This is what we’ve all been dreaming of since we first learned how to make paper airplanes as kids – being able to control the plane’s flight path in real time!
PowerUp 3.0 fromPowerUp Toys is a light-weight Bluetooth enabled flight control system that can be added to any homemade paper plane to convert it into a "smart" plane. Through an app on a supported smartphone, the pilot can take the plane higher or lower (With a range of about 55 meters) and bank left or right in mid-flight. According to creator Shai Goitein, a skilled pilot with a well-constructed paper plane can keep it in flight for up to 10 minutes at a time on a single charge of the battery.
PowerUp 3.0 consists of a propeller + rudder system to be placed at the tail end of the paper plane and an aerodynamically-shaped smart module at the nose end. The two are connected by a thin crash-proof carbon fiber bridge that acts as the backbone. The smart module houses a Lithium Polymer battery and Bluetooth Smart receiver. The battery can be charged using any standard micro USB interface. Those flying it outdoors and not keen on taking a laptop to the field may want to carry a separate power bank or battery charger pack to juice up the plane between flights.
The piloting app was initially available only for iPhone (4S onwards) and iPad Mini, but having achieved their stretch goal well within 10 days of starting their Kickstarter campaign, an Android version is also on the cards (4.3 onwards).
More details about the device can be found at: Poweruptoys.com and in the video embedded below.