Paper Makes For The Skies
“If at first you succeed, try, try to do even better,” might not really be a cliche, but it sure applies to the PowerUp 4.0. This “paper” airplane is anything but when it first appeared on the scene years ago — think of it, you folded up a piece of paper into a paper airplane like has been done for dozens of years past. Then you inserted this rod that had a battery and Bluetooth tech and a nosecone with a propeller. Telling the propeller to spin, you launched the paper airplane in the air to find it moving now under its own power. Then the push to improve began, with app control increased and better battery times and all of that.
A Sophisticated Paper Airplane
This has now led to this much more sophisticated model as it comes to flying — so now you are getting a slew of technologies for making the flight more controlled and operational. This consists of two propellers, not a single one plus an onboard computer (i.e., a digital chip with instructions pertaining to it flying). Because of this — and don’t forget the auto stabilizers, gyro compensation — the plane can actually correct and right itself during flight to compensate for lousy throws (and that “hook” to the right or left in throwing, courtesy of the bowling world). The onboard computer also enables the plane to perform stunts without human intervention (probably a good thing too). Just enable the auto-loop function once the plane is airborn. The company is not kidding when they say this is the most advanced and user friendly flying “paper airplane.”
So let’s get to the specs then: that app now has a 230 foot range (70 meters) so no concerns if the plane really heads away. Speeds of up to 20 mph and a replaceable battery whose charging time is under a half hour (take a power pack along to charge on the fly). Two motors to get it moving and keep it moving.
Of course there has to be a rechargeable battery (using a USB connection as pretty much everything now does). It’s been beefed up so flight can now take place at a two digit number: you can get 10 minutes of piloted, controllable flight per charge.
As regards the app (iOS/Android), it now is used as a controller as it has been in the past (Bluetooth being the radio frequency shooting between the phone and Powerup), with real-time abiity to making it loop and barrel roll and do a hammerhead (you’ll quickly figure out what all these mean, no worries). Additionally pertinent flight data is being/has been recorded and can now be reviewed as it flies; flight analytics like thrust levels and turn angles and personalized in-app suggestions for improving how it flies based on past performance.
But it’s important to remember that you are in control of the plane — regardless of all the technologies for making the plane fly better and perform better, it’s still the person flying it that is the pilot. PowerUp 4.0 does make it easier to fly than any previous model, but there will still be a sense of accomplishment in taking over the “controls” in the app, and learning the best way to send the plane up, up and away. Not to mention creating the best plane (actually creating a variety of them) so as to experience the differences in how they fly and perform.
You're Doing The Flying
Perhaps the best part of all this is that the annoyance level of flying a propeller based paper airplane has been removed. If the plane doesn’t perform well, then people quickly lose interested even if they are to blame for not taking more care in how they approach flying. In the case of the PowerUp 4.0, much effort has been made to overcome these obstacles so that people can enjoy the thrill of flying their own created airplane.
The PowerUp 4.0 comes with everything needed; that is the Bluetooth module with the twin motors and computer module and the crossbar. Plus a micro-USB cable and spare propeller set and instructions. And templates for making the Invader airplane.Through the strength and power of this latest iteration of “paper airplane,” you re not restricted to using paper only either: light balsa wood an be employed and there’s even a (humorous) foam Jet Fighter purchasable from the company that the 4.0 will fit into (surface to surface missiles not included). Retail is $79.99 and further details can be had by going to https://www.poweruptoys.com/collections/4-0/products/powerup-4-0