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(Pocket-lint) - Snap, the company that owns Snapchat, has long considered itself a "camera" company first. After all, when you open Snapchat, the first screen you see is the camera. And its smart glasses, Spectacles, are entirely about helping wearers more seamlessly create and share snaps (aka videos). Now, Snap is taking its camera expertise to the next level: It's introducing a flying camera.

What is Snap Pixy?

Simply put: Pixy is Snap's first drone. It's a small yellow UAV that can rest in the palm of your hand. In fact, it takes off and lands on your hand. It can follow you around and capture videos that are sent to Snapchat. It's tiny and light enough to fit in your pocket and uses six pre-programmed flight patterns that you can set through a dial on the top of the device.

Range

Currently, most drones are big, heavy, loud devices for professionals and early adopters. Some even require a permit to use. But Pixy is different because of how portable it is and because it has quieter propellers. It weighs just 101 grams and has a swappable battery that, when on a full charge, will get you five to eight flights that can range from roughly 10 to 20 seconds. (Not that long.) 

Note: Given the device is so light, you probably shouldn't use it in windy conditions.

Camera

The Pixy’s 12-megapixel sensor shoots up to 100 videos or 1,000 photos. Your media is stored locally on a 16GB drive. Early reviews suggest the video quality isn't great, but good enough to view on a phone.

Accessories

You can buy additional batteries for Pixy that cost $20 each. Snap also sells a portable dual-battery charger for $50 and a bumper and carryings strap.

How does Snap Pixy work?

As mentioned earlier, Pixy takes off and lands on your palm, but it uses flight patterns you set with a dial on top of the device. It can give you up to eight flights that are 20 seconds long, or it can shoot 100 videos or 1,000 photos. It follows you around and captures footage that's synced wirelessly to the Memories section of Snapchat. It doesn’t capture audio, but Snap lets you add songs it's licensed from music labels. You can share your videos directly in the app or elsewhere. Snap has Pixy-specific AR effects available, too. An auto-crop feature also lets you quickly turn horizontal footage into Snap's traditional vertical orientation.

What are Snap Pixy's tech specs?

Pixy's tech specs are listed below:

Tech specs

Size and Weight

  • Weight: 101g Including battery
  • Dimensions: 131.7mm x 106mm x 17.6mm

Flight Time

  • 5-8 flights, depending on the flight mode

Video

  • Default: 2.7k
  • Frame rate: Up to 30 FPS

Images

  • Standard: 4000 x 3000 (12MP)

Battery

  • Replaceable rechargeable lithium-ion battery
  • 80% quick charge in about 20 minutes
  • Fully recharges in about 40 minutes

Storage

  • Stores up to 100 videos or 1000 photos
  • 16GB flash storage

Connectivity

  • BLE
  • 5GHz 802.11 B, G, N, AC

Is Snap Pixy water-resistant?

No. Do not fly Pixy over water. Pixy and its accessories are not water-resistant. Snap said they should not be exposed to "rain, snow, or submerged in water".

Is Snap Pixy iPhone-only?

Nope!

Snap Pixy works with the following mobile devices:

  • iPhone 7 or later running iOS 14 or above
  • Select Android phones running 8.0 or above.

Note: You can see Pixy's compatibility guide here.

Where can you buy Snap Pixy?

  • Snap Pixy release date: 28 April 2022

Pixy is now available to buy online directly from Snap in the US and France.

How much does Snap Pixy cost?

Pixy costs $230 in the US.

Want to know more?

If you'd like to learn more, check out Snap's page for Pixy, its support hub for Pixy, and its how-to videos for Pixy.

Writing by Maggie Tillman.