The answer to this question is quite easy. We’ll give the short answer and then some explanation.
DJI is to the drone world what the iPhone was (in it’s first years) to the Smartphone – that is, it is virtually the only mature and well engineered product in its particular category. There is a good reason that DJI gets up to 80% of the camera drone sales in the $500-$1500 category – and this reason is that they work better than other brands.
The Slightly Longer Story
DJI has now been in this business for over 10 years. Most other drone companies are much newer. DJI was started and is run by very smart and driven management who are typically years ahead of other makers. With over 3,000 employees and 1,500 engineers, DJI is the ONLY company that has applied the amount of resources to solve many of the problems inherent in Aerial Robotics. They have also taken advantage of mass production (they own their own factories) to constantly lower the price of the technology.
It turns out that making a quality camera drone is much harder than it seems. It is closer in scope to designing real aircraft than it is to making a fancy toy or a basic computer. Dozens of companies and 100’s of millions of dollars have been spent by would-be competitors trying to grab some of the market share from DJI. None of the efforts has been successful.
Other Companies and Their stories
Other camera drone companies currently vying for some of DJI’s market include Yuneec, Parrot and Autel Robotics. Other companies are making specialty models…geared toward action sports or other more focused use. Yuneec is a year or more behind DJI in technology and even further in quality control. Parrot is focused on new buyers and toys – their machines do not compete direction with DJI. Autel Robotics recently introduced a “DJI Phantom Clone” which look decent – but it does tell you something when the most successful competitor looks to be a craft which is almost a direct clone of the original.
Time will Tell
These facts may eventually change – but it won’t be a couple engineers in a garage making the next big thing in consumer camera drones. It will take many years and 100’s of million of dollars to even start to compete with DJI – and by the time other makers invest that, DJI will likely once again leapfrog them.
Do yourself a favor. If you want a consumer-level video and camera drone that works…or, at least, works better than any other machine currently available, consider the DJI Product line.