    Tibor

  • Tibor Beczo

    Reply

    Paul,
    If I remember correctly, Snap does not ship with a “remote.” The primary means of control will be through your smart phone (IOS or Android).

    Snap WILL have a DSM receiver built into though, allowing people to use a DSM radio control if they desire to. This information is easily accessible in the product details section of this website, I suggest that you review that information in case I’ve misspoken about a detail or two.

    V/r

    Tibor

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    I was not being clear in my question. On the VR web, it states “waterproof tracking beacon” – is this part of the “follow me” thing? This appears to be an addition piece of hardware, not an iPhone app?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Ahh. Sorry for the confusion. Your phone will be Snap’s controller, and the free follow tracking function (along with all the other tracking features) will track that. This will work great if you want to track yourself in any activity. However, sometimes the pilot does not want to be the subject of the tracking (think about wanting to sit on a beach while your friend is surfing). For scenarios like this, you will want a small, waterproof tracking beacon to use in concert with the controller. We will be developing and selling this accessory early next year.

  • Chris

    Reply

    On the sibject of tracking, does Snap just use the phones gps for tracking or does it have a visual system aswell?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Currently, Snap only uses GPS. We are still building out the software (will be a firmware update) that will allow Snap to work in tandem with computer vision tracking.

  • Paul

    Reply

    Wait a minute. In you “Let’s talk autonomus flight” message you talked about all of the visual tracking systems. I am 100% expecting all of those features to work seamlessly together. “Currently, Snap only uses GPS. We are still building out the software (will be a firmware update) that will allow Snap to work in tandem with computer vision tracking.” This statment makes me think that you will be giving us a product that does not have these features programmed in. What is the truth?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      This is a fairly common procedure. Software tends to get completed last, both because it often depends on hardware which needs to be completed first, and because there tends to be lead times for hardware fabrication and assembly that leave bandwidth for more intense software development at the end. The computer vision software will improve the tracking, but isn’t essential to get a good shot. Right now, the tracking features use GPS only, which works great. We are confident with our tracking current tracking technology enough to start getting Snap into the hands of our customers. And, as we start shipping, our software team will continue to develop the computer vision tech, and will release it as a software update soon after.

  • Paul

    Reply

    Roger that. Are we talking about weeks, months or years?

    I am envisioning someone trying to sell me, let’s say, a computer at an inflated price under the guise of “Oh It is worth the extra money, because eventually we will make software that improves its performance.”

    It is my understanding that Vantage Robotics is doing this in order to quell the hottest fire: the consumer. That is acceptable.

    Not delivering on advertised features is fraudulent. Given that pre-order sales are entirely on a basis of trust, fraud is unacceptable.

    My questions:
    1) What will the time frame be – after consumers have their drone – for the drone to have 100% of its advertised features (specifical the ones advertised in your blog post “Let’s Talk Autonomous Flight”)?
    2) Will consumers have to purchase any software updates?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hi Paul,

      Fraudulent is a bit extreme here. This is a pre-sale product, which does not come with an inflated price but with some significant discounts and extra accessories. Apple, a computer company, is actually a great example of a company that constantly sends out software updates to improve on their operating system after releasing a new product. Also, please remember that we are offering a pretty generous return policy if you get a Snap and are unsatisfied.

      But to answer your questions;
      •We don’t have an exact time frame for each software update. Like most new products, there will probably be many updates in the initial weeks, and fewer as time goes on. We hope to have all of the lowest hanging fruit in the coming months. However, when the computer vision tracking feature comes in relation to when your Snap arrives in the mail is too difficult to say.
      •We will not be charging for any of the software updates that involve features already advertised.

      Please let us know if you have any other questions or concerns.

      -VR

  • Ryan

    Reply

    Does this mean Snap will currently be unable to track when operating in areas where a smartphone cannot maintain a GPS connection (ie. remote countries, high mountains, etc.)

    • James Squires

      Reply

      If you are out doors and not in a deep canyon, you should be able to get a solid GPS signal anywhere in the world. You don’t need cell service to get GPS.

  • Ralph

    Reply

    No, cell phone maintain GPS positions even when out of cell range. (In fact, you don’t even a cell carrier). The just need reasonably clear view of the sky. I use an IPad GPS for navigation on a boat and it only has wifi on it.

  • JosefHerbert Kern

    Reply

    With which remote control (Futaba) is the Snap compatible?
    2.4 GHz or what frequency can be flown.
    Which range is achieved with manual control.
    Which range is achieved with manual control.

  • JosefHerbert Kern

    Reply

    Also, it would be informative if movies put into the net which also show failures, so would be all helped us.

  • JosefHerbert Kern

    Reply

    Where can I find the APP. Can the app already be downloaded.
    You must publish something (like DJI Mavic) to make it more credible.
    I am also already at the brooding whether at all a commodity comes.

  • Ed

    Reply

    “But to answer your questions;
    •We don’t have an exact time frame for each software update. Like most new products, there will probably be many updates in the initial weeks, and fewer as time goes on. We hope to have all of the lowest hanging fruit in the coming months. However, when the computer vision tracking feature comes in relation to when your Snap arrives in the mail is too difficult to say.
    •We will not be charging for any of the software updates that involve features already advertised.

    Please let us know if you have any other questions or concerns.

    -VR”

    I agree, this could be fraud.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Ed,

      We are telling you everything we know and are trying to be as transparent as possible. There is no deception here. You can cancel your order for a full refund at any time. In fact, the very sentence before your quoted excerpt said that you can return Snap if you are unhappy. Again, this is a startup. We understand that delays are frustrating to everyone and are very thankful for everyones patience. If you have any other questions, please feel free to ask.

  • Chuck

    Reply

    welp im continuing to suppress the ever-ongoing feeling to preorder a Mavic because i believe Snap will be ahead in lots of ways, safety and extensibility very impt to be shure…i may have to stop reading this blog tho…seems to depress me more than giving me hope that this ‘Super Extraordinary Machine’ will eventually wind up in my anxiously awaiting hands….tap, tap, tap, well, u know . . .

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry for the stress Chuck. Its very understanding why you can get depressed thinking about these delays. Please know that things are coming along very nicely. Having Snap in your hands this fall seems very reasonable over here still. Please let us know if you have any other questions.

  • Tim

    Reply

    When are beta’s shipping? Although I will not be receiving one, I’m just trying to see where you’re at on the time frame.

    Look forward to your response.

    Tim

  • Alan

    Reply

    Finishing every answer by “please let us know if you have any other questions” is actually stress-inducing itself. It’s a classic customer service brush off that irritates the heck out of people. This is a blog, not a help desk for posting canned macros. It’s great that you have this blog and answer the questions of your customers though 🙂

  • Gary

    Reply

    HI James
    Looks like you have people jumping Ship like rats leaving a sinking ship.
    I am Not giving up on you yet.
    I was an Alaskan Bush pilot most of my Life. I have had Engine Problems And had to Land places other than airports, I stuck with the Plane and made the best of what I had to work with and I always Walked away unhurt.
    When I got done Flying for a living. I got a Sailboat and went to the South Pacific for 4 years. Murphy Rode along with me on the boat too. Again I made the best of it. and did not Abandon Ship. You Don’t leave the boat until you have to Climb up into the life raft.

    I too have been waiting 8.5 months But I am not yet to the point that my feet are getting wet. I believe you have a good Damage control crew and will keep the VR ship afloat. But it maybe a slow ride.

    I hope to have my Snap in hand before Xmas. In the mean time I did order a Mavic Pro a few days ago and should have it by Thanksgiving. Much of my shooting will not be close to people. But when I do need to shoot close to people I will want to use snap. I plan to find a way to make both of them to pay for themselves over time just like I have with $10,000 worth of Canon Cameras and expensive lens. I used to do Aerial photography from airplanes. I am sure I’ll figure out a way to make these pay even if it takes awhile. I hope the Mavic DSM Control will work with snap for longer range than my phone. but not counting on it.
    Can you have you new guy Do a Video of some Auto flights Like going out a mile to a waypoint doing and orbit and return home.
    You need to loan a beta to some of the independent Drone reviewers. To get opinions from someone that does not work for you.
    I am still with you for a few more months anyway.
    Gary

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful response and the support Gary! We are planning on having you fly by xmas too, and will make sure to get more footage out soon. We have also been talking with some third party reviewers.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Its been 4 weeks since this blog post where you said, “Our expectation is that we can begin sending Voluntary Beta units to our first pre-order customers on a rolling basis starting in 4-6 weeks.”

    Is there an update to the timeline? On your on track? Or do you need to release a new blog post with new timelines?

    Rumor is that your beta units delivery schedule has slipped well into 2017. With no updates on manufacturing, this looks to be true. Seems that if there was movement on manufacturing, that would be shared. Given all the folks who are bailing on their pre-orders, I bet a lot of people are wondering if Snap will ever ship. You guys keep talking about “future products or mods”, when you haven’t even delivered on the initial product yet. What is up?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Paul,

      Rumors about beta units pushing back ‘well into 2017’ are exactly that. Where are you hearing these rumors? We are moving along very well and plan on getting betas in the next few weeks. Blog posts require time and energy, and we are investing most of that into development right now. If we have big news, we will share it right away. When we talk about future accessories, we are talking about Snap’s unique design that allows for extensibility. This is a powerful feature to our product, even if those accessories do not yet exist.

  • Kevin Wickens

    Reply

    Why I’m still waiting for Snap and why I still consider the Snap to be the best aerial photography / videography platform in a post “Mavic, Karma, Hover” drone world.

    Hover: Let’s tackle Hover first since it’s the easiest. Preliminary reviews have shown that the camera quality is terrible. It has tones of other major limitations but without the camera being up to par, who cares. Next:

    Karma: First off size. Karma is too big and too heavy but even more important than size is the lack of smart autonomous flight modes on the karma. I would never feel comfortable launching the Karma from a Canoe with my kids or dog in the canoe and even if my kids / dog were not in the canoe, I’d never ever feel comfortable trying to land it in the canoe, nor would I feel comfortable trying to grab it out of the air. 2nd and even more important the Karma fails at autonomous flight modes. 1) Dronie: Same as Snap’s out and back. 2) Cable cam. No where near as good as Snap’s as the camera does not stay focused on the subject automatically. i.e. you will never stay in frame during a cable cam shot with Karma however you will stay in frame with a cable cam shot from snap (on paper at least). 3) Orbit: I can’t seem to find any information on exactly how the Orbit works with Karma. No mention of an Orbit POI, just orbit self but no mention of what “self” means. I’m presuming it’s not the controller as the controller does not seem to have it’s own GPS module in it. So it must be a programmed orbit POI but this is still unknown. Nevertheless we know that Snap can Orbit POI and orbit the controller even if the controller is in motion. Furthermore Snap will be able to orbit the future waterproof beacon even when it is in motion. 4) Reveal: This is pretty cool of an idea. A pre-programmed camera motion during a standard cable cam. This is a plus for the Karma as Snap does not have this automatically programmed as an autonomous camera motion. This is a good point to make to VR staff. 360 degree, fully programmable autonomous camera motion that could be applied to one if not all of Snap’s autonomous flight paths. Last but not least the REAL nail in the coffin for the KARMA is absolutely NO FOLLOW MODE what so ever. Be it either a follow mode on the drone itself or a track subject mode for the camera. This means that you will only ever be IN FRAME when you stand still and use Orbit or Dronie. All other modes and if you are moving, you will fall out of frame as the camera has no way what so ever of tracking your precise location. BLECH!!!!! I’m sure there are other reasons pro and against the Karma but these are the deal breakers for anyone looking to get awesome aerial photos or videos.

    Mavic: Obviously this is the big one and the biggest competitor to Snap. I love the Mavic. The Mavic is nothing short of awesome 7 km range is insane, the video picture is spectacular but at the end of the day it comes down to this one and only thing: Which platform can you get the best aerial shots of yourself or your loved ones with? The Mavic or the Snap. I still believe the Snap comes out way on top and here is why:

    1) The most obvious is the safety. Mavic is insanely stable but people aren’t. I’m not worried about my own skills in flying the Mavic. I’m worried about the less drone educated people around me who aren’t paying attention to their surroundings. Sure this hazard should only happen during take-off and landing but again as mentioned earlier, I’d be really really uncomfortable launching and landing Mavic from a canoe and or many other situations. Which means…. I WOULDN’T risk it…. which means I’d never ever get that epic super Dronnie from the middle of a lake in my canoe with my dog and kids. Also…. as a side note. If you haven’t seen the video where some dude purposely flies mavic into a tree…. I suggest you check it out. There are some very very narrow canyons in Utah and Arizona and I would imagine that getting an epic dronnie where the drone flies out of the canyon would make for one insanely amazing shot…. however these canyons are so narrow that it would take a pro flyer to fly out of them without hitting the walls…. with snap…. no problem…. with the Mavic…. potential disaster. The same could be said in any TIGHT situation…. with Mavic…. you probably wouldn’t risk it. With snap, you wouldn’t even hesitate knowing that you and the drone are both going to be safe should you “bump” into something by accident.

    2) Take off and landing in uneven terrain and or a boat and or insert weird take-off landing situation here _______ . This point has been raised by many drone operators on the various forums, many of which have stated that they will continue to use their P3 or P4 for the simple reason of being able to grab the landing gear to launch and or land it. I myself have done this many many times when the terrain has not been conducive to landing the drone. In fact most places where you are hiking and or adventure travelling are not conducive to landing / launching a drone from the ground.

    3) Here’s the BIG ONE! #1 most important thing for me (maybe not you and that’s fine) is being in the frame of the video and or photo while I’m biking, hiking, skating, jumping off a cliff into a lake, whatever. I watched dozens of video’s shot with Mavic ever since the pre-production demo units were sent out to all the you-tube vlogers and drone testers and so far from what I can see is that the ACTIVE TRACK used by Mavic (and P4) do a terrible job at keeping you fully in frame. I’m not too interested in spending $1000 and a full day of planning only to get pictures of my rear mountain bike tire and my ankles….. this along with #1 and #2 are the real deal breakers for me and why I think that Vantage Robotic’s Snap with it’s fancy predictive tracking algorithms will exceed over the industry leader’s Mavic when it comes to “Selfie Filming”.

  • Nick

    Reply

    Its almost a month since this post was made,WOULD VERY MUCH APPRECIATE AN UPDATE ON EVERYTHING!!! and Im literally praying for some better news on shipping! that in light of (im sorry for bringing it up after everyone does) the new drones on the market eg Mavid and Karma.

    can´t wait.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry Nick. We are spending a tremendous amount of energy on getting these units out the door, which cuts into our ticket spent on writing updates. We will try to get something out again soon.

  • Alan

    Reply

    Well they may be on the market but have any actually shipped yet?

    No.

    So many threads on the DJI forum about the Mavic not being shipped yet that the mods created one special thread just for that subject.

    People who paid more than a month ago were expecting shipping on the 15th. That hasn’t happened, in fact none have been shipped, at all. Same with the Gopro Karma – none have been shipped and the official shipping date is now… what? Nobody seems to know. It could be months.

    Delays happen with a new product, even for big, well-established companies with all the experts and computer estimates and everything. DJI is getting a huge amount of backlash now, for stating a date that they have already missed.

    In the meantime at least one test unit has shown a serious error – when flown below the original take off altitude a Mavic then ignored the pilot’s control inputs and decided to descend to ‘visual positioning’ height of a few feet – after warning of exceeding the ‘max’ altitude. Bizarre behavior but that’s what you can expect from a rushed product.

  • Alan

    Reply

    Special Notice
    We have been advised that the long anticipated GoPro Karma will not be available globally until 2017 🙁
    GoPro have advised, that demand for the product has exceeded expectations and production.
    GoPro will have an official statement coming shortly.In the mean time please register your interest by clicking the “Notify me when in Stock” link above.
    We will let you know more when we do.”

    https://www.videoguys.com.au/Shop/p/37881/gopro-karma-light-quadcopter-hero5-black-harness-included-gpqkwxx-005-eu.html

    Does that make y’all feel better?

    🙂

  • Altan

    Reply

    Thats only in Aus… People on the DJI forum are saying that its still shipping ontime in the US. But I must say that the snap group must really appreciate us preordrs being patient. DJI people are ready to storm DJI head quarters and execute all the admins after a few days of delay. But then again DJI world wide set a ship date.

  • Raphael

    Reply

    For me (and the reason why I requested a refund) the biggest issue with waiting for the Snap is that while the Mavic and the Karma have both been delayed, there is a lot of (CURRENT) available footage demonstrating their performance.

    The Snap sounds great but there isn’t enough supporting evidence to prove that. On October 5th we were told there was someone out shooting footage that day, but 2 weeks later still nothing. If I was VR and I had what they say they have, I’d be ON FIRE to show example after example of that. Instead we’re told “soon!”. I don’t know VR, I’m sure they are very nice, hard working people but it’s hard to take their word for it.

    While I can’t buy the Mavic pro today I can go online and SEE many things about it that make me very excited. That makes waiting for one a lot easier.

    I hope the Snap is all it’s said to be. Once we can see more about it and they have some of the much desired and super important add on modules available, I’ll be back on board. I’m betting that’s in about year, but hoping for 6 months. Good luck guys. I’ll keep watching and hoping for your success.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the thoughtful comment Raphael. Please remember that DJI and GoPro are multi billion dollar companies with huge marketing teams, and we are a startup. We have hired someone to shoot video and generate more footage, but that takes time. And the majority of our bandwidth is focused on getting the best product out there and in your hands. It sounds like both of these companies are also hit with delays (Karma was already delayed a year or so before they announced). We do understand the need for more footage, and thank you all for your patience here.

  • chuck peck

    Reply

    i’d sure feel better with some current footage, what happened to putting up more vids for us?
    I know there’s some you guys are sitting on…how bout puttin it up for us?…please?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry to lag here Chuck. We have hired a professional videographer to generate content and start publishing videos. It does take some time for him to get out there and get the footage, then edit and publish the video. We plan on pumping out more and more footage as things fall into place.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Its cute. Its overpriced, but it is shipping. And they’re letting others play with it, review it and try to break it. Its not a Snap, Karma or a Mavic, but Casey is having a blast with it. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PzDLVx-5HSM

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hover looks like a fun product, and they are shipping. But just to clarify, there are some significant differences between Hover and Snap. Some of the biggest being the 1-axis gimbal, lack of GPS, and only an 8 minute flight time before recharging the Hover. It looks like a nice product, but Casey also mentioned that this is really only designed for a casual or amateur user looking for a selfie, but not much more. It lacks a huge number of features that we have built into Snap.

  • Alan

    Reply

    Max height of 4 metres or is he just nervous about losing yet another drone?

    • James Squires

      Reply

      We haven’t used Hover ourselves, but can speculate on this. Hover does not have GPS, and relies entirely on optical flow for its positioning. Without GPS, it will be hard to fly far off the ground.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Hover – it doesn’t have GPS. But its good enough for its application.

    And it is shipping.

    Shipping beats any feature set or application of a vaporware product.

    Ship the Snap. 😉

    • James Squires

      Reply

      The Hover is good enough for its application, but Snap is being designed for a much wider set of applications. Creating a new tech product is extremely complicated, and we are moving as fast as we can here. Thanks for your patience.

  • Kevin Wickens

    Reply

    Ya know what footage I think would be totally awesome… forget about fancy footage that takes up bandwidth….. grab a snap and grab a P3 or P4 or heck pick up one of those 3DR solo’s on sale for $379 at bestbuy…. then with your iphone camera…. I’m talking to you here James Squires! lol. With your iphone…. video tape the 3DR solo (assuming you want the cheapest well known drone) film it flying into stuff like…. oh…. stationary balloons about head hight filled with helium, walls, maybe a nice plant or two…. Oh I know…. a dozen roses! Yeah!….. then film the exact same scenes (again with iphone so it only takes 5 minutes) with snap doing the exact same thing at the exact same speed. That’s what I’m talking about! Now that would be some A+ promotional video content! And you don’t even have to worry about getting sued by 3DR cause they are no longer in the consumer drone business. Win / Win / Win. 🙂

    What else could you fly it into I wonder that would be fun…. FRUIT! OOOOOH. Peaches to simulate human flesh. Or maybe apples! Oh and maybe you could line up 10 people in 2 lines only 1 foot away from each other and fly the snap down the middle bumping off people’s tummy’s and chests …. 😉

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the update Paul. We are fully aware of the need to get Snap out quickly, and are working tirelessly to get you flying soon.

  • Don

    Reply

    Here is an interesting article about the Mavic. Sounds like DJI isn’t shipping either and is killing links to articles they don’t like. Sounds like the DJI support is alive and well.
    Might be a good time to think twice about canceling your Snap order for a Mavic.

    http://gizmodo.com/where-the-hell-is-the-dji-mavic-pro-1788030901

  • Gary

    Reply

    I am NOT bailing out on Snap. But I did order a Mavic. A few days ago and have a date of Nov 22-Nov 29 to be getting it. They are Both great Flying Cameras. But neither is perfect for everything. Just like no one airplane even of similar size is perfect for everything. I plan on using the one that fits the mission I am on at the time. NObody will ever make the perfect do everything Flying Camera. Get what will work for what you plan to use it for the most.
    It is called common sense. Research before you order. That goes for anything you buy. Drone, Airplane, Sailboat. Car, Pickup chainsaw,lawnmower. Dog or Mate.. That being said there are many times more video reviews of Mavic. I know you are putting your time into getting Snap ready to deliver. But many more Video reviews of snap from 3rd party reviewers would help VR and would be buyers.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Gary. The Mavic is a great product, but we agree that they are quite different products. We also totally understand the need to third party reviews, and have been been in contact with several.

  • Dirk

    Reply

    This was mentioned before and I totally agree. Eventually I’m writing for a German tech magazine and offered a test of the gadget. Famous vlogger need to get a hand on this thing with a concrete shipping date to create buzz.
    A couple of weeks ago Snap was alone in this market, now it competes with big companies.

    If they cannot deliver Beta until end of October, the xmas season vaporates in front of their eyes. Mavic and Karma then will have a head start, even protected blades won’t make up for. But I guess, James and the others are very well of that, because Vantage needs revenue and some enthusiasts like us won’t be sufficient to run a company on.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Don – you posted that a day after DJI announced Mavic is shipping. (and giz wrote it the day before).

    http://www.dji.com/newsroom/news/mavic-pro-shipping-update

  • Eddiebo

    Reply

    Hello Vantage Folks,

    It’s been over a month since the last update. Can you guys hook us up with some 411. I think most of us are being very patient (and will be) but it’s much easier to do so when we’re “in the loop” with where you’re at.

    Thanks Much!

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Hi Eddie. We are primarily focusing on the bottom line, getting Snap shipped to you. Drafting updates takes some focus away from that. We don’t have any big news that is different from our last update, but will try to get something out soon.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Dirk wrote, “…Mavic and Karma then will have a head start…”

    Really? “..then will have…” How about “already have a head start” and then you factor in their sales and distribution network and its not even close.

    VR had an advantage with Snap had they delivered when originally intended, but that ship has sailed. Shrouded props isn’t going to be a big deal, no matter what people think. Image quality, time of flight, ease of use, range, etc. all trump shrouds. Gotta have the basics nailed to compete.

    If I were VR, I’d cheapen the Snap and give it a controller factory option. It needs to be sub $1k MSRP …. given it doens’t have the software that its competitors do, I think $799 would be just about right. $949 with a controller. Honestly, I’d find some niche and do play in that space. .Mil drones, sports video (like Airdog, but better) or something like that. Competing with GoPro and DJI on the general consumer drone space is an uphill battle and getting harder every day.

    None of us know how many people bailed on their pre-orders, but I bet it isn’t pretty. I’m sure there has been a lot of soul searching as VR reacts to the changes in the economic environment as they plot a path forward.

    DJI, GoPro and others have defined the landscape, and what was an advantage has turned into ho-hum. And regardless, if you don’t ship, then none of it matters.

    Version 1 Snap’s will have issues. All version 1 products do. Ship it, fix it, repeat.

    The market isn’t waiting, and the clock is ticking.

  • Kevin

    Reply

    We’ll be at the 5 week mark since the last update. I’m sure we’ll be getting an update from Vantage Robotics soon.

    We’ve all probably missed quite a few good opportunities. Maybe a few vacations and or many times where we really wished we had had our snap already but…. the silver lining is that the Mavic is now shipping and we can all make a decision in terms of what is better suited for our personal needs. More options is always good news for the consumer and back in June when Snap was originally supposed to ship, we had no other major alternative. Now there is at least 1 really good alternative with maybe a 2nd if for somehow the Karma appeals to you despite its many short comings as a drone. Still as a drone / handheld / action camera combo, Karma does definitely offer the most bang for your buck if you were planning on buying a hero 5 regardless.

    I still really like the advantages that Snap has over Mavic but the fact that Mavic is now shipping is good for everyone. We can compare pros and cons, watch real user experience from the Mavic on youtube in the coming weeks and so on and so forth. All good news for would be Snap owners. I for one have watched almost every single Mavic video there is on youtube to date. I’ve learnt so much so I’m very happy that the Mavic was released before snap and hey as an added bonus, I bet the guys are Vantage are putting in crazy overtime hours now to try and get Snap to us as fast as possible. 🙂

  • Don

    Reply

    Very true about the market isn’t waiting..
    Look at the 3DR Solo, a year ago it,was around 1200.00 dollars.
    Today, at BestBuy, you can get the package with spare battery, backpack, spare props and gimbal for 399.00.
    It’s a good flying machine with some cool flight modes. Even though 3dr is dumping it there is someone waiting new flight control SW for it called Solex. It does even more than the Solo app and the person writing it is very responsive to wants and to fix bugs.
    The technology rolls very quickly. I hope VR will keep up. I’m wondering how much longer the 4K camera will be utilized. I see the Mavic has their own small gimbal and camera as well.
    The competition is tough.

    James,

    Will you guys be back at CES again in January? I’d like to see what’s in the works for Solo.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Don. Right now, we are focusing entirely on filling pre-sale orders. That being said, there is a good chance we will make some sort of appearance at CES. Perhaps just the Drone Rodeo?

  • Don

    Reply

    Oops..meant to say what’s happening with Snap…not Solo. I got to pick it up (the Snap) and play with it this year and was impressed by it.

    Sorry

  • Don

    Reply

    Oops..meant to say Snap…not Solo. I got to pick it up (the Snap) and play with it this year and was impressed by it.

    Sorry

  • John

    Reply

    Wow! I just read through the posts and it’s a shame about all the anger. I can understand people being frustrated when something is late, we are a world accustomed to instant gratification. But some of the things said in anger here are very unfortunate. Obviously most have never invested in a startup venture before.

    I had pre-ordered the Hover Passport a few weeks ago when it was announced it was ready for IMMEDIATE shipment. I was intrigued by its compact design, safety and 4K camera. This seemed to be the drone/camera combination I was looking for. And the price wasn’t bad either with a $50 discount for those that pre-ordered. When I checked my online delivery status it indicated “estimated shipping 1 week.” I was both surprised and disappointed to see this because my email said IMMEDIATE delivery. I checked again in a few days and it said “estimated shipping in 2 weeks.” I cancelled my order and start looking for other safe and portable drones with good cameras. Low and behold I found Snap!

    I like that the company is trying to put out the best product possible to make the best impression with their first go. I also like that the company is being upfront with the timing as best they can. I also like that the company takes the time to monitor these posts and has the patience to answer some harsh questions with a voice of reason.

    I hope to see my Snap by Xmas or sooner but if not, I hope to see the best product out there for some time to come.

    John

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for the support John! Our best estimates still have you flying before xmas, but we will make sure to keep you posted if anything changes.

  • Tim

    Reply

    You say the next few weeks, can you be a little more specific? That is a vague answer. Like 2-3 weeks, 4-6 weeks, 6-10 weeks etc……Few could mean anything. Look forward to your response.

    Tim

    • James Squires

      Reply

      We cannot guarantee anything at this point. Betas and presales will be coming out on a first come first serve basis, so it will be different for everyone. We said ‘a few weeks’ because that is the scale we are working on. More than a few days and less than a few months. Sorry we can’t be more precise right now. We will make sure to let you know as soon as we have a more detailed estimate.

  • Kevin Wickens

    Reply

    Well Tim they said that their expectation was to start voluntary beta shipments in the next 4 to 6 weeks. The article was published September 22nd so we’re at the 5 week mark this coming Thursday. I don’t think we’re going to get anything more specific. Looks like building the snap is much harder than first thought. Sucks but what can ya do. I do hope we get an update say at the very least by November 3rd as that would mark the 6 week mark since the last blog update. Even if it’s just a facebook post. 🙂

    Kevin

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    If the ship date has slipped to 2017, just say so. Transparency is how you can keep customers at this point. Get ahead of the bad news and own it. Deliver it before people are at the gates with torches and pitchforks. LOL

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Right now, our estimates match the estimates we sent in the last update, shipping in 2016. We cannot guarantee anything until we psychically have all the parts. If anything changes, we will make sure to let you know.

  • chuck peck

    Reply

    okey dokey , im in! and ah corst waz never out…keep up the great work VR team…would much rather play with this machine instead of more vids…yiippee, can wait, er i mean cant wait lol

  • Tim

    Reply

    Kevin you saw the response I got and then the response you got. That’s the issue I have with snap/vr right now, they are all over the board and have made no real commitment to anything. To me that is very concerning and should be to everyone else who’s made a commitment to them. Right, wrong or indifferent how negatively it seems the majority of people are feeling right now, you can’t go to market having upset even pissed of a lot of people, especially your early supporters; it’s not good business. I hear a lot of talk about DJI failing delievery schedules. They’re a large company that can take a hit, snap/vr can not afford to do that in my humble opinion. They’ll need all these early orders as well as increased orders once product starts to ship to help build up revenue to continue to support their efforts.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Tim. At one time, we were confident about our schedule, and announced a firm month for shipping. But, after issues out of our hands arose, we had to push back those dates. While we would love to give concrete dates now, we do not want to repeat those mistakes. Until we have all the parts in hands, we cannot commit to a shipping date. Please understand that we are committed to getting you the best product as quickly as possible, even if we are not 100% sure on when the exact date for that it.

  • Scott

    Reply

    I support you guys, but it is a bit concerning that you say you don’t have the time to post an update because you are fulfilling pre-orders, yet you are constantly responding here. I’m not complaining about the fact you do respond (that is awesome)…. it’s just a bit disconcerning as to what the priorities are.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry to cause any concern Scott. Just to clarify. Responding to a blog post comment requires a few minutes of one person’s day. Writing a comprehensive update about where we are as a company, in a manner that isn’t too technical, that we send out to thousands of people, requires much more. That being said, we will draft another update soon.

  • Tim

    Reply

    They’re not fulfilling pre-orders. Did you not read some of the post, VR states they are still waiting for parts. if anything is concerning it should be that statement alone. That’s why they are all over the board on delivery. I’m starting to loose the trust and faith in VR not to just to build and ship this drone but to continue to operate as a company. Sorry VR, but how are we/I to think otherwise; you have given us no reason to think otherwise. I’m trying to stay positive but you tell me it’s hard to give a quess on delivery on betas even stating your still waiting for parts. Then one gentleman gives a timeline of events since your last post on delivery and says by your estimates we should here something by Nov. 3rd. Your response “reasonable”. Very confusing and should cause concern for everyone.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry to cause concern here Tim. We will be sending Beta’s out very soon. But, you give a perfect example of why we are resistant to give firm dates. If we say a specific date, we are bound to it. We are quite close to shipping, and are well over the hump. This is a matter of weeks, not months.

  • Raphael

    Reply

    If there was more video available of the Snaps performance I think people would be able to relax a bit and start to get excited again while waiting for delivery. It’s been 21 days since we were told that there would be new video footage “soon”. 20 days is more than enough time to shoot, edit and release at least 1 (if not many) short video clips of the Snaps performance. At this point this NEEDS to be a priority for VR and should be something they should be able to manage to do. Building a cutting edge drone is HARD. It should be (and IS) much simpler to produce footage demonstrating a drone, that according to past statements made should be ready to ship to beta users next week.

    Wanting to focus on filling pre-orders is great but you need to keep your fans and hopefully subsequent customers excited and on-board. SHOWING them what awaits them can do that, continued promises will not.

  • Eddiebo

    Reply

    I’d be VERY happy with a paragraph that says “We’re still here, here’s what we’re working on right now.” Just let us know you’re alive and well out there in the bay area and not in the Caribbean spending all the pre-order money.

    Come on guys, put up a post.

  • Eddiebo

    Reply

    Ahhh. . . That makes me feel better! Thanks Much James!

  • Kevin

    Reply

    Hey everyone. In case many of you did not realised this. Once released…. (when released….) *cry* Snap should be the first fully capable drone that does not produce any propeller shadowing when flying towards the sun. I only say “fully capable” because there are other toy drones or non-full featured drones that would also not produce any prop shadow. This is yet another advantage Snap has over the Mavic and Karma. Just to be sure that I don’t come off as sounding overly biased towards the snap when I know we are all frustrated with the delays, I think we all know the obvious advantages that the Mavic and Karma have over the Snap. I am simply posting this one advantage Snap has over the Mavic and Karma as I have yet to hear mention of it anywhere and after 12 months of following all the drone makers very closely, I only realised this one relatively important Snap advantage very recently. I’ve been going all out on trying to list out all the advantages that Snap has over the Mavic on a spreadsheet at home to convince myself that it’s well worth the wait.

    = )

  • Chris

    Reply

    Very true Kevin. Another for the list – As I understand it with Snap when you tilt your phone away from you the drone moves away. Tilt left it moves left, regardless where its facing. This is a huge advantage when trying to catch it out the sky or flying in general. Something no other drone offers.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Its a vaporware until it ships. Lots of promises, but what will the version 1 release actually have in terms of features?
    It will have bugs. Lots of them.
    There will be things that did not show up in testing.
    Initial customers will need lots of patience with the first units that ship.
    No updates on manufacturing. That would be nice to see. Would instill confidence.
    Did that video ever post?
    November 1 is next Tuesday. Missed beta shipments based on the 4-6 week promise.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Yes. It is STILL vaporware, and will likely have bugs in the early beta unit. We have not posted an update in a month, but plan on posting something next week. Regardless, this has been a 3 year project, and we are just a matter of weeks away from getting our loyal customers flying. We understand that the wait is hard (its probably hardest on us), but this is still a very exciting time. Bugs will get sorted out and software features will get built up quickly. We are all really close to enjoying the fruits of this labor.

  • John

    Reply

    Yes! And the election is rigged!

    Good grief, I come to blog for information, which has been provided by VR, and I have to scroll through all the whining to find it.

    I would suggest to those of you that feel VR Snap is vaporware, going to be riddled with bugs, a scam, an inferior product, etc, etc., just cancel your orders so you can stop stressing over it. Then in a month or so, after we loyal customers that believe in the company and the product receive our Snap’s and start posting reviews and videos for you all to enjoy you can reorder if you choose. Of course you will be paying more, and you won’t receive the additional battery but think of all the stress you will be saving yourself!

    I have also reordered the Hover Passport that I had mentioned in a previous post, because they offered an additional $100 discount. It fills a niche need for my photography. I received a notice after placing the order that it would ship in two weeks. I just checked on its progress and now they are reporting it will be shipped in 2 to 3 months. Yes, disappointing and frustrating. But very common with upstarts, it doesn’t make it right but it happens. I could cancel my order again but I’ve decided that I can wait. What I won’t do is send several negative posts to their forum as if that is what it will take to get the drone shipped. Time to get off my soap box. Have a great day!

  • Kevin Wickens

    Reply

    I’m posting the following as proof to help perhaps show those who are frustrated that it is not only Snap customers that are frustrated. We keep comparing Snap, a small start up with fantastic customer service (my e-mails are always answered in a few days max with thorough replies answering all my questions) plus James is constantly replying to people on the blog and on Vantage Robotics Facebook page every day or every other day or so. The big boys (GoPro and DJI) have both significantly SIGNIFICANTLY delayed the shipping of their new drones. BOTH companies have pushed back the date several times. GoPro currently has a “Shipping soon” date…. so just like Vantage, the date is not specified however unlike Vantage Robotics, GoPro has told their customers nothing. I’ve read some reports that GoPro plans to ship before December and other reports that it will not be available to ship until early 2017. DJI on the other hand has deliberately been using deceptive manipulative tactics to try and keep customers from canceling their orders and to keep their re-sellers on board as well. I’m not giving any company a complete forgiving pass on the delays though. Yes Vantage sort of screwed up their timing for shipping but guess what, out of the 3 companies mentioned Vantage is the only one that has admitted to the delay, apologized for it and offered their pre-order customers compensation. (An extra battery). Shame on all the companies to tell you the truth however the two big boys (DJI and GOPRO) should at the very least learn a few lessons in values and ethics and customer compensation from the smaller start up fellas at Vantage. Now here’s a big one for those of us who have pre-ordered and are a bit frustrated. If you cancel your snap order today (October 27) thinking that you’re going to get your Mavic or Karma BEFORE you would have gotten your snap. Think again. At this point, it is starting to look like snap will be shipping before Karma or Mavic if the Karma or Mavic were ordered today. Yes SOME Mavics have been shipped…. no one knows how many…. but it’s less than 10% based on some online polls…. I’m talking about if you ordered a Mavic today….. In fact DJI now has a shipping date of December 17th for new orders placed on its website…. AND you can’t trust that date because they have pushed that date back 3 or 4 times now since first launch. Many people who bought on day 1 despite numerous times of trying to contact customer service have still not even been giving a date as to when their Mavic will ship.

    So, point of the post is not necessarily to calm the frustration but to let everyone know that no matter which company you have decided to park your money with, virtually everyone is going through significant delays.

    http://gizmodo.com/dji-is-misleading-customers-about-delays-for-its-newest-1788251112?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+gizmodo%2Ffull+%28Gizmodo%29

  • Tibor S. Beczo

    Reply

    Woohoo! You guys plan on putting up another Update next week? 31 Oct – 4 Nov? That sounds great!

    James Squires
    October 27, 2016 at 11:21 am
    “We have not posted an update in a month, but plan on posting something next week.”

    Thanks for posting the picture of the rotor guard cut out “machine” yesterday evening! Very cool to see even a tiny glimpse of progress that can be visualized that that picture. We have NO idea about what it’s like to build a Snap, and the more pictures we see, the better picture we have – that picture leads me to believe you guys are assembling these by hand! Not only that, but actually producing the parts (rotor guards) in house! That takes time!!

    Seriously, thanks for posting that picture on facebook, pulled up the full pic, zoomed in on the part of the pic the camera focused on, really enjoyed it, looked like enough prop guards for 1 Snap in the center of the picture, but with enough carbon fiber material for 7 total guards once cut out. I can only imagine how long it takes that “machine” to cut through one sheet. Keep up the good work! And thanks for always responding to customers. That’s a prize characteristic of Vantage Robotics that already stands head and shoulders above any competition.

    V/r

    Tibor

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks Tibor. We are building some of our DVT unit (essentially beta units for in house testing) here. This is an easy component to cut out, so we can make small batches here. Mass production will be built off site. Stay tuned though. More pics coming!

  • Don

    Reply

    Here is another update on the Mavic. Doesn’t sound like DJI is is completely forthcoming here.
    But, what do you expect from such a large company.
    Come on Snap!!! Bring it home!!

    http://gizmodo.com/dji-is-misleading-customers-about-delays-for-its-newest-1788251112

  • Adrew

    Reply

    If you have ever read a piece written by Adam from gizmodo, who, claiming himself a pilot, crushed a dji phantom 4 intentionally, you will understand why dizmodo bad mouth dji. Honestly, I don’t trust their writings.
    http://gizmodo.com/what-happened-after-i-destroyed-djis-beautiful-new-dron-1785033430

  • Lloyd

    Reply

    Coming from a bad mouth yourself, Adrew, who will trust you? If you watched the actual video and read the whole article you’d understand why and what was going on. He did not do it intentionally, rather he forgot that the collision detection is disabled in sports mode, therefore an accident. I do not find anything bad (mouth) in the article and both made very good points and in fact, we can learn so many things from that article. But thanks for sharing the article. Chill!

  • Chris

    Reply

    G’day Adrew, you may want to re-read the article you linked in your post. It clearly states it was an accident. He was testing the obstacle avoidance and forgot DJI avoidance system is only on some of the time, it was in no way intentional. Although you correct in that he has no place reveiwing drones judging by the utube video.

  • Alan

    Reply

    “It clearly states it was an accident.”

    Nope, not buying that. Watch the video again, listen to the guy’s words. You can’t call that an accident.

  • Paul J.

    Reply

    Long but worth it. GoPro Karma v. Mavic review.

  • Kevin

    Reply

    I love seeing how everyone is taking this downtime to watch and learn and educate themselves on all the other products out there. Their strengths and weaknesses as well as getting a real good sense of the challenges and problems that all the drone manufacturers are currently facing.

    Now with that said, tomorrow marks the 6 week mark to the day since the last update which stated that beta units would be shipped out in 4 to 6 weeks. I think it’s about time for an update via Facebook and or blog reply and or full blog post. I say a small Facebook update is good enough to keep the peace and not take too much time away from the work. 🙂

    Putting the pressure on you James! Update! Update! Update! Pitchforks, spades and torches come out at midnight on Friday!

    Might as well use this post to also ask a few more questions about Snap’s capabilities since we are much further along in the development phase now.

    1) What is the ISO range of the camera for video and stills. Pretty sure we asked about shutter speed abilities and that was answered but never ISO range.

    2) Tripod mode on the Mavic seems like a genius idea and so far very popular. Given that Snap does not have a 3 axis gimbal. What has Vantage robotics done to smooth out the yaw axis. Is there a way through the software to limit the speed of the yaw. I know you guys mentioned you put a tonne of work into ultra tight yaw control. Which I think totally totally can make up for the lack of a yaw axis…. however I’m hoping that the sensitivity of the yaw “virtutal stick” in the smartphone app can be adjusted for sensitivity.

    3) Similar to question 2, can the sensitivity of EVERYTHING be modified. i.e. “smart tilt” sensitivity as well as camera pitch “virtual stick” sensitivity. As you know, pitch on other controllers is often controlled via a roll button on the top of the controller. I’m hoping that Snap’s pitch camera control will be intuitive on the app as well as give users the option to control that pitch in an ultra smooth fashion. My personal preference would be to incorporate a programmable pitch control as well as manual. Where I can issue a command to lower the pitch by 45 degrees over 3 seconds or 2 seconds or whatever I want. This would blow the competition out of the water as the competition does not have this feature and the closest we get to this feature is the Karma’s “reveal” smart shot mode which is kinda flakey and useless.

    Last but not least, another shout out to the first fully functional drone without propeller shadow that can easily be grabbed out of the air for landing and can easily be launched by hand. This is going to be huge! Huge I say! I know the focus is on safety but I still find it amazing that on top of all the safety features, Snap offers some extremely major practical advantages for advanced aerial videographers.

    Kevin

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Thanks for checking in and sorry for any update delays. We have been waiting until we have some legit, concrete news before posting our next update. That being said… You should expect an update this coming Friday or Monday.

      1. ISO range will be 100-3200 (video) and 100-1600 (photo). Again, control of this setting will most likely come as a software update in the coming months.

      2 and 3. Snaps super fast FOC motor controllers and EIS stabilization will make the yaw controls super smooth. There will also be a lot of settings to control the sensitively of these sorts of things.

  • Kevin

    Reply

    Ooops meant to say “lack of a yaw gimbal axis” not “lack of a yaw axis” lol…..

  • Don

    Reply

    Kevin,

    The 3DR Solo does have this feature. I just forget to use it but it works well in my experience.

    My personal preference would be to incorporate a programmable pitch control as well as manual. Where I can issue a command to lower the pitch by 45 degrees over 3 seconds or 2 seconds or whatever I want. This would blow the competition out of the water as the competition does not have this feature and the closest we get to this feature is the Karma’s “reveal” smart shot mode which is kinda flakey and useless.

  • Kevin

    Reply

    Aaaaaaaah. Good point Don. Yeah I often don’t think about the solo since it’s been discontinued. They had a good thing going. Too bad they couldn’t make it happen. A Hero 5 with ISO and shutter speed control and obstacle avoidance module could have given DJI a run for their money no doubt. Oh well.

  • Don

    Reply

    @Kevin
    Yeah it is to bad. I really like mine. It’s not without its bugs but mine are gone at this point. You can’t beat the price. At BB, when on sale 399.00 with backpack, gimbal, extra props and extra battery.
    I picked up a second one for spare parts just in case I damage mine. I was playing with it today at Mammoth Lakes, Ca. shooting over some little lakes. Made me a bit nervous.
    I can hardly wait to see what the BB Black Friday price will be. Might pick up a third.

  • chuck peck

    Reply

    woo woo, gettin close now, we’re in the short-rows guys! tks for the posts on here VR guys…really appreciate it, business savy like you all are showing will keep me coming back, over an over…weigh to go! tks again.

  • Tim Smith

    Reply

    Sooooooooooo its November! Anybody else ready for an update?
    Scratch that. Anybody else ready for some GOOD NEWS?!
    Trying real hard to stay optimistic. Cause good lord if they start talking ‘early spring 2017’ i’m probably gonna break something…

    • James Squires

      Reply

      No need to break anything Tim. Things are moving along really well over here. Expect another big update early next week. Also, make sure to check out our Facebook and Instagram feeds for some smaller updates.

  • John

    Reply

    I have been loving all the new media you guys have been releasing. Keep it up, although I do need to say, that beach video that you just released had me excited about the high quality video. At least until I saw the beach house and pilot, something seemed off about the image and it was a real let down. I could not understand how such a good camera looked so wrong so I rewatched it a few times and then realised why. The “videographer” was filming into the sun, this made the feature points in the scene really dark. I am relieved there is nothing wrong with the camera, but seriously? Talk about amateur hour. A month of filming but he can’t take 10 minutes to run it through Resolve 12.5 and brighten those areas or wait until the suns in favour for recording. This is not a dig at Vantage Robotics, I just can’t understand what he was trying to do.

  • Scott

    Reply

    You are quoted as saying an update on “Friday or Monday.” What a shock! We get neither! Seriously having doubts about your product being reliable if you can’t even be reliable enough to fulfill your quotes.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry Scott. As you can image, we have a lot going on here. Hope you didn’t lose too much faith with a Tuesday morning delivery.

  • Ron Dotson

    Reply

    Oh! How much longer?

  • Tim

    Reply

    I’m with you Scott. Not sure whats up. It has me concerned as well. We’re not talking about a cheap drone here. The continued broken promises just continue to mount. Its not good business coming to market and having people doubt your word as a company. If theres one thing you have to have in your business model today (especially a startup) is trust. Right now they aren’t doing very well in the trust department, something in my humble opinion they need to drastically address if they want too evolve in this market. The only way to send a clear message is to cancel our orders as others have. I’m sticking it out for a bit longer but the continued broken promises are driving me away from keeping my business with them.

    • James Squires

      Reply

      Sorry you feel this way Tim. We are doing everything we can to stay as honest and transparent as possible. Bringing a new piece of technology to market is an extremely complicated ordeal, and we thank you for your patience here.

  • Kevin

    Reply

    Hey Tim. Good news. From when you posted that at 6:17 am you only had to wait a few hours! Hehe. Wooohooo! Go Team Snap Go!

  • Tim

    Reply

    hahaha you’re welcome Kevin. If it wasn’t for that post I’m not so certain the betas would be shipping this Friday hahaha. Well until I hear officially they have shipped and beta orders or in the customers hands, then I’ll believe it. Not trying to be negative, just cautious since there have been delays one after the other. Beta customers please post often once you receive and used Snap. Good Day all!!!

  • Kevin

    Reply

    Good points brotha! OMG I can’t wait! So so so excited.

  • Don

    Reply

    All,

    The last thing you want to happen is what happened to Karma today. They are wanting them all back with a refund. No replacements being sent. Apparently, it loses power during flight. Not good fo GoPro. Perhaps they should have spent more resources in testing before releasing it.

  • chuck peck

    Reply

    so VR folks…did the betas go out?, how many went out, just curious…any vids from any of the testers yet?

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