Drones are incredible at helping users capture photos and videos from angles previously only seen in high-budget movies. And not only are users capturing tons of footage, but the quality of that footage continues to grow—with smaller and more portable drones capable of recording 4k video. But all that high-resolution content surfaces a new issue: where the heck do you store all of it? And how can you easily do it without interrupting your precious fly time?
Well, Seagate and DJI have come up with a solution…
Back in January at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Seagate and DJI announced a partnership to help drone users solve their ever-growing issue of needing space to store footage. And the first product of their collaboration has been revealed with the new Fly Drive: a portable hard drive with up to 2TB of space and a MicroSD card slot that pilots can use to quickly and easily back up their photos and videos on location—without the need of a computer or other heavy equipment.
Seagate is saying that the Fly Drive can store over 60 hours of 4k video at 30fps (frames per second). That means with DJI’s latest drone—the Mavic Pro—it can save around 250 flights worth of content (give or take a flight or two). While portable hard drives are nothing new, the inclusion of the MicroSD card slot in the hard drive is certainly unique. The integrated hub is UHS-II rated. This means you can transfer footage from the drone to the MicroSD card—or from the MicroSD card to your computer—pretty, darn fast. And the Fly Drive has a USB 3.1 Type-C interface. So when you’re ready to offload that footage from your hard drive to your computer, you won’t be waiting around too long for it to finish.
The Fly Drive also features a protective bumper to help provide shock resistance against, well… you and your klutziness. And similar to what you might find in a LaCie Rugged Drive, the Fly Drive includes a USB-C cable tucked inside of the bumper. So if you want to transfer those files on the spot, you don’t have to worry about remembering to bring a cable.
To sweeten the deal, Seagate is including two months of Adobe Premiere Pro CC—a $19.99 per month value—for free!
There are still a few unanswered questions when it comes to the drive, like: how does a user know that the files have been successfully transferred from the MicroSD card to the hard drive? Because it would suuuuuuck to lose your footage, or overwrite it by recording new footage. I assume that little, flashing light on the drive has something to do with it. And if so, what’s powering the drive? If it’s a battery, how often does it need to be charged? And finally, does the MicroSD card need to be reformatted before using again (assumedly, the answer is no).
All this and more will reveal itself when the drive is released this Summer (a Seagate rep informed me it’s sometime in June). As for the price, well, it’s pretty affordable at $119.99. And Seagate and DJI are “committed to uncovering new innovations for drone pilots and their data.” So this sounds like just the beginning.