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Hover 2 folding 4K selfie drone uses crazy pop-up radar, AI to track your moves

This might be the smartest, smallest selfie drone.

Justin Jaffe Managing editor
Justin Jaffe is the Managing Editor for CNET Money. He has more than 20 years of experience publishing books, articles and research on finance and technology for Wired, IDC and others. He is the coauthor of Uninvested (Random House, 2015), which reveals how financial services companies take advantage of customers -- and how to protect yourself. He graduated from Skidmore College with a B.A. in English Literature, spent 10 years in San Francisco and now lives in Portland, Maine.
Expertise Credit cards | Loans | Banking | Mortgages | Taxes | Cryptocurrency | Insurance | Investing Credentials
  • Coauthor of Uninvested (Random House, 2015)
Joshua Goldman Managing Editor / Advice
Managing Editor Josh Goldman is a laptop expert and has been writing about and reviewing them since built-in Wi-Fi was an optional feature. He also covers almost anything connected to a PC, including keyboards, mice, USB-C docks and PC gaming accessories. In addition, he writes about cameras, including action cams and drones. And while he doesn't consider himself a gamer, he spends entirely too much time playing them.
Expertise Laptops, desktops and computer and PC gaming accessories including keyboards, mice and controllers, cameras, action cameras and drones Credentials
  • More than two decades experience writing about PCs and accessories, and 15 years writing about cameras of all kinds.
Justin Jaffe
Joshua Goldman
2 min read
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ZeroZero

ZeroZero, aka Zero Zero Robotics, is back with the next version of its intelligent flying camera. The Hover 2 drone, which uses advanced AI to fly autonomously, features an upgraded Snapdragon processor and a new pop-up radar system to help it track subjects and avoid obstacles. And it still folds up into a compact package. 

The Kickstarter campaign for the Hover 2, which launched today, met its $100,000 goal before 8 a.m. PT.  ZeroZero plans to ship the finished product in March 2019.

Zero Zero Robotics Hover Camera (pictures)

See all photos

The original Hover Camera was impressive for its fold-up design and intelligent subject-tracking capabilities, which were advanced when it was announced in April 2016. The Hover 2 builds on that with new AI and an optical radar system that allows it to track a subject from the front, back or sides and avoid obstacles on all sides. 

Here are the basic specs:

  • 4K video 
  • 12-megapixel photos (HDR, raw and JPEG)
  • 2-axis gimbal plus electronic image stabilization
  • Control range up to 3.1 miles (5 km)
  • Flight time up to 23 minutes
  • 360-degree obstacle avoidance

The first Hover relied on your phone to control it, but this time around the company is offering two controller options in addition to your mobile device. The BlastOff controller pairs with your phone to give you a view from the drone's camera while you the Hover 2 with traditional stick controls from up to 3.1 miles (5 km) away.  Then there's the Palm Pilot, a one-handed controller with a small LCD to let you see what the camera sees. 

Watch this: The flying selfie camera that follows you everywhere (and won't get pushed around)

Packages start at $399 with the campaign ending on Dec. 29 and, again, it's already met its goal. (That converts to about £310 or  AU$555, and the project says it ships anywhere in the world.) ZeroZero delivered the original Hover on time, though that doesn't necessarily mean things will go as smoothly this time around. 

As always, please note that CNET's reporting on crowdfunding campaigns is not an endorsement of the project or its creators. Before contributing to any campaign, read the crowdfunding site's policies -- in this case, Kickstarter -- to find out your rights (and refund policies, or the lack thereof) before and after a campaign ends.