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News & Notes

Is The Lily Drone Back from the Dead?

Mota Group gives a drone failure new life

August 29, 2017

It feels like a lifetime ago that the Lily drone captivated the world with its astounding list of features and flashy promotional video. In that time, we’ve watched Lily’s meteoric rise and its ultimate downfall. But now, Lily is back from the dead, thanks to U.S. electronics company Mota Group.

As a quick refresher, Lily came onto the scene in May 2015 with an amazing promotional video and the option for $499 preorders. Lily’s features were nigh unheard of in 2015 and remain ambitious in 2017 — two such capabilities were a waterproof exterior and a “throw-and-fly” function, where the user could throw Lily into the air and it would automatically stabilize in flight.

To say there was a high demand for the Lily would be a dramatic understatement — the promotional video has over 12 million views, and the crowdfunding campaign received thousands of backers hoping to get their hands on the drone.

Long story short, the company declared bankruptcy earlier this year. Consumers, and the industry as a whole, assumed this was the end of Lily — but now it appears it may only be the beginning.
Back in Mota-tion

On August 26, Lily added a new video to its YouTube channel — a cryptic, 8-second clip featuring the Lily logo. Angry and confused commenters accused Lily of stealing their money, lying to customers, and lobbed insults such as “scam” and “fraud.”

But the original makers of Lily did not launch the video. According to the new Lily website, U.S. consumer electronics company Mota Group purchased all of Lily’s assets after it declared bankruptcy, and has now revitalized the Lily drone concept. The company is calling the new Lily the “Lily Next-Gen,” and selling it for $699.00.

Consumers are understandably confused. The new model looks nearly identical to the original Lily, and so does its website. But there are some important differences: While the Lily Next-Gen features an upgraded camera and folding arms, it doesn’t have throw-and-fly, and it isn’t waterproof. So it’s hard to call it the same drone.

And at this point, the capabilities of the Lily drone and Mota’s ability to deliver on its promises remain to be seen. The new Lily site features a pretty comprehensive FAQ section addressing various concerns.

Only time will tell whether Lily will be able to regain some of its former glory, or if it will meet the fate of so many other drone companies. We’re rooting for you, Lily.
Featured image: Lily