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PowerEgg X is an AI selfie camera that can turn into a drone

And it can fly in the rain.


This story is part of CES, where CNET covers the latest news on the most incredible tech coming soon.

PowerVision has made drones that fly and drones that swim and now, it's got one that flies in the rain. The PowerEgg X, debuting at CES 2020, is considerably smaller than the original PowerEgg that was essentially a large 4.6-pound flying egg with a 4K-resolution camera. The PowerEgg X is still eggish in shape, at least partly, but looks a lot more like a typical quadcopter than its predecessor and seemingly does a lot more, too. 

The company bills it as a three-in-one camera because of its design that can be converted from an autonomous tabletop selfie camera to a drone or handheld camera, and its use of "proprietary AI algorithm and robotics technology capabilities." As a selfie camera, it'll use facial recognition to track subjects and keep them in the middle of the frame. It will also continue to track that subject even if they move in and out of its field of view. 

Those same AI features can be used handheld, and since the 4K-resolution camera is mounted on a three-axis motorized gimbal, the video should look smooth regardless of camera shake. And then there's drone mode, so you can presumably get the equally smooth video from the air. PowerVision includes waterproof accessories -- a case and landing float -- that allow it to fly in heavy rain as well as take off and land on water, which is something I really haven't seen since the failed Lily Camera.   

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PowerVision also added an audio sync to its mobile app, so you can record audio using your phone's mic or wireless headphone and combine it with your video. The company said it will get up to 30 minutes of flight and has automatic obstacle avoidance as well. 

The PowerEgg X is available now in the US at BestBuy.com, B&H Photo, Amazon.com and Powervision.me starting at $899.

The consumer and prosumer camera drone market contracted considerably in the past two years with market leader DJI dominating the category. However, in the past year there's been a handful of competitors like Parrot, Skydio, Zero Zero Robotics and now PowerVision offering drones with features and designs unavailable from DJI.  

Originally published Jan. 7.