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MotionPilot: Sending usual drone controllers back to the stone age

Have a look at Innovation Time, one of EPFL's student run media, and their recent article featuring one of our trainings alumnus project: Motion Pilot. Find the full article here and their Facebook page here.

Arthur: Timothée, what is MotionPilot ?

Timothée: MotionPilot aims to revolutionize the way we interact with drones. Current remote controls have kept the same architecture developed half a century ago. The controls are unintuitive, complex and don’t provide any flight sensation. With our remote control we offer a unique flight experience in a compact, fun and intuitive product. Our product is aimed at the First Person View (FPV) drone market where people pilot drones to experience flight.

A : Your team won CTI and Start Lausanne (2016) awards and you reached the ICAN 2nd place. You are now on your way to the third stage of VentureKick. Where do you see yourselves one year from now?

T: We want to focus on our product and on our sales. In one year, I hope we’ll have sold our preproduction product and that our industrialized product is ready to enter the market.

A : You are at the moment studying at the EPFL in Microtechnics. Where and how does your team get the additional missing skills and knowledge to build what you want?

T: There is a lot of help around EPFL. We could get some advice from people around the campus. We also participated to the CTI entrepreneurship course (toolkit for startups) which gave us valuable insights into business.

A : We see many startups trying to expand fast with additional members from early stages, but you seem different. Do you want to master your product before scaling up?

T: We think a startup should expand only if it is an extreme necessity. For us, working with additional people would take time and slow down the development process. We’re actually making “home made” products, we work at our own flats. Working in a place where you feel comfortable and where you have all the tools you need is extremely important.

A : EPFL can be quite challenging sometimes. How difficult is it to ask a student team to spend their free time working on MotionPilot?

T: We are motivated by our project, so we see MotionPilot more as an opportunity than an additional workload. Of course, it is sometimes difficult to work on our courses and our project at the same time but we have still been able to combine both pretty well until now.

A : Is MotionPilot still running with the money from challenges? Are you planning on asking lucky investors to contribute in the near future?

T: Yes, we are. But as we will get closer to our industrialization and commercialization phase, we will need additional contributions from investors. We expect this to be at the end of the year. We plan on selling our initial preproduction unit at the end of summer 2017.

Written by Arthur Baetens for Innovation Time. Full article here.