As you may have heard, Skyward, Verizon, and Parrot are partnering up to bring the first off-the-shelf 4G LTE connected drone solution to the United States. This centers around Parrot’s ANAFI Ai, a brand new enterprise-grade compact drone with 4G LTE connectivity exclusively on the Verizon network for the US. And today this connectivity is provided to Skyward subscribers at no additional cost through the Skyward Connected Drone Solution.

So what does this mean for you? Why is Skyward so excited about Parrot ANAFI Ai? What features make this drone uniquely useful to professionals?

The first drone powered by Verizon 4G LTE

It starts with 4G LTE connectivity on Verizon, America’s most awarded wireless network. 4G LTE networks bring a high level of reliability and trust as millions of businesses and consumers have thoroughly stress-tested these networks over the years. We already know we can rely on them to help us communicate, navigate, and live our lives.

Connected drones are able to tap into this same network — with its high reliability and breadth of coverage — to give a pilot command and control capabilities in most areas across the country. This enables faster time to insight, redundant command and control, and even drone flights beyond visual line of sight (currently permitted in the United States with a waiver from the FAA).

Parrot ANAFI Ai is designed to take advantage of these benefits. While most drones today are only controlled over an unlicensed radio frequency (RF) link such as Wi-Fi, Parrot ANAFI Ai also features a 4G LTE connection. This will be activated through Skyward on the Verizon network — and connectivity is included at no additional cost to Skyward subscribers with a paid account or free trial.

So what does Verizon 4G LTE connectivity enable for Parrot ANAFI Ai users? 

To start, 4G LTE connectivity provides a seamless backup connection to the flight controller in case of interference or interruption. It enables precise, secure control at any distance, so long as the drone and controller are in range of cell towers. Today, drone flights beyond visual line of sight (BVLOS) require a waiver from the FAA that can be difficult to obtain, but Parrot ANAFI Ai aims to pave the way toward making this type of operation routine.

In the meantime, Parrot ANAFI Ai may also be a good candidate for an easier-to-get extended visual line of sight (EVLOS) waiver, which allows long distance flights with a string of visual observers. EVLOS allows long range operations today, while building up the operational expertise and experience that will facilitate true BVLOS operations in the future.

4G LTE connectivity also enables other capabilities such as near real-time data transfer. This creates new use cases, like mid-flight data transfer to PIX4Dcloud for rapid data processing — and it opens the door to many other possibilities.

Want to learn more about cellular-connected drone operations and how drones will benefit from connecting to Verizon’s wireless network? Download Skyward’s new white paper, Next Gen Drone Ops: Connecting Drones to the Verizon Network.

Enterprise-grade security and privacy

Parrot is committed to protecting data and privacy for its users. Whether users are piloting Parrot drones to respond to emergencies, inspect critical infrastructure, or just fly everyday missions, Parrot believes securing data is a top priority. By default, Parrot does not collect any data without the user’s consent.

Parrot ANAFI Ai is no exception — it integrates cybersecurity and privacy by design. Enterprise-grade security protects hardware and data at every stage. This includes the embedded Wisekey Secure Element, which is NIST FIPS 140-2 Level 3 compliant and Common Criteria EAL5+ certified. The Secure Element stores and protects sensitive information, performs cryptographic operations, and secures the 4G LTE link between the drone and the user’s device.

Parrot ANAFI Ai security also includes:

  • Secure pairing and strong authentication for 4G LTE
  • Secure initialization and update
  • Digitally signed images

Ready for work and capable for the job

Parrot ANAFI Ai is a professional drone built for work, yet it packs these capabilities into a compact airframe that weighs less than two pounds. It includes enterprise features such as:

  • Verizon 4G LTE connectivity
  • A uniquely designed omni-directional obstacle avoidance system
  • 48 MP imaging accuracy
  • 4K 60fps smooth videos
  • Up to 32 minutes of flight time

Parrot ANAFI Ai is designed to make complex missions simpler, safer, and quicker. It’s ready to go to work in fields such as:

With powerful imaging, long range control over Verizon 4G LTE, and strong software compatibility, Parrot ANAFI Ai is capable for today’s missions, and ready for the new jobs of tomorrow.

Parrot ANAFI Ai is available soon in 2021

Want to reserve your Parrot ANAFI Ai? Visit skyward.io/parrot-anafi-ai/ to let us know you’re interested.

Preview Parrot ANAFI Ai on Skyward