Motorola Razr launchDubai, United Arab Emirates
AO Drones launches the iconic Motorola Razr in the Dubai sky
AO Drones, the specialist global provider of drone light shows, has delivered an eye-catching airborne show to form a video campaign promoting Motorola’s reimagination of its iconic Razr flip phone in the Middle East and Africa. Following its upload the video quickly attracted more than 200,000 views through Motorola’s social media channels.
The teams from AO Drones and AO Creative, part of entertainment lighting visionary AO Technology, worked in collaboration with Motorola and netizency, the Middle East-based digital marketing agency, to design and deliver all the visual content. Animated logos, brand names and messages – including the #feeltheflip hashtag from Motorola’s social media campaign – filled Dubai’s night sky. AO Drones’ design team even recreated a perfect animation of the Razr flip phone opening, closing and rotating in the sky.
Vinayak Shenoy, Head of Marketing, Middle East and Africa for Motorola’s parent company Lenovo, said of the Razr launch event, “A unique, one-of-a-kind product like this deserves a unique, one-of-a-kind experience. We felt that this drone show symbolises what this product is all about – a great blend of technology and art . . . The beauty of 120 drones rising in the air all together, the whirring of the drones and the beautiful formations is something I’m going to remember for a very long time.”
AO achieved all this with 12 crew on-site, including licensed operator ‘pilots’, drone technicians and film crew to capture the show for Motorola’s social media channels, the key aim of the launch, as AO’s founder and executive producer Marco Niedermeier explains: “From the beginning we asked, what was the intention? It was to create great content for social media and get maximum shares and engagement. So we looked after the whole production – the drone show, the film – but without an invited audience on-site.”
The AO Drones fleet has been specially developed over two years, using highly sophisticated technology, to meet the unique needs of live entertainment production. Its advanced control platform enables flexible, efficient and safe creation of shows in outdoor environments. What’s more, the speed and accuracy of the drones enables efficiencies which are vital for AO Drones to achieve its aim of making airborne lightshows a viable option for event productions everywhere.
“Drone shows will often use 300 or more drones, but in two layers,” Niedermeier continues. “Some will be visible making one image while others, switched off, move to position to make the next image. Here, however, we created every effect we needed with just 120 drones, which is a more affordable proposition. We can do this because our drones are fast enough, and our show programmers are skilled enough, that we can make extremely efficient use of their airborne time.”
For drone shows, as with any event production, safety is of the first importance. In modelling the three-dimensional performance space, AO Drones’ pilots set exclusion zone parameters within the software, blocking any drone from venturing beyond these limits. This is vital where audiences or production crew are located nearby, so that safe operating distances are constantly maintained. In the event of failure – a loss of control signal, for example – the drones are programmed to return safely to their original launch positions. “But, in more than 1,000 hours we have flown with this fleet, we have had no failures,” says Niedermeier.
The drones’ battery life allows them to stay airborne for 20 minutes in normal conditions, or less where they need to use more power to counter the wind. “We recommend shows are between 10 and 14 minutes in duration, to allow for take-off and landing, and wind speed,” says Niedermeier. “For this show, it was quite windy in the evening, but our drones are designed to cope with this. They can move fast – up to 10 metres per second – so they have the power to accurately maintain their positions against the wind. They are very stable.”
Adding a further spectacular dimension to the aerial display, the AO team used camera drones to provide dynamic ‘fly-through’ footage, so that the video would take the viewer up and into the drone formation, even passing directly through the ‘o’ at the centre of the Motorola logo. “It’s not just filming a flat logo in the sky,” explains Niedermeier. “This really is three-dimensional, dynamic show content.”
This was the latest successful project for AO Drones, which has found its expertise in increasing demand since its launch last year. Its unrivalled skill in designing, programming and executing these three-dimensional aerial animations, combined with AO’s 25 years in entertainment production, make them a go-to provider in this increasingly popular entertainment medium.
Niedermeier concludes, “We are very happy that Motorola chose to use a drone show for their product launch. Working with Motorola and netizency has been such a positive experience, and the result speaks for itself.”
AO Drones and AO Creative in collaboration with Motorola and netizency
AO Technology / Motorola
Motorola and netizency
The Making Of
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