Get an intro to aerial photography on the cheap with Birdie, the throwable parachute for your GoPro
posted Friday, April 15, 2016 at 7:59 AM EDT
Want to get an introduction to aerial photography, but don't feel like spending hundreds of dollars for a camera-equipped drone or a throwable camera like the Bounce Explorer, Squito or Panono? A new crowdfunding campaign over on IndieGoGo promises just that, and comes with a pricetag of just US$35.
Of course, there's a little more to the story. You will need to supply your own camera, but since the badminton shuttlecock-like Birdie throwable camera platform is compatible with GoPro's popular Hero 3 and 4 cameras, there's a good chance you already own one. And not only is the Birdie very affordable, it also couldn't be much easier to use. Simply set your GoPro to film video or shoot photos at a short interval, then attach it in its waterproof housing to the plastic-and-foam base, clip on the Birdie's arms -- each of which is permanently attached to a single band of parachute fabric -- and throw it up in the air.
The fabric band serves both to slow the camera's descent like a parachute, and to orient the Birdie so that the GoPro's lens points directly downwards. And since the GoPro will be in its underwater housing, while Birdie itself is simply plastic, foam and fabric, the combination is safe to use around water as well. Even if the camera ends up in the water, it will float at the surface for easy retrieval. And if you can't catch it as it lands, the foam base and waterproof housing together protect the camera itself from damage. (The reduced rate of descent and foam will also help ensure it won't hurt too much if it lands on you!)
All things considered, Birdie looks to be a fun little accessory for your GoPro Hero3 or Hero4, and at a very affordable pricetag. (And if you have some friends who want one, you can potentially lower the pricetag even further to just US$27 apiece by buying in bulk.) Best of all, you won't have to wait too terribly long, as the device's Uruguayan creators note that development was already completed last January, with production slated to start next month and all deliveries to be completed by August 2016.
And with a month left on the campaign, almost half of the campaign's fundraising goal has already been reached. Although you should presumably still receive your Birdie regardless, as the campaign is using a flexible goal which means that all funds will be disbursed regardless of whether the stated goal is reached or not.
More info can be found on the Birdie IndieGoGo campaign page.