I added RC control  via telemetry link to DroidPlanner, the new app (V0.4.0) will be on Google Play shortly.


First let me say that this isn't a replacement for your RC transmitter (at least for now), always keep your RC tx nearby. I want to use this to guide a plane in FBW mode, so the sensibility and latency of the telemetry links isn't so critical.

It is responsive but the touch screen is a bad interface for the user. Even using a mouse for control is better and gives a lower latency. I was planning to add support for USB Joysticks, but none of the crappy game-pads I had is recognized as an InputDevice by the Android OS. As soon as I find a supported Joystick I will implement it.

The setup used is this:

  • APM2.5
  • Chinese tablet running DroidPlanner
  • 3DRobotics telemetry modules, default settings (56k serial, 64k air)
  • EthernetGCS prototype.
  • A couple of servos
  • Dlink DI-524 WiFi router for the local network



Here is a video showing the delay caused by the telemetry and application, it isn't larger than MP on the same setup.


If you missed the last post, here is a video of Droidplanner doing an entire mission/planning:


And here is a picture of the current state of the EthernetGCS prototype (the final board will be 70x20mm, without the antenna):



Just a tip from diydrones user Rana:

The WiFly module from spark-fun works with the DroidPlanner App, and is a very simple setup since it plugs on a Xbee board. The module and be connected to the APM and be received by DroidPlanner trough a WiFi router or directly in adhoc mod (but adhoc this isn't tested yet).



I would like to thanks Craig from 3DRobotics for his support, and all the beta testers for their feedback. As always if you want to help consider donating for the project by buying this app, joining the development team, or reporting a issue/bug/improvement on GitHub.

For those who can't wait the update on Google Play I attached DroidPlanner_v0.4.0.apk.

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  • Hi, i have the crius aiop running megapirateng, I'm interrested in connecting the quad to droidplanner via wifly for telemetry, can any one tell me the steps that should be done to do it? I'm a beginner. Thanks

  • Developer

    @Brent: We already have someone working on the antenna tracker code, and it'll be wireless. You can follow the progress here:

  • I cant believe I am only stumbling on this now! Looks great and the new version 2 looks fantastic! Any chance of the GPS coordinates being able to be sent over USB to control the Maestro board much like Mission Planner for antenna tracking?

    It seems that other people have go it working as noted here. That would be a great feature to add to the mix!

  • @Arthur,

    Thanks! I've checked the perfomance of HUD on my setup and the latency is noticeably less than I saw in the videos from the other users on youtube. 

    Yes, I had a look of Rana's post. I especially like the approach of using WiFly because no any external hardware for tablet/phone required. 

  • Developer

    @c j g

    That's great, thanks for sharing. I have also connected with a 3G connection, it worked but had a 1s to 3s delay.


    Nice system, with the WiFly module the telemetry latency will be reduced. DiyDrones user Rana is also using a wifly module. This probably could be optimized to use only the Android app to control the drone.

  • Ok, then 40Hz must be optimal. 

    Yes, I understood what you mean. 

    I'm using a little bit different setup, I have my custom autopilot ( with MAVLink protocol. Radio link includes WiFly module on the quadcopter communicating with smarthphone/tablet's intergrated WiFi (ground device is in router mode). I'm curious to test and compare the lag time. Let you know about the results in the next few days.

  • ... just for the records arthur. I have been sucessfully tested droidplanner als gcs for my telemetry over 3G setup (used a smartphone, spp mirror and a BT modul onboard). Thanx.

  • Developer

    The freq. is 40Hz, I set it to this value from experimentation on a TCP connection. But Probably is best to push it to a user defined preference.

    The lag is caused by the delay from setting a position of the stick in the app, pushing it out of the device trough the telemetry link and into APM. Each of this steps increases the lag. 

    Increasing the rate can even make things worst since it can clog the telemetry link.  But a to lower rate makes the    output become a steeped movement (let's not restart the discussing on sampling rate). 

  • @Arthur

    Yes, this is known issue. At which rate is sent the message? I guess, if send it at 50Hz for instance instead of 10Hz, this will reduce the lag. 

    Yes, right, plane is simpler to control with sticks than with inclination, but for copters inclination control is more comfortable, I think. I would be grateful if both variants could be supported. 

    Now it's clear, thanks!

  • Developer


    There is some lag in the control  (mainly because of the telemetry link). I have not tested it in flight yet, so I don't know how hard will it be to control. And since I don't have a copter accelerometer control doesn't make too much sense for a plane. 

    The RC override is done by the message #RC_CHANNELS_OVERRIDE, just like in Mission planner.

    I just added two issues to the github site: Real Time Plot and Battery Status.

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