Tiny Hong Kong-made drones to put virtual reality in palms of users’ hands

Interactive products and experiences poised to feature at annual computer fair

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 09 August, 2016, 5:47pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 09 August, 2016, 10:25pm

A Hong Kong-made 6cm-long drone, wireless skipping rope and educational DIY robots are poised to take the virtual spotlight at the city’s 14th Computer and Communications Festival later this month.

This year’s festival is to encompass more than 450 booths from 200 exhibitors from August 19 to 22 at the Convention and Exhibition Centre in Wan Chai.

Local companies said they were eager to promote the smallest virtual reality drone made in the city, measuring a mere 6cm long and capable of flying for as long as six minutes.

Ani-Com & Games Hong Kong: virtual reality takes centre stage

Kenes Cheung Ka-yi, co-founder of Playable Creation which made the drone, said she wanted the public to “get engaged in VR technology and know that there are local companies that excel at it”.

The remote-controlled drone can deliver footage from up to 30 metres away, and its user can put on 3D VR glasses paired with the product to get immersed in a virtual world.

Lighter and smaller than a normal-sized drone, which commonly measures more than 30cm by 10cm, the tiny drone shoots video with a 300,000-pixel camera and at 480p video quality.

Carrie Mak of Millenium Pacific Concept, echoed the call to raise the profile of local products. Her company’s VR wireless skipping rope can record a player’s average speed and number of calories burned.

“It’s suitable for indoor and outdoor activities and will sync with the app on your phone,” she said. “We hope to use the festival as a platform for brand building.”

The event also seeks to attract students’ interest through products like mBot Rangers, an educational robot that youngsters can build themselves with hundreds of electronic components.

Sandra Chan Sin-kwan of Everbest likened the company’s product to “a Lego robot but with more functional components to develop students’ programming skills and logical thinking”.

The robots have been used in more than 170 schools across the city to cultivate STEM education, a curriculum focusing on science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

The four-day event is to include an e-sports competition in which hundreds of players can compete in various games. Last year’s festival attracted more than 800,000 visitors.