Perceptiv Labs Launches Subject-Tracking Accessory for Drones

Perceptiv Labs, a startup from Waterloo, Ontario is launching a device for drones called SHIFT that can be used to capture remarkable aerial shots of an intended subject without ever going out of focus. The two-part accessory, available for pre-order now, comes with a processor and vision sensor that can be attached to the DJI Phantom and 3D Robotics Iris drone models. Users can then use their mobile devices to designate what they want to track and where they want to track it.

The SHIFT promises to make smooth subject tracking possible using advanced machine learning and imagine processing software, TechCrunch reports. Using the SHIFT companion app, users can view footage being captured in real time by the drone in flight and simply tap on a subject to bring it into focus. The simple gesture then signals the processor and vision sensor to begin tracking the designated subject all throughout the shoot.


Co-founder Neil Mathew tells TechCrunch that ultimately the company’s “end goal is to build the infrastructure of vision-based intelligence for drones that will let them navigate independently in unknown spaces, avoid collisions with obstacles, and be able to track and detect objects.”

Mathew is also enthusiastic about launching a product that is useful and practical to consumers today. SHIFT is a product that offers a tangible solution, especially for filmmakers that have previously been challenged with the dual task of not only operating a drone in flight, but also camera angles to capture the best shots from up above.

The SHIFT kit is available for pre-order now for $599 with an expected fall release. The kit will retail for $800 once pre-orders stop being accepted.