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Parrot, Verizon and Skyward bring 4G-connected drone to US

August 5, 2021  - By 0 Comments
Photo: Verizon

Photo: Verizon

The Parrot ANAFI Ai is powered by Verizon 4G LTE and integrated with Skyward software to pave the way for near real-time data transfer, remote deployment and beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) flight operations.

Verizon, Parrot and Skyward have entered a partnership to bring an out-of-the-box 4G LTE connected drone to the United States.

The Parrot ANAFI Ai is an off-the-shelf drone that connects to Verizon’s 4G LTE network. Verizon 4G LTE connectivity is provided exclusively to Skyward subscribers at no additional cost. The Skyward Connected Drone Solution gives enterprises one complete experience for planning, flying, data transfer and processing data.

The Parrot ANAFI Ai professional drone is open to developers with a full open-source app, autonomous one-click photogrammetry and new levels of cybersecurity. Combined with the Skyward Connected Drone Solution, the ANAFI Ai makes complex missions simpler, safer and quicker in photogrammetry, mapping, modeling in construction, infrastructure, inspection, surveying, public safety and enterprise.

The drone features an omni-directional obstacle-avoidance system, 48 MP imaging accuracy, 4K 60 fps smooth videos, and up to 32 minutes of flight time in an airframe that weighs less than 2 pounds.

Parrot ANAFI Ai’s embedded Secure Element secures the 4G LTE link between the drone and the user’s device. Parrot’s streaming software quickly optimizes the definition and frame rate for the connected 4G network.

Parrot ANAFI Ai pilots can subscribe to a paid account or a free trial of the Skyward Connected Drone Solution to:

  • plan with Skyward’s airspace map and fleet management tools
  • obtain fast, automated access to controlled airspace from the Federal Aviation Administration with LAANC
  • fly over Verizon 4G LTE with the Skyward InFlight mobile app
  • process with Skyward Mapping & Modeling, powered by Pix4D
  • transfer data during flight over 4G LTE.

Users can activate 4G LTE connectivity in a few taps exclusively in the Skyward InFlight mobile app. Once activated, the connectivity provides a seamless backup connection to the flight controller in case of interference or interruption. It paves the way for near real-time data transfer, remote deployment and BVLOS flight operations, allowed with a waiver from the FAA.

“Enterprise drone programs are pushing the limits of technology available today and advanced operators are ready for a connected, trusted and capable drone to take their drone programs to the next level,” said Mariah Scott, Head of Verizon Robotics Business Technology. “Parrot ANAFI Ai connected to Verizon 4G LTE marks an industry milestone toward distributed, remote, persistent operations that lets users fly to anywhere from anywhere with near real-time data transfer.”

“Cellular connectivity is the new communications standard for the professional drone industry and Parrot ANAFI Ai seeks to set new standards for drones at work” said Henri Seydoux, Founder and CEO of Parrot.  “We designed ANAFI Ai’s 4G LTE connectivity, which enables precise, robust and secure control at any distance with a 4G LTE connection that avoids obstacles. Advanced artificial intelligence, autonomous flights, best-in-class imaging, photogrammetry accuracy and reliable 4G LTE connectivity on the Verizon network, put powerful new tools in the hands of professionals like never before and we truly believe it is a game changer for the professional drone industry.”

The Skyward Connected Drone Solution with Parrot ANAFI Ai on Verizon 4G LTE will be available in the second half of 2021 through Skyward.

Tracy Cozzens

About the Author:

Senior Editor Tracy Cozzens joined GPS World magazine in 2006. She also is editor of GPS World’s newsletters and the sister website Geospatial Solutions. She has worked in government, for non-profits, and in corporate communications, editing a variety of publications for audiences ranging from federal government contractors to teachers.

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