Snap is launching a flying camera, the company announced Thursday during its annual partners summit.
The camera, called Pixy, is a “pocket sized” device with no controller. Instead, users tap a button to send Pixy into one of four preset flightpaths. The device floats, orbits, or follows a few feet above the user to capture photos and videos, then lands in the user’s palm.
Snap is billing Pixy as a companion to its flagship app, Snapchat. The company said videos and pictures from flights automatically transfer into the user’s Snapchat Memories. Users can edit the pictures and share to any other platform, it said. The Pixy stores up to 100 videos or 1,000 photos.
It is available as of Thursday in the U.S. and France for $229.99. The base flight pack includes the Pixy camera, bumper and carrying strap, a charging cable and a rechargeable battery. Additional batteries are available for $19.99 and a dual battery charger is available for $49.99, the company said. The camera can make five to eight flights using its default flight modes on each battery recharge.
Snap has ventured into gadgets in the past with Spectacles, its $380 augmented reality glasses, which can superimpose computer-generated images over the user’s field of vision. The company has indicated it is committed to hardware in the long term, which could open up a new revenue stream aside from its advertising business. However, the company said in its last earnings report that revenue from hardware today is “not material.”
The company also announced several augmented-reality features and developer updates. Snapchat now reaches 600 million monthly active users and more than 330 million daily active users, it said.