DJI Smart Controller next to Mavic 2
DJI's Smart Controller can operate drones without smartphones

No mobile device needed. DJI has revealed the new Smart Controller for Mavic 2 drones, and it has a built-in display.

Priced at $650, DJI claims the Smart Controller’s display is “ultra-bright” and will allow “pilots to fly the nearest drones without using a smartphone or tablet.” The device can be paired with both the Mavic 2 Zoom and Mavic 2 Pro.

DJI Smart Controller
DJI Smart Controller

Often times, drone controllers require a mobile phone. Users have to connect their phone to the controller to control the drone and view the live images. The Smart Control looks to simplify everything.

A bright display for even sunny days

The Smart Controller sports a 5.5-inch display that can show images streamed from whatever drone it’s connected to in full HD resolution. Also, DJI claims the remote’s screen is twice as bright as any mobile screen. That will make it easier to preview shots on bright sunny days.

“Drone pilots can take advantage of its compact, highly portable design that has been optimized for use in direct sunlight,” says DJI.

To be more specific, the screen has an output of 1000 cd/m2. What does that mean? Well, that’s twice as bright as a standard smartphone’s output.

Audio and video playback

The controller comes with a built-in microphone and speaker. This is for live streamers looking to get some aerial shots and get some commentary into the stream. And it can playback video through the HDMI port at 4K 60fps with H.264 and H.265.

Other features

The Smart Controller’s battery lasts up to 2.5 hours and it can operate in temperatures ranging from -4 degrees Fahrenheit to 104 degrees Fahrenheit. And with the DJI GO 4 app’s Go Share function, you can transfer aerial videos and photos from the Smart Controller to your mobile device.

Pricing and availability

The Smart Controller will be open for purchase beginning in early 2019 for $649.

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