The DJI Mini 3 Pro has only just landed, but rumors are mounting that the king of drones is preparing to release an indoor flying camera. Well, that now seems increasingly likely, thanks to the first leaked images of the unusual drone.
The DJI Avata, as it’s expected to be called, appears to be a so-called “cinewhoop” drone with 3-inch propellers, according to footage posted to Twitter by regular DJI leakers. @OsitaLV and @DealsDrone.
Cinewhoop drones are typically small models with built-in propeller guards that are designed to fly in tight indoor spaces, allowing you to create floating steadicam-style shots. And the leaked images show what appears to be a DJI-branded drone that fits that bill.
But while the leaked images resemble some renders we saw earlier this week, they also show a design that is said to be markedly different from DJI’s current lineup. DJI drones generally follow a gray color scheme, while the photos show a drone with a black plastic body and a design typical of current cinewhoop drones.
Still, the front camera module bears some DJI hallmarks, and the logos on the top and bottom look authentic. It’s possible these photos show an early prototype rather than the finished product, but evidence is mounting that DJI is indeed preparing to enter one of the few drone spaces it has yet to conquer.
The two key things DJI could bring to cinewhoop drones — automated flight modes and a high-quality camera — aren’t really shown in these leaks. The images show a drone with a large battery and a small tilting camera, although it’s unclear if the latter is intended for shooting video or sending a stream to some accompanying FPV goggles.
Still, it certainly looks like an interesting all-in-one concept for those looking to shoot dynamic indoor video at events – and if it follows the trend of recent DJI releases, we can expect to see plenty no more leaks in the race. – until its supposed launch between July and August.
Analysis: DJI is aiming for a niche but an exciting new airspace
A cinewhoop-style DJI drone has been rumored for years, with regular DJI commentator @OsitaLV sketching the concept above in 2020. But these new leaked photos suggest a small indoor drone is now next. on the launch list after the recent arrival of the DJI Mini 3 Pro.
The 3-inch class of cinewhoop drones have become the most popular because they are small and safe enough to fly indoors, but also powerful enough to carry a decent camera. So while this type of drone would be a relatively niche launch for DJI, it could also find a decent following, especially if it’s relatively affordable, as the leaked photos suggest.
Right now, DJI’s cheapest drone is the DJI Mini SE, but the DJI Avata seems to be a cross between the DJI FPV and a cheaper drone like the Ryze Tello (which is based on the flight technology of DJI). That means it could be an attempt to bring cinewhoop-style FPV drones to the masses – or a hovering ‘steadicam’ for YouTubers looking to create dynamic cutscenes.
It would also help give a different appeal to the new GoPro Hero 10 Black Bones camera, which has been very well designed for DIY enthusiasts who are currently the main purchasers of First Person View (FPV) drones.