On this page you will find a complete Xiaomi Mi Drone review. The announcement of the Mi Drone caused a lot of excitment in the drone community since it is the new competitior to the DJI Phantom – something which has dominated the consumer drone market for several years now.
You can buy the Xiaomi Mi Drone here.
In this article I will not delve too much into the technical characteristics and specifications of the Xiaomi Mi Drone since you can find them all over the internet. Instead I’ll focus on its features, how it flies and its overall feel. Ultimately, by the end of this page you should have a better idea as to whether or not you should buy the Xiaomi Mi Drone.
So it is very clear that Xiaomi have based the Mi Drone on the Phantom. They have a 1080p 60 fps camera that of the Typhoon Yuneec – a round ball that has a 3-axis system surrounded by shock absorbers. In my personal opinion this camera looks old and dated unlike the Phantom 4 which has a much more modern looking camera.
The props on the Mi Drone are decent, however I felt that the mechanism that they use is not as complete as that of the DJI Phantom. You have to hold the nut and at the same time try and screw in the propeller which can be quite challenging.
The Remote Control
The remote control also looks a little like the DJI Phantom (with the same type of leavers as those found in the Husban X4.) The main problem with the control is that if you wan’t to attach an FPV screen you are very limited for choice. This is because the FPV screen holder wont hold anything bigger than a smartphone meaning you are limited to using a small screen. If you wan’t to use a larger screen you won’t be able to have it resting on the controller. Also, the two antennas need to point down towards the ground if you are using an FPV screen. Again, I don’t like this feature.
But there are far more problems…
If you wan’t the drone to fly with an FPV screen, you (obviously) need to connect your smartphone or tablet to your radio. Xiaomi make you connect the two using a USB cable. Without this cable you cannot fly in FPV. When you connect the two, you open up the Mi Drone App. However, the first problem is that the App is only in English or Chinese – so if you speak a different language such as French then you’ll find it hard to use this application. The second problem is that when I was using it, the app crashed a few times. This meant that I lost the video that I was capturing. This is something that I would not wan’t to happen if I was trying to get some video footage for a film etc. Therefore I think that the Xiaomi Mi Drone is very unreliable.
The Main Reason You Should Not Buy A Xiaomi Mi Drone
Listen carefully to this next bit. The reason you should not buy this drone is because it is not yet possible to either record videos or take pictures. This is because Xiaomi has not updated its application to actually work. This is actually embarrassing for Xiaomi. Obviously in the future it will be updated but for now, please save your money and don’t buy this drone.
Xiaomi Mi Drone Flying Quality
The flying experience in the Xiaomi Mi Drone was actually rather nice. The stability was very good and it takes advantage of well known features such as automatic return and route planning.
The drone flies very smoothly and it gradually picks up speed in a safe and controlled manner – sometimes I felt that the response time was a little slow (perhaps excessive stabilization compromises the response time?)
One thing that I personally don’t like is how this drone lacks any excitement. It is almost too stable and too safe making this drone boring… Nevertheless, if your looking for something that does what it says on the tin and will just fly from A to B then the Xiaomi Mi Drone will do just that for you.
Xiaomi Mi Drone Vs Phantom 3/4
The Mi Drone was released to compete with the Phantom. Unfortunately, I don’t think it will be the small bomb that it was expected to be. It adopts the same principles as the Phantom 3/4 but it is one step behind in performance. It doesn’t fly as well, it is less reliable and has fewer onboard features than the Phantom 3/4.
However, it has one main competitive advantage… its price. The Mi Drone was announced with a price of $589.00. This is significantly cheaper than the Phantom and therefore means the Mi Drone still has a target market.
Personally I would save up and wait until you have the capital to buy a Phantom drone. Especially since Xiaomi have not got the video feature working yet. Thus, I would not recommend buying the Xiaomi Mi Drone.