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Autel Robotics finally releases the foldable EVO drone. Should DJI be worried?

Autel Robotics first debuted their foldable EVO drone at the Consumer Electronics Show in early January of 2018. Today, the company has officially launched their latest product on their website for sale, starting at $999. Due to high demand, it has already gone out of stock and third party dealers have been said to only receive five units from Autel themselves due to production issues.

Autel EVO

The EVO boasts high-end specs that go head-to-head with DJI’s two most popular drones; the DJI Mavic Pro and the DJI Phantom 4 Pro. What makes this drone stand out is how it combines the best that the Mavic Pro and Phantom 4 Pro have to offer, portability (foldable) and image quality (frame & bit rate but not sensor size).


The form factor is a folding body with folding propellers that make the drone easy to travel with. While being slightly larger than DJI’s Mavic Pro, it holds a camera that has the same specs as the Phantom 4 Pro’s. Despite it’s smaller sensor, it can shoot in 4K at 60 frames per second and in 1080p at 120 frames per second with a maximum bitrate of 100Mbps. The dynamic range is incredible and produces videos and photos that look professional.

While a drone is not all about the camera, the EVO’s performance hangs with the best of them. However, in preliminary tests that I have run with a pre-production unit, I have noticed the advertised specs don’t quite match up with my findings.

Flight time:

  • Advertised – 30 minutes
  • Real world – 22.5 minutes

Maximum distance:

  • Advertised – 4.3 miles
  • Real world – 1.8 miles

Maximum speed:

  • Advertised – 44.7 mph
  • Real world – 37 mph

With final firmware right around the corner, sport mode will be added to achieve its maximum speed of 44.7 mph. If you are on Android you can download the Explorer application here, but if you are using an iOS device you’ll have to wait for Apple to approve the application for their app store, which will hopefully be soon!

What do you think about Autel’s Evo? Should DJI get nervous or are you sure that whatever product they will be launching on July 18th will take care of that? Let us know in the comments below.

Note: Please welcome our newest team member, Billy Kyle! This is his first post on DroneDJ and we will get him settled in and up to speed over the next few days. Welcome onboard, Billy! Btw – There’s a good chance you know him from his videos on YouTube.


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