The Extreme Tech Challenge 2017 (XTC) completed this past week with the three finalists competing for the grand prize at Sir Richard Branson’s Necker Island in the Caribbean (no word if former President Obama was in the audience). Calling it a “photo-finish”, Vantage Robotics was named the winner of Extreme Tech Challenge 2017.
Vantage Robotics has produced the Drone you really want. While there are hundreds, if not thousands, of drones in the market many of them fall short of expectations. Vantage Robotics and their “Snap” drone isn’t cheap (currently at $895/each) but it nails it by providing everything you can want in a consumer level product – the best flying camera available. Snap easily fits into your backpack, launches in minutes and then takes “silky-smooth” images and video with great flying time (20 minutes), speed (30MPH) and all the bells and whistles you expect. Even better, the team creating the product actually has the horsepower to deliver on the features. Now they have Bransons’ seal of approval so expect to see the Vantage Robotics online and in stores everywhere soon.
Founded by Joe van Niekerk and Tobin Fisher three years ago, Vantage Robotics funded their company in part with a pre-sale campaign which is ongoing (at the discounted price). Delivery is said to be coming in “early 2017”. They also have the backing of some interesting angel investors. Fisher said they were honored to participate in the XTC competition;
“..we feel incredibly grateful to get this level of recognition for our solution from such an amazing group of judges. Thank you to Bill Tai, Sir Richard Branson, the judges, XTC, and everyone else who believed in us along the way.”
Branson commented on Vantage Robotics;
“There’s fantastic intensity around the Vantage Robotics team, the judges thought it was wonderful the way they have driven towards simplicity. I personally think the market is very large and I just love the product…and the fact that it’s not going to cut your head off.”
Second place runner up was Cresilon, a plant-based hemostatic gel that accelerates the natural blood-clotting process. Third place went to ReDeTec. It is the producer of a desktop filament extruder and recycling unit for 3D printers.
XTC is presented by MaiTai Global, described as a “vanguard collective of the world’s leading entrepreneurs, creators, and athletes”.