Following the release of DJI Mavic Air 2, a lot of drone lovers have started carrying rumors about the upcoming DJI Mavic 3 release date. That’s no surprise because, as with the smartphone industry, the drone industry has its technology hype. In this article, we will be discussing everything about the upcoming DJI Mavic 3, including its release date, price, specs, and rumors.
DJI Mavic 3 Release Date
If the rumor is anything to go by, we should expect the DJI Mavic 3 to drop by the end of this year. But when exactly should we be expecting it?
Folks at DroneXL have learned from reliable sources that DJI is planning to unveil the Mavic 3 on September 26th. The unveiling event would take place at 10 AM EST. Notably, September 26th falls on a Saturday, which is unusual for DJI. But considering it will be an online-only event, DJI could get a bigger audience to attend the launch event on a Saturday.
Meanwhile, a user on Mavic pilots forum has made a different suggestion. He wrote:
“There’s no expected release date. Based on the longevity of the Mavic Pro, I’m guessing we won’t see a Mavic 3 until at least 2021.”
According to DroneDJ, the Chinese company was planning to release three drones in 2020 – the Mavic Air 2, the Mavic 3, and the Matrice 300.
Sources told DroneDJ that the company has decided not to release the DJI Mavic 3 in 2020 because the older Mavic 2 continues to fly off the shelves. It makes little sense for a company to bring a successor when the older model is still selling like hotcakes. However, the company can change its plans anytime depending on the market competition.
Mavic 3 release linked to the US Presidential election?
A high-profile and reliable source told DroneXL that the DJI Mavic 3 has been delayed “until Trump is gone.” The US President has threatened to ban TikTok if the Chinese company doesn’t reach a deal with Microsoft by September 15th. Trump has also attacked several other Chinese companies. DJI probably plans to avoid the limelight while the Trump Administration is targeting Chinese companies.
If the report is true, DJI is assuming that Trump will lose the election and leave the White House in January 2021.
After DroneXL’s report, the Chinese company said in a statement, “There have been no plans to launch such a product this summer, and we do most certainly not schedule or reschedule product releases according to political events, in the US or elsewhere in the world.”
DJI has uploaded a set of fresh patent documents to the National Intellectual Property Administration of China. The documents include an image showing the drone with an updated battery, a larger camera, and other details. The patent application was originally submitted in January and published on May 28th. The image has been made public only recently.
The patent image suggests the camera will have a boxier design. The gimbal arms will be sharper than the previous generation. The power button has a battery indicator light forming a ring around the button. Right behind the power button are four dots that look like battery power indicator lights.
The drone appears to have an upward-facing obstacle avoidance sensor. It would protect the Mavic 3 from crashing into something above it such as trees or birds. It also has a sensor on the back. However, companies like DJI file many patents before the actual launch of the products, so it’s not really confirmed if this would be the final and official design.
DJI could ship the Mavic 3 drone with a Smart Controller, making it more lucrative for professional users such as photographers. The company added a Smart Controller with the Mavic 2 series, but DJI continues to sell the low-tech controller at an affordable price. Opting for the Smart Controller bundle increased the price of the Mavic 2 Pro by a staggering $450.
The Smart Controller would also make the DJI Mavic 3 more expensive. Photographers, videographers, and other professional content creators have been upgrading to the Smart Controller, indicating that they are willing to pay extra for better features. However, bundling the Smart Controller with the Mavic 3 could increase its price by $450 or more. DJI could choose to keep selling the regular controller.
DJI Mavic 3 Specs
According to a leak on Twitter by OsitaLV, there seems to be a new drone coming up soon. However, it looks like the new drone is not up to the standard of the account user according to the caption: “Mavic 3, they need to do better than this.”
From the leak, we can see a sketch of the upcoming DJI Mavic 3 and some of its specs. Let’s take a look at them below:
- ADS-B receivers
- 10 visual-sensing cameras
- ActiveTrack 3.0
- Vision Sync 3.0
- Ocusync 3.0
- Hasselblad camera shooting 4K60 (HDR)
Although the tweet dated as far as October last year, there seems to be another one early this year. In it, OsitaLV tweeted that:
“Rumor says Mavic 3 is under field test, but I’m interested in the appearance. Could be a false alarm, don’t be too serious. They can keep the camera and upgrade the body.”
According to the rumor mill, the Mavic 3 would offer video quality on par with the Phantom 4 Pro. We should also expect a longer flight time and range to compete with rival drones such as Autel EVO II, which has a flight time of 40 minutes.
Some industry experts speculate that the launch of Autel EVO II at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year has forced DJI to go back to the drawing board to improve the Mavic 3 specs. The Autel EVO II has an impressive 48MP camera capable of recording 8K videos, 5.5 miles of range, and 40 minutes of flight time.
Another competitor Skydio 2, priced at $999, brings superior obstacle avoidance. DJI would want to ensure that the Mavic 3 is capable of competing with Skydio 2 and Autel EVO II before bringing it to the market.
DJI Mavic 3 will capture 8k 60 fps and 4k 240 fps video?
The new CV5 processor by chipmaker Ambarella can support video at up to 8k 60 fps and 4k 240 fps. This implies that Mavic 3 can have the ability to shoot in 8k to compete with the EVO 2.
But the Mavic 3 has already been under development phases, so DJI must have finalized the chip powering the camera. Moreover, it takes almost a year for products to use the new chips, according to Ambarella’s VP of marketing and business development, Christopher Day. These two factors indicate that we will not be seeing the CV5 chip in the Mavic 3.
DJI bringing its own chip?
The company is reportedly working to create its own self-driving technology. DJI might be coming up with its own processor to avoid relying on other companies to support the features.
Mavic 3 to get a LiDAR scanner?
Apple’s iPad Pro and the latest iPhone sports a LiDAR (light detection and ranging) scanner. Twitter tipster OsitaLV recently shared a hand drawing of what looks like a DJI Mavic 3. It sports a LiDAR scanner at the bottom. There is no official confirmation on this. But DJI could add the scanner to its Mavic line to take drone photography to a whole new level.
Nowadays, even iPhone has a LiDAR, DJI can do the same. pic.twitter.com/HdRg7uSoiN
— OsitaLV (@OsitaLV) November 2, 2020
The LiDAR scanner measures distance between the objects by tracking the time taken by light pulse to bounce back from various objects and return to the sensor. It enables distance measuring, 3D mapping, and much more. DJI has consistently tried to improve the photography and videography experiences. So LiDAR is not out of the realm of possibility. LiDAR sensors are already used in large commercial drones.
However, OsitaLV’s hand drawing shows the LiDAR scanner facing the bottom, which would restrict its usefulness. It can’t be used for obstacle avoidance. Of course, we don’t know if or how DJI would go about it. The Chinese company could implement it in a different way. But given the supply chain disruptions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, it could be difficult for the company to secure the sensors in large quantities.
What Drone users want to see
Should the Mavic 3 include a Smart Controller?
Online polls suggest that 13% of people want Mavic 3 to come with a Smart Controller and 70% of people said the price should be the same with the Smart Controller being added. 16% of voters don’t want the Smart Controller with the Mavic 3.
Mavic 3 to use the DJI Fly app?
In this poll, 10% of people voted for the Mavic 3 to use a new app while 43% want the Mavic 3 to use the old DJI GO 4 app. Whereas, 48% voted for it to use the newer DJI Fly app.
The Mavic 3 Fly more combo should include?
Results show that the most demanded thing 33% of people want from the fly more combo is extra batteries. 22% want the fly more combo to include a car charger. Whereas, 16% wanted to add ND filters. Then the hard-shell case at 15%. And 12% of users voted for a multi-battery charger.
Mavic 3 Air in 2022
According to YouTuber, droneXfactor, there won’t be a Mavic 3 Pro releasing in 2021. However, he believes that Mavic Air 3 will likely launch in the year 2022 with the following specs:
- 1” sensor
- 4K 60 fps
- 45 min flight time
- Around 500 grams
- 6K photos
- Fly more combo at $1350
- Built-in anti-collision lights for night flying
DJI Mavic 3 Price
There is no official word on how much the upcoming drone DJI Mavic 3 would cost, but we can make some pretty good guesses. We should expect something close to the DJI Mavic Air 2 price. The Mavic Air 2 starts at $799 and goes up to $988 if you opt for the Fly More Combo. For the exact price, we have to wait for the announcement from the DJI.
A Quick Review Of Mavic Air 2
DJI has already launched the Mavic Air 2. It comes with a lot of interesting features, including having a 42 mph flight speed and 34-minute flight time. Apart from that, its prices are fair enough for the newly released drone.
Here are some of the amazing features of the DJI Mavic Air 2:
- Sensor: 12MP 1/2-inch CMOS
- Camera focal length: 24mm (full-frame equivalent)
- Aperture: Fixed f/2.8
- Video: 4K MP4 & MOV, D-Cinelike, up to 240 fps
- Gimbal: 3-axis
- Weight: 570g
- Flight time: Up to 35 mins
As with our earlier post, the newly released DJI Mavic Air 2 comes with a design that looks like DJI Mavic 2 Pro. Now, we can see a lot of improvements in different areas, including flight time, image & video quality, and speed.
The new DJI Mavic Air 2 is now up on the DJI official store for pre-order. For the price tags, the mid-range drone sells at a starting price of $799. Also, a Fly More bundle is available at a price of $988/ £949/ Au$1899.
What do you expect DJI to include in the Mavic 3 series? Let us know your views in the comments below.
This article was updated with the latest information on March 3, 2021.