Flying A Drone With An Oculus Rift 


Controlling autonomous vehicles remotely with the use of virtual reality headsets seems like an obvious next step. Already, a few UAV companies have begun experimenting with these types of ideas by integrating Oculus Rift developer kits into their hovering quadcopters and drones. Parrot released a video on their blog showing that they developed a head-tracking system for their Bebop Drone in an effort to bring FPV flights to fruition. It looks like a lot of fun and we want to try one of these out asap!

As for technical specifications, they can be found in the YouTube description of the video embedded below. A quick glance showed that the operating system is based on Android and uses WiFi to connect the handheld tablet to the autonomous vehicle floating above. The range is a whopping 2km, giving plenty of freedom to explore. Moving one’s head swivels the attached camera giving a more immersive flying experience.

This isn’t the first example of FPV drones that we have seen. Previously, we covered an Oculus Rift + Head Tracking setup and another similar integration with a Black Armor Drone. We are bound to see virtual reality equipment used to control drones more and more as developers get their hands on cutting edge hardware like the Oculus developer kit 2 hardware which is currently shipping.


15 thoughts on “Flying A Drone With An Oculus Rift 

  1. This is what my next project is about. I am building the quadcopter now and will be buying the DK2 soon and somehow implement this. Everything is not clear yet how it will go about but I will figure it out.

      1. It is. “Retard” as used colloquially refers not one with physical mental disabilities but rather to those who willing refuse to think or learn. They retard themselves. Stop being one by nitpicking well-known general usage on the auspices of political correctness.

        Drone, on the other hand, implies some degree of autonomy. Calling RC quadcotpers drones is unfair at best, ignorant fearmongering at worst.

        RC quadcopters are just extremely advanced kites with powered propellers instead of passive nylon wings and radio instead of string. Are kites drones? Should we ban kites for the public good? After all, someone might fly one into an electric line or crash one into a small child in the park. Think of the children. The FAA needs to step in and protect the public from these terror-ifying drones.

  2. 1994 – “Hey man, that’s a cool RC plane you’re flying.”
    2014 – “It’s a Drone! RUN FOR YOU LIVES!”

    Funny thing is, I have yet to see a drone anywhere.
    I’ll accept UAV (Unmanned aerial vehicle) because yes, technically there is no one on board, even if it’s controls are ‘manned.’ But that’s simply because it helps to differentate between planes and ground based RC (remote controlled) vehicles. Of course, then you get RC boats…. doesn’t the media currently refer to them as torpedoes? If they don’t yet, they will soon.

    1. UAV is also not a great name to associate with RC vehicles, since it can also stand for “Underwater Autonomous Vehicle” or “Unmanned Autonomous Vehicle.” In either case, autonomous vehicles are definitely scarier, and more dangerous than RC ones.

  3. Drone works for me. Generic. Quadcopter means nothing to most people. Once the FAA released their verdict, you will likely need a certificate to fly this beyond line of sight. So keep the FPV in view and you’re ok. Probably a good thing, since these things can kill people. I have scars to prove it.

    1. A lot of people don’t know the difference between a UAV (drone or Unmanned Aerial Vehicle) with a First Person View system and one that is recording video without that person’s consent, so I suspect that if serious attempts to change or delay the implementation of these undesirable rule changes, they may take it as a viloation of their right to privacy, or something similar.

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