Best Toy Drones [Our Comprehensive Buying Guide]

The popularity of drones has risen dramatically in recent years, causing drone technology to become more and more sophisticated. As the drones have become more sophisticated, so too have their uses, with commercial use currently at an all-time high.

However, drone enthusiasts and manufacturers alike have not lost sight of some of the more lighthearted pursuits that drew them to the hobby in the first place. Smaller, remote control drones are still at the heart of the drone community. Here are some of the biggest (and smallest) and best drones for kids (and big kids) available on the market today.


DJI Spark

DJI Spark

The Spark is the smallest drone offered by the industry leading DJI company. It is launched directly from the operator’s hand and is considered to be one of the most user-friendly drones on the market.

Key Features:

Gesture Mode: allows operators to launch the Spark and shoot video along predetermined flight paths. Some of these options include:

  • Circling
  • Following
  • Filming straight up

Intelligent Flight Modes: the same ones found on the more sophisticated drones like, TapFly and ActiveTrack. Some of these offer gesture recognition and obstacle avoidance capabilities.

QuickShot: The QuickShot feature will identify and consolidate the best footage captured during each flight into a 10-second video for you. There is no need to view raw footage, edit, or download. QuickShot takes care of it for you.

Key Specs:

  • 16-minute Flight Time
  • 2-mile transmission range
  • Reaches speeds up to 31mph
  • 98 ft. VPS range
  • Dual axis gimbal
  • Extremely light weight (.66 pounds)
  • Camera: 1/2.3 Sensor Powerful Lens
  • 1080p resolution


Force1 U49C Red Heron Quadcopter

Force1 U49C Red Heron Quadcopter

The U49C Red Heron Quadcopter is a more kid friendly drone than the Parrot. It offers a plethora of great features that add to the flight experience and make it extremely user friendly.

Features:

  • High Quality Pictures and Video
  • Kid-Friendly “Headless Mode”
  • Ready Out of the Box:
  • Altitude Hold
  • 360 Degree Protected Propellers
  • Single Button Takeoff and Landing

Specs:

  • Weight: 3 lbs.
  • 720p Video Resolution
  • 4V 1000mAh LiPo Battery
  • Maximum Flight Time: up to 15 minutes
  • 200 ft Transmission Range


Parrot Mambo

Parrot Mambo

The Parrot Mambo is one of the most awesome little quadcopters on the market. Produced by one of the top manufacturers around, it is high quality, offered at a great price-point, and is jam packed with features that make it super appealing for children (and children-at-heart).

Features:

  • Inertial Measurement Unit to evaluate speed, tilt and obstacle contact
  • Multitude of sensors: Ultrasound, Pressure, and Camera
  • Stabilization Software
  • Flight control software
  • Optimized weight/speed ratio
  • 60 FPS vertical camera

Accessories:

Grabber Claws: The Mambo comes with two little machine arms on the front that are capable of catching, holding, and releasing up to 4g of weight.

Mini Cannon: This model even gives you the option of attaching a mini cannon to the top hull that can remotely fire pellets.

Specs:

  • Weight: 63g (without bumpers)
  • Weight with Camera: 73g
  • 660mAh LiPo Battery
  • Autonomy with accessory or bumpers: 8 minutes
  • Autonomy with no accessory or bumpers: 10 minutes
  • 30min charging time
  • Range with smartphone: 100 ft / 30 m
  • Range with Parrot Flypad: 100 meters
  • Dimensions: 7.1 x 7.1 in.
  • Dimensions with bumpers: 18 x 18 cm


Parrot Hydrofoil ORAK

Parrot Hydrofoil ORAK

The Parrot Hydrofoil ORAK is an amphibious drone (operates both in the air and on water) that can whizz across the water at around 5 knots with its hydrofoil attached. It is one of very few of its kind and certainly one of the best manufactured.

Size and Weight:

  • Size without hydrofoil: 150 x 150 x 40 mm
  • Size with hydrofoil: 320 x 340 x 140mm
  • Weight without hydrofoil: 58 grams
  • Weight with hydrofoil: 247 grams

Speed and Range:

  • Speed on water: 11 miles per hour
  • Speed in the air: 6 miles per hour
  • Maximum Range: 20 Meters

Advanced Features:

  • Rapid Charging: Under 25 minutes, with 2.6 A charger (not included)
  • Standard Charge: Up to 90 minutes of use with micro USB (included)
  • Storage: 33 megabytes Flash Memory
  • Drive: 4 engines
  • Gyroscope: 3 axles
  • Barometer

Additional Features:

The Parrot Hydrofoil also comes with additional interactive and educational opportunities built in to the package. Parrot Drones has partnered with Tynker, the leading code-learning platform for kids, to develop STEM and coding activities to teach and develop skills.

Also included is an activity book for the Apple Swift Playground. All of this can be shared with friends to help the learning spread in a fun, game-like fashion.


Syma X5SC

Syma X5SC

The Syma X5SC is a stripped down, barebones little quadcopter that is built to fly indoors. It is a perfect unit for breaktime recreation around the office or in the home.

Features:

  • 6 axis gyroscopic flight system (basic)
  • 4 GHz 4 channel transmission system (low interference)
  • Headless Mode (very user friendly, good for beginners)
  • 2 mega pixel high definition camera

A true toy drone in every facet, the Syma X5SC comes ready-to-fly from the box, requires minimal maintenance and is offered at minimal cost. It might just be the best cheap drone to buy.


Propel Star Wars Drones

Propel Star Wars Drones

Now these little drones are not only aesthetically pleasing, they are exactly what we think of when talking about drones for kids. Propel has replicated a host of aircraft from the most successful sci-fi franchise in the history of cinema, and they do not disappoint.

Features:

Infrared Laser: You read that right—each drone is outfit with its own infrared laser system so that it can be pitted against others in an actual dogfight.

Integrated Sensor System: The yin to the laser’s yang, the integrated sensor system is designed to detect a hit from an opponent’s laser. This sends a signal to the opposing drone’s pilot so that he knows he has scored a direct hit. But wait, there’s more…

Vibrating Controller: When a pilot scores a direct hit on an opponent, the signal sent in return will cause the pilot’s controller to vibrate, giving a visceral marker of success.

“Play Dead” Feature: Once a drone has recorded three direct hits from an opponent, the motor will shut off and the drone will drop from the sky in true cinematic fashion. Fun stuff!

The Propel Star Wars Drones are truly unique. While most toy drones are simply well-engineered miniature UAVs that simulate the experience of their professional-grade counterparts, the Star Wars drones were designed for the sake of pure fun. They are quite possibly the best toy drones on the market.


Cheerson CX-10

Cheerson CX-10

The Cheerson CX-10 is heralded as one of the most quality-driven and durable toy drones. While it will certainly never be found amongst the fastest racing drones , it still packs a ton of fun. This little unit is dirt cheap, so you won’t have to worry about it taking a nose dive or going headfirst into the wall—it is among the absolute best drones for beginners.

Specs:

  • Non-removable battery will allow between 4 to 7 minutes of flight time
  • Only takes 40 minutes to fully charge

Features:

  • 6 axis gyroscopic flight system (and an efficient one, at that)
  • Lightweight plastic skeleton
  • Multiple flight options so you can operate at lower speeds during the learning process
  • Fully manual, no flight autonomy
  • LED lights

Factory Kit:

The Cheerson CX-10 comes RTF from the factory complete with:

  • The drone
  • Controller
  • Battery
  • Charger
  • Extra propellers (because, lets’s face it, you’re going to crash it)

With a price tag under $30 you may as well buy a few—one for the kids, one for the house, and one for the office. For even more great drone deals, check out our Black Friday drones for sale.


UDI U45

UDI U45

The UDI U45 resides somewhere toward the more sophisticated end of the toy drone spectrum. It sports a higher-end HD camera capable of capturing quality footage.

Features:

  • HD camera that shoots in 720p (capable of capturing video footage or still photography)
  • Integrated video transmission system
  • FPV streaming to either a phone or tablet using UDI’s pilot application
  • WiFi Hotspot
  • Altitude Hold
  • Headless Mode
  • VR Headset compatible
  • Pre-flight route calibration
  • One-touch automatic takeoff and landing

With most of the bells and whistles of a higher-class machine, the UDI U45 offers a fantastic introduction into the true drone dynamic. It is regarded as one of the best toy drones available and pays homage to machines of a higher caliber.


DJI S1000

DJI S1000

The DJI S100 is considerably more sophisticated than anything else you’ll find on this list—in reality it is one of the best helicopter drones for sale today. It is what you might call a big kid drone. DJI is simply the best and most popular manufacturer around today, and the DJI S1000 lives up to its heritage.

Features:

  • Large carrying capacity
  • Strong and stable
  • Foldable arms for high portability
  • New power distribution system
  • Removable upper center board
  • Sparkproof plug
  • Wide range of shooting angles
  • Retractable landing gear
  • Compatible with Zenmuse gimbals
  • Reduced vibrations for clearer footage
  • Increased power
  • Innovative arm design

Unlike most toy and commercial multi-propellered drones, the DJI S1000 is not a quadcopter, but an octocoper. It has 8 self-storing portable arms that are easily folded down for maximum portability and easy storage.

The DJI S1000 also boasts:

  • Zenmuse Z15 gimbal
  • DJI A2 Controller
  • Autopilot Feature
  • 4114 pro motors and 1552 Propellers
  • 8 rotors

DJI is known for producing many of the best drones available for sale, and the DJI S1000 is no exception. It is a fantastic buy, even at a much higher price point than the other drones mentioned here.


Toy Drones

With so many great drones available on the market, it will behoove you to take a little time to see what is out there to make sure that you make the right purchase for you or your child. Toy drones are a fantastic introduction into the drone world, and there is truly something out there for everyone, regardless of experience level.

Be sure to check out our site for the best Cyber Monday drone deals on the web! Despite, it’s important to note here that toy and beginner drones can be mutually exclusive. Even for adults or aspiring drone pilots, beginning first with a cheap quadcopter can help you familiarize with the controls, understand the technology, and at least flirt with the drone dynamic.

You won’t have to worry about crashing your drone (which you probably will) and losing a big chunk of your bank account. Instead, once you feel like you ‘get it,’ you can move on to more professional machines, or at the very least a beginner drone that’s more capable than a toy.