We currently know DJI as one of the world's leading drone companies. Recently, DJI has released consumer products such as Osmo Pocket and Osmo Action, but its latest product is called RoboMaster S1.
For those who do not know, DJI is a Chinese company that hosts RoboMaster in Shenzhen, China. This is one of the biggest robotics competitions in the world and where DJI was inspired to create their latest product.
RoboMaster S1 is an educational robot designed to help people learn by doing. This new DJI tool allows users to learn from the ability to build and program S1. In addition to the learning aspect, this robot was also built to fight, with omni-directional movement, target shooting and a FPV driving experience, users can fight against each other as they would in the actual competition in Shenzhen.
At first, I looked at this new product and thought it was silly. After thinking a little more, I realized that it had potential to be very useful for educational purposes in its major markets, the US and China. With regard to the engineering and construction of these devices, I think DJI is providing a solution to attract more people interested in robotics technology up front.
For a drone user like me, this product does not make much sense. However, if I wanted to learn and understand some of the technologies, S1 could help provide some of the basics.
Is this product for everyone?
Absolutely not. I did not even expect DJI to release a product like this. To me, it looks more like a wildcard, but also another way to expand your market. Being that there are no other educational tools made with precision and quality of construction of the DJI, I really think this could be a huge success for the introduction of engineering opportunities for a new generation.
Games with friends
I was able to get some hands on time with RoboMaster S1 to see how it works. I even started running and playing against other people. The game allows you to record infrared beams in others to reduce health (HP), and the cool part of it is that you see them onscreen in a kind of augmented reality. S1 also fires pellets in the same way as in RoboMasters. You can watch the video to learn a bit more about the competition.
Programming / Code
For people who want to learn about programming robotics and artificial intelligence, the S1 offers a great place to start. As technology becomes more and more sophisticated, we will have to adapt new ways of learning about it, which is really where this new product comes into play. Advanced encoders can enter and program S1, but the main application is to educate people who are just getting started. With a range of projects ranging from beginner to expert level, Robo Academy offers video courses and guides that can teach people at any level.
I'm going to say that for me, this has to be the most exclusive product launch DJI ever had. However, in a way, it makes sense to see a major technology company in China launch a programmable robot for educational purposes. What are your thoughts on RoboMaster S1? Can you see this being a hit for DJI?