Imagine in the near future, a swarm of tiny drones patrolling the skies across the country. These drones are not being flown by any pilot and are entirely autonomous, carrying out their directives coded into them during manufacturing — surveil, record, follow, and even predict your next move. Sounds like something out of a dystopian Sci-Fi flick, right? Well, there is no need to imagine this scenario or to watch it in a movie.
It is already here.
Adam Bry and Abraham Bachrach, the CEO and CTO, respectively at a company called Skydio have helped usher in this new reality. The due started together at MIT before moving on to Google and working on Project Wing Google.
After moving on from building self-flying aircraft at Google, the duo founded Skydio and has been giving their autonomous drones to police departments ever since — for free.
“We’re solving a lot of the core problems that are needed to make drones trustworthy and able to fly themselves,” Bry told Forbes in an interview this week. “Autonomy—that core capability of giving a drone the skills of an expert pilot built in, in the software and the hardware—that’s really what we’re all about as a company.”
According to Forbes, Skydio “claims to be shipping the most advanced AI-powered drone ever built: a quadcopter that costs as little as $1,000, which can latch on to targets and follow them, dodging all sorts of obstacles and capturing everything on high-quality video. Skydio claims that its software can even predict a target’s next move, be that target a pedestrian or a car.”
Read more: Google Veterans Team Up With Government to Fill the Sky with AI Drones That Predict Your Behavior