Frederic, tell us about your background.

I completed an Engineering degree, specializing in Electronics and Telecommunications. After working for Texas Instruments, I moved onto a startup that developed Bluetooth IP. At the end of 2004, I joined Parrot as a software engineer for the Bluetooth handsfree car kits. I then evolved to project management and today I am the Program Manager.

Anafi 1.1.0-rc5

Photo shot by Frederic Pirat

Could you explain your role at Parrot?

The development process of a product never stops, even if the manufacturing and commercialization have started. Parrot’s R&D team wants to constantly improve the customer experience by adding new requested features such as Magic Dronies.

In the Core Business team to which I belong, we are in charge of the maintenance of products available on the market. We also develop innovations creating professional drone solutions. Parrot is renowned for its leisure drones; however, we are now present in the professional drone sector, addressing industries such as agriculture, architecture & construction and public safety.

The Core Business team developed Parrot Bebop-Pro Thermal and Parrot Bluegrass. Parrot Bebop-Pro Thermal is the ideal solution for heating engineers and firefighters. Whereas, Parrot Bluegrass is ideal for farmers who want to find out more about their crop health, in order to optimize the usage of fertilizer, helping them increase their yields and reduce costs.

We’re currently working with one of our subsidiaries, Pix4D on ANAFI Work. The idea is to process the images taken by ANAFI Work to create HD 2D maps and 3D models. For example, if you need to take measurements of a roof, you can fly over the house and take measurements directly on the map or model. You can also inspect any damage without having to get onto the roof.

Anafi 1.1.0-rc5

Photo shot by Frederic Pirat

What attracted you to Parrot?

In most companies, you have your tasks and you don’t really get involved in the overall execution of the project. What is great about Parrot is that you can get involved in various aspects, understanding the whole project cycle, thus gaining an overall vision of what each high-tech product entails. Several teams participate in the creation of a new project, from the very first sketches to manufacturing the final product.

When I arrived at Parrot, we were a team of fifty people. Today there’s a lot more of us, but we still have that proximity between the different teams. Teamwork is one of Parrot’s strong points.

Anafi 1.1.0-rc5

Photo shot by Frederic Pirat

Recently there’s been a huge focus on ANAFI, namely its form factor and its cutting-edge technology. Tell us more about this and why it makes ANAFI so unique?

ANAFI was a very ambitious project for Parrot. The keyword was innovation! Innovation in all areas; mechanics, aerodynamics, optics, electronics, software etc. The goal was to create a product that’s light, compact, flies for 25 minutes and can shoot footage in 4K from all directions, even low angle shots. The insect inspired design enables all these specs, providing a multitude of features unseen in a drone of this size. The foldable arms render the drone even more compact, which means you can take it absolutely everywhere.

Anafi 1.1.0-rc5

Photo shot by Frederic Pirat

What were your first impressions of ANAFI?

You don’t actually need to fly ANAFI to be impressed by it. Just seeing it and knowing what it’s capable of, is impressive in itself. Its weight of 320g is a great feat. When you see ANAFI for the first time, you’d be forgiven for thinking it’s a mockup and not the real thing. Such a lightweight quadcopter is capable of flying 31mph and taking stabilized photographs in 4K. ANAFI’s performances are remarkable.

And then the astonishing experience continues when you take the drone out into the open air and start flying it. In Sport mode, the drone is incredibly fast and after a few feet, you can no longer hear it. You can really test the drone by flying it in all directions, accelerating it, slowing it down and you’ll suddenly realize that the videos you have shot are always perfectly stable. By the end of your flight, you’re convinced that you have a new generation of drone that is reactive, discreet and capable of capturing spectacular images.

Anafi 1.1.0-rc5

Photo shot by Frederic Pirat

What are your favorite aspects/features?

I’m a huge fan of the mountains and I love being able to film summits and ridges. I took a Parrot Disco drone with me when I went hiking, but it’s not easy to carry something with wings larger than your back.

This is not the case with ANAFI. Due to its compactness, you can put it in your backpack and take it wherever you want. ANAFI is easy-to-use and thanks to the hand launch feature, you can even fly it in the narrowest of spaces.

The FreeFlight 6 feature that I use the most often is Cameraman, with which you can frame an object, building or summit to execute a smooth tracking shot. You can film a waterfall using the low angle shot for a unique rendering that only ANAFI can achieve.

Find Out More About ANAFI’s Technology

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