Center for Strategic Communication

Today’s personal drones have benefited from the same advances in technology that have made the iPhone so powerful.

Flying Smartphone

Less is More

It takes three kinds of sensors—each recording data in three dimensions—to gauge an aircraft’s orientation. In the past seven years, the number of components needed to do this has shrunk from six chips costing around $60 to a single $17 chip.

Flying Smartphone Chart

Sensor Chart Source: Invensense; Illustrations by Gus Wezerek