US Army Tests New Drone Swarm

The latest drone test exercise run by the US Army was different to most, in that instead of showcasing a brand new multi-million-dollar aircraft, it instead used a swarm of standard off-the-shelf consumer drones.

The objects of these exercises were twofold. Firstly, deploying the drones as a swarm to simulate a threat and later testing the possibility of utilizing the same cheap swarms in military operations. This would allow the US Army to adapt to the potential threats of consumer drones when used against their forces and develop countermeasures against these tactics.

The exercises included a combat simulation with a swarm of drones supporting the opposing forces, who used them to spot enemy defensive positions, allowing their forces to gain a tactical advantage against them. Another test was flooding the airspace with drones, disrupting radar with dozens of small airborne objects.

Individually, a single consumer drone is no match for any one of the combat drones used by the US Army in it’s current operations, being far more vulnerable to both gunfire and jamming. However, with costs of up to 100-times less than this specialist hardware, it becomes far more feasible to deploy large numbers, as well as allowing them to be more disposable. Shooting down one small drone is easy. Shooting down one hundred is far less achievable. And with the potential for these consumer drones to be customized relatively cheaply with longer range equipment, night-vision and similar sensors and even weaponry, consumer drones seem to be gaining a place in modern warfare.

Can you imagine the toys you see on shelves everywhere now, being deployed in war, and will this change the face of the low-cost drone market? Only time will tell.

ROCCAT Launched New Mini-Site and Announced 3 New Exciting Products

ROCCAT has launched a new demo site and announced three new products. When loading the site you’re presented with a demo reading: “We’ve Innovated. We’ve improved on the industry concepts, and made out mark. Now it’s time for ROCCAT to blaze a brand new trail. We are ROCCAT Studios, and we are future ready”

Scrolling down the site we’re presented with a bunch of slogans: “ROCCAT’s new design philosophy are the definition of adaptability. From the foundational superstructure that encases our technology, to the ergonomic human layer that tactilely connects gamers with out peripherals, adaptive functionality is out first priority. That is what future ready means.” But after all that, we get to the good stuff.

The first new product they introduce to us is the ROCCAT Nyth MMO Gaming mouse. The Nyth is not the typical MMO mouse with just the usual high amount of programmable buttons needed for MMO gaming. All those buttons are fully modular and can not only be changed around to your liking but can also be custom designed and printed by yourself using a 3D printer.

The second product announced via the mini site is a new keyboard, the ROCCAT Skeltr. A gaming keyboard with complete smart device integration, promised to fit all sizes. The rail and smartphone holster at the back allow for position adjustment and rotation, to fit every need. The keyboard also offers the by now defaults of customized back-lighting, a bunch of macro keys you can assign to your likings, USB ports and audio jacks.

The Skeltr keyboard has build-in Bluetooth technology to connect directly to your phone. With the dedicated call button and use of the build-in headset connectors, there won’t be any need to remove the phone from the holster to make calls. Even for chatting and texting there won’t be any need to remove it, as the keyboard can take over and do that too.

 

The third and last product introduced is a smartphone app and driver system called ROCCAT Swarm. A unified driver compatible across all gaming-relevant platforms, or so it promises, that keeps track of your ROCCAT products and giving you instant access to their settings via the phone display. Since it’s also running on your PC, it knows what programs and apps you use and can provide feature specific options to those as well.

The demo page ends with the slogan “and we’re only getting started”, hinting more exiting new products in the future. You can head over to future-ready.roccat.org and check out the demo site yourself, to get the full experience.

Thank you ROCCAT for providing us with this information

Images courtesy of ROCCAT