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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Altitude Angel overhauls UK drone flight making plans app Drone Lend a hand

United Kingdom-based drone pilots most probably spotted a significant replace to their iOS and Android gadgets this week in the event that they already had Altitude Angel’s Drone Lend a hand flight making plans app obtain. And in the event that they didn’t have already got it downloaded, now would possibly in spite of everything me the time to do it.

Altitude Angel, which is founded in Studying, United Kingdom and gives a spread of airspace control information and products and services for drone producers, builders and airspace stakeholders introduced this month plans to consolidate all of its current apps into one, unmarried, Drone Lend a hand app. It’s a transfer that brings app construction again in-house and can — in principle — place the app to be larger and higher than ever.

This week, the corporate relaunched its Drone Lend a hand flight making plans app with a sequence of options set to improve the person enjoy and so as to add a extra tough set of industry-ready flight making plans gear. Some of the new enhancements comprises a right away connection to Altitude Angel’s UTM platform, providing ‘one-tap flight authorizations at hooked up airports and amenities no longer simply inside of the United Kingdom, however international. 

And now that it’s being situated as Altitude Angel’s flagship (and handiest) app, it’ll function crucial preliminary gateway to a complete host of U-Area products and services introduced by means of Altitude Angel and operated by means of its consumers. Over the approaching months, this new Drone Lend a hand will substitute the entire corporate’s current apps.

Drone Assist App Altitude Angel
A view of the newly-relaunched Drone Lend a hand app from Altitude Angel. Photograph courtesy of Altitude Angel.

The brand new model of Drone Lend a hand, started rolling out this week on each iOS and Android, and the corporate stated it considers this to be essentially the most in depth replace because the app used to be first introduced in 2016. Altitude Angel says the updates make the app extra user-friendly and intuitive for amateur pilots, while offering a number of business-critical products and services for extra skilled {and professional} operators. Some of the updates within the new Drone Lend a hand app:

  • Enhanced built-in flight making plans.
  • Complicated flight plan drawing gear.
  • Stepped forward approval products and services together with the power to make use of the app to request get admission to to fly digitally in airspace corresponding to an airport FRZ, or land with get admission to restrictions.
  • New map layers together with satellite tv for pc view.
  • Enhanced airspace filter out controls.
  • Refreshed person enjoy and person interface.

Briefly, be expecting enhanced flight making plans options throughout. As an example, Drone Lend a hand now lets in customers to devise their flight, detailing precisely the place they’ll be flying the use of the complex drawing gear by the use of both polygons or waypoints. They may be able to then post the flight plan to the app which is displayed no longer handiest at the app for all to peer, however throughout all of Altitude Angel’s UTM platforms, together with the ones utilized by airports and GA pilots – making different airspace customers (despite the fact that they’re no longer Altitude Angel consumers) acutely aware of their presence.

Along with enhanced built-in flight making plans & drawing gear, Drone Lend a hand additionally comprises new ‘pilot profiles’ and plane control, which supplies customers having the ability to log drone operator profiles, hours flown, and airframe hours used.  The ones options may just lend a hand skilled drone operators higher set up operations and airframe carrier durations.

Should you actually wish to geek out about what’s within the new Drone Lend a hand app, Sean Hickey of the Geeksvana YouTube channel put in combination a 10-minute video explaining all of it:

What’s Drone Lend a hand like nowadays?

Generally, Drone Lend a hand is regarded as the highest flight making plans app for pro and leisure pilots inside of the United Kingdom. However that doesn’t imply it’s an excellent app. It’s been a little bit — as Hickey calls it — “creaky.” In truth, the present Drone Lend a hand UK app has a coarse 3.7 out of five stars at the Google Play retailer, and an much more brutal 2.3 out of five stars at the Apple App retailer, all throughout masses of evaluations.

Lately, it sort of feels as even though the app has attainable however simply doesn’t execute. As one reviewer put it, “the street to hell is paved with just right intentions.” Different readers cite that it’s laborious to even simply login and get setup and complicated buttons while you’re in.

With the brand new Drone Lend a hand app, that would possibly alternate. Be expecting it to consolidate options that had existed in what used to be in the past a small circle of relatives of apps.

As an example, Altitude Angel additionally had two different apps, FlySafe and Dad or mum. Dad or mum used to be a unfastened app that used your location to show within sight no-fly zones and flooring hazards (in addition to the ones in a rising selection of international locations around the globe). Coverdrone FlySafe used to be a spouse utility for current consumers of Altitude Angel-partner Coverdrone to offer rapid get admission to to very important drone protection information while at the transfer.

Forward of this week’s new rollout, Altitude Angel stated it have been operating a beta trying out program with greater than 400 lively members who supplied comments which used to be included into the app’s design and construct.

And although the app were given a mega replace this week, the corporate says this week’s replace is handiest the primary in a sequence of deliberate improvements and new options within the instant pipeline.

What’s Altitude Angel?

Drone Lend a hand is now the flagship app of Altitude Angel, which used to be based in 2014 and builds UTM (Unified Site visitors Control) instrument, designed to improve drone pilots as they perform or expand UTM/U-Area answers, permitting them to briefly combine tough information and products and services with minimal effort.

Altitude Angel additionally has an open developer platform.

Altitude Angel may be main a consortium of companies to construct and expand 165 miles (265km) of ‘drone superhighways’ connecting airspace above Studying, Oxford, Milton Keynes, Cambridge, Coventry, and Rugby over the following two years. That Skyway superhighway community mission, which used to be introduced in March 2022, makes use of Altitude Angel’s patented ARROW era. That’s very similar to the well-known drone hall in New York, even though this one higher democratizes BVLOS drone operations. Altitude Angel says that any drone corporate — so long as it completes a sequence of fundamental technical integrations (which don’t in fact even require specialist {hardware} on-board the drone, besides) — is supported.

And in the long run, Altitude Angel says it intends to make its drone superhighway era to be had for any group, airport, the city, or town in search of to determine their very own drone superhighways by the use of a licensing settlement. 

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