Ed Note: This is part of our "In The Sandbox" series, where we invite teens to test and review connected toys, giving their perspective of what's fun to them—and what works.
In The Sandbox: Aerix Vidius Drone
Bigger is certainly not better with the new Aerix Vidius drone. Despite fitting in the palm of your hand, this drone can soar to high heights and put you in the driver's seat with its startlingly clear first person view camera—a camera that can take photos and videos from up above. You can control the drone with the small battery powered controller from the box or from an app on your Android or Apple device.
The Aerix Vidius drone and I got off to a bit of a rough start. I wasn't sure how the flying toy worked, so while experimenting with the controller, I flew the drone right into my hair. That clogged up one of the propellers. Not only did this hurt, but the mishap made the propeller more stiff and harder to fly, so I had to replace it.
This isn't to say that the drone wasn't fun. The Aerix Vidius was really cool to fly around the house and experiment with landing on different surfaces.
Don't fly the Vidius drone too close to you if you have long hair.
But fixing the propeller is when I encountered my next problem. The propellers were really hard to take off. I couldn't manage to pry them off the machine, even when I used tweezers. I thought that the drone was broken, so I visited the Q&A section of the Vidius drone website. Luckily, they offer a person online to answer questions, so I sent my problem to a very friendly and helpful person named Kyle. He told me that sometimes the propellers got stuck and I should just keep pulling. I thanked him and decided to enlist the help of my dad.
My dad, much stronger than myself, managed to replace that one propeller. So we then set off outside to play in an environment with more space. It was there when I also downloaded the app so I could see through the FPV—or first person view—camera.
You can control the Vidius drone from your iPad and smartphone.
Up, up and away
That camera was incredible! I could send the drone up and spin it around to get a view of the entire park. I could also take photos and videos from the drone. Plus if the drone crash-landed into bushes, I could use the camera's point of view to find where it was.
The Aerix Vidius could also go really high. But I didn't send the drone too far up because I had trouble getting soft landings, and worried it would break if dropped from so high.
We also brought a portable charger because the drone only has five to seven minutes of flying time. Although I understand that a drone that does so much would need a lot of charge, it seemed pretty useless to go all the way to the park for five minutes of fun. In the future, I would suggest bringing a book or something to do while the drone charged. Even with a portable charger, the fun is over pretty fast. Plus, after a few minutes the app begins to disconnect and the drone doesn't get very high.
Still, those seven minutes are worth going to the park for flying the drone. After the hiccup with the propeller, I began to understand how Aerix Vidius moved and got better at controlling the drone. My dad had fun too, so that was a nice way to spend time with him outside. Ultimately, the Aerix Vidius drone is a tiny flying machine with loads of fun.
Want another viewpoint? Check out GearBrain's drone reviewer for his take on the Vidius.
Pros: Small-sized drone you control from your phone, plus you can fly this pretty high in the air.
Cons: Propellers are hard to take off, only flies for five to seven minutes before recharging.
-Harper Learmonth is a GearBrain teen reviewer, who last wrote about AuraBox for our "In The Sandbox" series.