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Tech & Gadgets
DJI Tello: say hello to the little Tello
by Seth L.
BIG SPARK, LITTLE TELLO

Out of the box, the Tello looks almost like the Spark in terms of design and aesthetically appealing two tone body frame but that’s where the similarities stop. Weighing in at only 80g with a dimension of 98x92.5x41 mm, the Tello is a high-quality, smaller and lighter brother to the Spark but it does come with a few downgrades to keep the cost down, especially the omission of the important (in our opinion) gimbal-stabilised HD camera.

Also the Tello relies on less expensive, weaker brushed motors to deliver thrust as compared to the brushless variety on the Spark. With that said, you don’t have to worry about DJI putting low-quality brushed motors in the Tello of course but they do tend to degrade over time so let’s hope the ones on the Tello last longer than most…

Flying the Tello couldn’t be easier – pair it with your mobile device via the Tello app, toss the Tello up into the air or let it hover away from your palm and off it goes to do your bidding. With 13 minutes of flight time per full charge, the Tello can travel up to 100m away to take the shots that you want.

The Tello is also an acrobatic wonder that can do 360 degrees flips on the fly. Don’t worry about crashing the Tello though as it is has visual positioning and collision avoidance system. If you do crash it, it is safely protected by plastic bumpers and is light enough to bounce around undamaged. The Tello also supports VR flight modes with compatible Bluetooth controller and VR googles.

Equipped with high-quality image processors, the 5mp 720p camera on Tello is able to capture pretty decent images and videos. The camera on the Tello may not be on a gimbal but it has digital image stabilisation to help smoothen things out somewhat.

Play is an essential part of learning, so DJI made the Tello programmable for kids. Scratch, a MIT-developed block coding system allows kids and teens to learn the basics of programming while having fun. More advanced users can access Tello SDK to develop drone applications themselves.

VERDICT

While there are a lot of options for quadcopter drones under RM500, very little competition can stack up to what the Tello offer in terms of flight time, range and camera quality. For only RM479 (at the DJI official online store), you get a drone that is easy to use, with decent flight time, good camera and pushes educational coding to boot. We dare you to find something better that can give you that much for that price.

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