Sony Enters Drone Market with Upcoming Airpeak Brand

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Sony just gave us our first look at its recently announced Airpeak drone, which teased us last November in a promotional video. While that video generated a lot of excitement, it answered very few questions, like, “What does it look like?,” “Which camera will it support?,” and “Who is it for?” Well, today, we got those answers and a few more. Here’s everything we know so far about the new Airpeak drone.

Sony Airpeak Drone
Sony Airpeak Drone

Alpha Support

According to Sony, the Airpeak can be equipped with an Alpha full-frame mirrorless camera. Not only that, but Sony claims it’s the smallest drone capable of supporting Alpha full-frame cameras. While that might be true, the Airpeak is by no means “small.” Based on what we saw in the video, its size is going to be much closer to a professional drone, like the DJI Inspire 2, than a hobbyist flyer, like the Mavic.

Pros Only

Though Sony didn’t explicitly say it, the Airpeak appears to be aimed at professional photographers and filmmakers. Both its build and the fact that it supports Sony’s Alpha series suggests this drone is not meant for the casual flyer. To highlight that point, Sony showcased how the Airpeak was used as a chase camera to shoot footage of Sony’s VISION-S concept car.

Made by Sony

One of the questions we had last November was whether or not the Airpeak would be a collaboration between Sony and another manufacturer or its own venture. Now we know for certain that the Airpeak is all Sony, making it the very first drone the Japanese-based manufacturer has ever produced.

When and How Much?

Although we did get some details about the Airpeak, there’s a lot we still don’t know. According to Sony, it should be available sometime this spring. As far as how much it will cost, no one knows. But keep in mind this is a professional filmmaking tool, so it will likely be priced accordingly.

Other than the details we covered, there isn’t much more we know about the Airpeak. How fast is it? How long can it fly? What kind of object tracking does it use? We don’t know, but we’re looking forward to finding out. Hopefully we’ll get some more info before the spring release date. One thing is for certain: The arrival of the Sony Airpeak means this is a very exciting time for the drone industry.

Are you looking forward to taking the Airpeak for a spin? Let us know in the Comments section, below.

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20 Comments

This is like a late Christmas present for me!  I’m a Sony Alpha user and a professional drone pilot. Combining the two is exactly what I’ve been hoping to see for I don’t know how long.

With regards to the use of the Gremsy gimbal, I think it is smart.  Why waste time reinventing the wheel?  Gremsy makes amazing products and they work with a multitude of different aircraft manufacturers/builders. I see that as a win for Sony as it leaves them time to focus on what they need to succeed, a reliable flight control system mated with an app allowing us to use the Alpha cameras to their full potential. Sign me up as an early adopter!

Hmm, I love my alpha cameras but it seems like rolling shutter will be a pretty big issue on this rig with any A7 series camera.

First thing we know is that it will be 3 times the price it should be. Instead of wasting time on this, why don't they build a new sensor to replace the 112-year-old one that is in FS5's and FS7's?

So if you look closely in the video you will see a “G” on the side of the gimbal. Sony is using a Gremsy T3 gimbal, which has been on the market for some time now. So, the AirPeak is not all Sony made. Maybe they will make their own gimbal eventually? The Gremsy works very well and seems to incorporate into the AirPeak so maybe it will be a keeper. Maybe they will buy Gremsy, a Korean company? As a DJI M600 Pro and Inspire 2 pilot/owner I’m guessing a complete 2 operator AirPeak will price out sub 10k with gimbal. I do like my DJI products and have had mostly positive experiences but definitely interested in what Sony can bring. 

Launching a rebranded/rebadged product and claiming its new a in-house product, is business as usual.
IE: Leica bedazzled a Sony camera, and put it on the market (rebadged?) for thousands of dollars more.

If you folks have to guess what will this cost? $5,000-$15,000 ?? Also can we put a different camera? Im ready for it since Sony makes great equipment.

5k+ I hope not.. For the prices you mentioned it better have FLIR and LIDAR on it.

This will be game-changing.  Sure there will be bugs to be worked out, but that's why they call it the "bleeding" edge of technology.  It'll be worth the cost because of what it will do for architectural photography and videography when paired with the a7Riv and a7Siii.  Count me in and ready to place an order. 

I made the decision to trust Sony years ago when I made the switch from Canon and I have never regretted it once. As a long time DJI customer ( Inspire 1, 2) I have run the range of emotions from amazed, frustrated, to furious with the company. Sony is stepping into a new world and I hope that they are ready as there is nothing more frustrating than having a $20,000 investment drop out of the sky. I will watch this very close because I will invest in this tool for my clients asap if Sony has built a solid product with better software than DJI and a much better support system.

I’ll buy one. Anything to get away from those fluorescent DJI colors. 

The best thing about this, is that Dji will have to do better.
Maybe they now realize we want better cameras, and not thousands of anti collision sensors, or 1min longer flight time, or 500 miles range video transmission, or size so small it can fit in your wallet, and all the rest of the nonsense they have started focusing on.

It's worthless if it doesn't have remote ID. I guess it's certainly big enough to "bolt-on" a transmitter, but that restricts some use for it too. 

A firmware update can take care of that.

You have information that it doesnt, since it worries you?

Any idea how much it will cost?  Will the controller be able to control the camera?  Even a Zoom lens?

A lot.

Hi Ron - 

Sony confirmed the Airpeak launch date that it mentioned in its first official announcement back in November 2020.

In a short statement, it said "Sony will launch a new business targeted for professional photography and video production in the spring of 2021". For worldwide readers, that means we should get more information in March or April 2021. SONY has not announced any pricing at all.

Fascinating and promising.  However, before I strap our A7 and lens onto a new drone from a non-aeronautical company I’m gong to let someone else take the test rides.  I’m very comfortable not being an early adopter with this one.  Hope it works out.  

Eager to take a look and see what Sony has brought to the game.

I would feel so much more comfortable using a non-Chinese product in place of my DJI unit, that price might be a non issue.

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