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Best Tablet for the DJI Phantom Series

As a hard core Android user, it is hard to admit that the best tablet for the DJI product range does not use the Android OS.

Out with the old...

Out with the old…

Since my first P1 FC40 I have been using Android tablets almost exclusively, and with great results…until recently.

I use a variety of software depending on need.  My go-to app is Litchi which I use 95% of the time. However, I will also use the DJI Go applications and even DroneDeploy, all of which ran without issue on my trusty ASUS tablet until about 6 months ago.

Around that time DJI put out new versions of their software and the Software Development Kit (SDK) and the performance of applications went rapidly down hill.

Issues!

The first thing I noticed was issues with the live video feed freezing when the signal became weak.  I worked around it, learning how to reboot the software mid-flight and learning techniques to ensure I could always bring the bird home.  But this added time, frustration, and made life difficult when shooting on site with clients.

With later updates came issues with uploading missions from Litchi, which would often fail or only upload after I had given up, causing the bird to suddenly take off.  At a minimum, this burned precious battery time, but one time this happened as I was bringing my P4Pro back and it was under a tree!

I tried reaching out to Litchi directly to see what tablet the recommended. The result?  The only tablet they recommend is the Nvidia Shield K1 which, as far as I can tell, you cannot buy new anymore.  

Sad day

After a frustrating day of shooting and the embarrassing situation of having to re-shoot a clients project because of software issues, I finally caved in and bought an iPad Pro.

Problems Fixed

This past weekend I took the iPad to my first commercial shoot and it made a huge difference!

The apps worked as they used to.  No lag.  No issues.  Just rock solid performance.  This was the same client I had such problems at last time and I was in and out in a jiffy with much better results.

The screen brightness was excellent, and the 9.7″ size is as big as you are going to get without changing the controller mount.

I did have to re-purchase the software, but that was not a big problem.  On a plus note, there are now several new software options open to me such as Auto Pilot which I will be testing very soon.

Conclusion

While it pains me to say it, for the moment the iPad is king when it comes to a tablet to be used on DJI products.  The King is dead…long live the King!

 

 

 

2 Responsesso far.

  1. AGill says:

    Dji shouldn’t be allowed to force people into upgrading their software and firmware. Not everyone wants to or can afford to buy an iPad pro. My p3 adv works just fine but it hasn’t been updated for months, auto updates turned off since we were forced to use here maps. I bought litchi, got Google back and stopped the updates. Everything seems fine and shouldn’t be forced to change something I bought.

    • Barry says:

      Thanks, Anthony.

      I have to agree. Why force someone to update if the original is working just fine. I avoided updating for quite a while but had to once I switched to the iPad. I seem to be lucky and everything seems OK.

      There is danger in not updating though. I’m sure DJI use the “you were not on the latest version” to avoid having to cover crashes. That said I have seen very few actual software failures and considerably more issues from inexperienced people who then try to blame the system.