Subscribe to Tech Crunch feed Tech Crunch
Startup and Technology News
Updated: 10 hours 33 min ago

DJI adds much of Iraq and Syria to its list of no-fly zones for its drones

April 26, 2017 - 10:48pm
 Drone maker DJI has updated their software to turn huge expanses of Syria and Iraq into no-fly zones. DJI usually prevents users from navigating their drones over sensitive areas like military bases and airports, but its new no-fly zones cover a much wider breadth and includes most of the northern half of both countries (including the city of Mosul), according to DJI’s map. Read More

DJI’s new FPV goggles let you control your drone with head movements

April 24, 2017 - 10:18am
 When DJI announced the Mavic Pro last year they also teased a pair of FPV goggles that could be used to see first-person video from DJI’s drones. But we didn’t get many more details than that… until now. Read More

With DroneDeploy’s Fieldscanner, pilots can create maps as they fly

April 18, 2017 - 7:41am
 Flying drones to inspect a farm, construction site, or any other venue from overhead can generate a huge amount of data. It takes time, though, for drone users to upload and turn this high-resolution data into maps, graphs or business intelligence they can act upon. Today, a data management platform for drones called DroneDeploy, is launching a tool called Fieldscanner that makes it possible… Read More

DJI’s new Phantom 4 Advanced makes their lineup even more confusing

April 13, 2017 - 1:08pm
 DJI has announced a new drone in the Phantom 4 lineup. The Phantom 4 Advanced will take the place of the regular old Phantom 4, which will be discontinued on April 30th when the new version launches. The new drone will cost $1,349 – which is $50 less than what the original Phantom 4 started at. The Phantom 4 Advanced will borrow a bunch of features from the Phantom 4 Pro, which remains… Read More

Why Flybrix skipped crowdfunding to launch its LEGO drone kits

April 11, 2017 - 2:31pm
 Flybrix first dreamed up a drone that kids could build with LEGO bricks in 2015. At the time, the co-founders debated the merits of launching with a crowdfunding campaign. They craved the exposure that brands attracted on Kickstarter and Indiegogo, but they knew consumers were growing suspicious of promises made by crowdfunding hardware startups. Read More

SkyX drones are half-helicopter, half-plane and built to fly long distances

April 6, 2017 - 4:53pm
 A Markham, Ontario startup called SkyX Ltd. emerged from stealth today to share with TechCrunch details about its unique industrial drone designs. The company’s SkyOne drones take off and land like a helicopter, but fly more like an airplane, with a range of more than 25 miles (40 km) per charge. For drone industry nerds, this means they have both VTOL and fixed-wing elements. Read More

The leaked DJI Spark looks to be the Mavic Pro’s little brother

April 6, 2017 - 4:42pm
 DJI appears to be about to launch a drone even smaller than the Mavic Pro. Supposedly called the Spark, pics of the little drone have been popping up on several sites, though DJI has yet to officially announce it. Read More

Airobotics scores authorization to fly autonomous drones in Israel

March 27, 2017 - 3:16pm
 A startup based in Petah Tikva, Israel, Airobotics, has scored the right to fly drones autonomously for business purposes in Israel. The Civil Aviation Authority of Israel (CAAI) was the first in the world to authorize commercial, fully unmanned drone flights in their nation’s airspace. Read More

John Deere partners with Kespry to bring drones and aerial data to construction and forestry

March 7, 2017 - 4:59pm
 Heavy equipment makers Deere & Co., better known as John Deere, have forged a strategic alliance with drone-tech startup Kespry, the companies announced Tuesday in Las Vegas at CONEXPO, an international trade show for the construction industry. The deal could prove a boon for sales of Kespry’s drones and data analytics software. It could help John Deere tap into a new, high-tech means… Read More

AirMap raises $26 million to manage air traffic as drone use surges

February 23, 2017 - 4:33am
battle-drones Lower airspace isn’t crowded with drones quite yet. But as drones become more pervasive, a startup called AirMap is building software and systems to help drone operators fly only where it’s safe and legal to do so. The task will prove completely different from that of managing airliners as we do today, says AirMap CEO and cofounder Ben Marcus who is also serving as the co-chair for… Read More

Exyn unveils AI to help drones fly autonomously, even indoors or off the grid

February 21, 2017 - 12:22pm
Exyn Technologies AI software allows drones to fly without pilots where GPS and Wifi isn't available. A startup called Exyn Technologies Inc. today revealed AI software that enables drones to fly autonomously, even in dark, obstacle-filled environments or beyond the reaches of GPS. Read More

UPS tests show delivery drones still need work

February 21, 2017 - 7:30am
ups-florida-footage-02_42_08_07-still113 The logistics juggernaut specifically launched an octocopter, or multi-rotor drone, from the top of a delivery van. The drone delivered a package directly to a home, then returned to the van which had now moved down the road to a new location. The van pulled the drone down with robotic arms, to dock on its roof. The drone used in Monday’s test was made by Ohio-based Workhorse Group Inc. Read More

Ornithologists are using drones to eavesdrop on songbirds

February 18, 2017 - 11:08am
listening When conservationists put drones to work in field research, they typically function as flying eyes that gather imagery of the habitat and wildlife below. Now, ornithologists from Gettysburg College in Pennsylvania are using drones as flying ears to monitor songbirds in the Appalachian Mountains. Results of their drone study were published in the peer-reviewed journal The Auk:… Read More

Microsoft open sources a simulator for training drones, self-driving cars and more

February 15, 2017 - 11:15am
Microsoft AIRO group on January 24, 2017.(Photography by Scott Eklund/Red Box Pictures) Microsoft has made available a beta version of an advanced virtual world for training autonomous drones, as well as other gadgets that move on their own. The software, which is available on GitHub, recreates conditions like shadows, reflections and other potentially confusing real-world conditions in a highly detailed, highly realistic virtual environment – without the risk of the… Read More

Attack of the drones

February 14, 2017 - 11:00am
drone-rain A drone recently crashed into a Boeing 737 as it approached a landing strip in Mozambique. The damage to the aircraft was extensive. Over the last year, drone crashes have been reported at a nuclear facility, the Empire State Building and one crashed through a window into an office building. For some, the war of the machines has begun — and you don’t need deep pockets to play. Read More

Uncorking innovation with Treasury Wine Estates in Napa

February 10, 2017 - 11:30am
Treasury Wine Estates vineyards. The ancient craft of wine making conjures romantic notions of hand picked vines, and bare feet crushing grapes. However, wine production today is a thoroughly high-tech affair. Degree programs in viticulture and oenology, from Cornell University to UC Davis, reflect advances in the industry. Professors and courses there now focus on topics like “environmental control, and modified… Read More

Don’t expect uplift in delivery drones for years, says Gartner

February 9, 2017 - 2:25am
prime-air_03 While delivery drones might be an excellent PR vehicle for Amazon’s Prime membership brand, they will not be an excellent vehicle for very much else — at least not in the short term. Read More

Energy giant AES partners with Measure to improve worker safety with drones

February 7, 2017 - 8:32am
Measure flies drones to inspect solar panels in a field below. Major power producer AES Corp. is ramping up the use of drones with an eye toward shielding workers from industry hazards. Rather than buy all their own unmanned aerial systems, they’ve engaged D.C.-based drone services provider Measure to get access to a more extensive fleet. Measure recently raised $15 million in venture funding. According to its Vice President and Chief… Read More

DARPA shows off its SideArm system catching drones mid-flight

February 6, 2017 - 11:16am
ternsidearm_619_316 Military-style fixed-wing drones are easy to launch, but difficult to land; DARPA aims to change that with SideArm, a portable drone-grabbing system that snatches the fast-moving craft right out of the air. Read More

Amazon Echo spot ‘primes’ Super Bowl audience for drone delivery in the US

February 5, 2017 - 9:03pm
amazon-prime-air_private-trial_ground-high-res Although Amazon ran a Super Bowl ad for Echo, its delivery drones stole the show. The e-commerce titan’s Super Bowl spot featured a woman and a man sitting on a couch with a bowl of Doritos between them. The man is seen licking the Doritos’ orange cheese residue from his fingertips and returning them to the bowl for another helping. At this point, the woman throws a little… Read More