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Follow Me observations

Krusty Geeza

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Hey folks, Krusty again!

I'm a bit perplexed by the use of the Follow Me modes & how in the heck the people filming their cars managed to have it use GPS! I can't get that to work at all, ever! There must be something fundamentally simple that I'm not doing right here & the Anafi instructions are of no assistance & I can't find any explicit instructions anywhere on the interwebz either.

What I'm noticing is that regardless of which Follow Me mode is chosen, the Anafi visually tracks you only, whether you use the Skycontroller or just your phone equipped with GPS & barometer. Therefore, whenever it loses sight of you the GPS isn't active to track your position at all, it just behaves erratically like an angry wasp, nearly flying in to things! I have had to shut it down rather urgently in fear of it slamming into something several times now in my experiments with Follow Me.

Here is a Krusty video of what's happening. Any pointers would be greatly appreciated. I have a feeling there is something, or some button I am overlooking here for it not to lock onto the Skycontroller or mobile phone with the GPS locking feature. I always calibrate the drone before flying & have the mobile in aeroplane mode if using the Skycontroller & have wifi paired with the Anafi if using just the mobile phone to control it.

I did notice that there is a button with a mobile phone & a lock on it, is this what I need to press to bind the drone to the phone? Is it this simple? Or is that some sort of screen lock? I can't find anything about it in the manual... :unsure:

 

Dirk_ANAFI

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I think "Follow Me" is what it says:
The drone follows you with your smartphone in your hand or in your pocket.
With "cameraman" Anafi can follow other objects.
 
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Seitenwerk

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When you select the „follow me“ mode, does a screen appear that checks for drones FPS and also for phone gps and optional barometer ? You could test that by just starting the app without your drone switched on and select the mode (of course the screen will never go away then as it can’t find the drone).

I still did not have the time to test it out again but I remember that somehow the app asked me if I wanted to track me/pilot or a car.

Seeing that you now even created a video showing the problem I feel like I need to test that out as soon as possible to help you out ^^
 
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Krusty Geeza

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I think "Follow Me" is what it says:
The drone follows you with your smartphone in your hand or in your pocket.
With "cameraman" Anafi can follow other objects.
In the video I posted here in this thread you can see me put the Skycontroller down a couple of times & walk around for a bit. I have used Follow Me to track my dog & she didn't have the Skycontroller on her!

I'll have a play with Cameraman after I recharge the battery.

Thanks for your helping out a newbie!
 

Krusty Geeza

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When you select the „follow me“ mode, does a screen appear that checks for drones FPS and also for phone gps and optional barometer ? You could test that by just starting the app without your drone switched on and select the mode (of course the screen will never go away then as it can’t find the drone).

I still did not have the time to test it out again but I remember that somehow the app asked me if I wanted to track me/pilot or a car.

Seeing that you now even created a video showing the problem I feel like I need to test that out as soon as possible to help you out ^^
Using the Skycontroller, Follow Me mode doesn't give that screen, in fact even with Cameraman it doesn't either. I'll have to try Cameraman mode just paired to the mobile phone & see if that's the key. Charging the battery now... The next 4 hours is going to be agony...

Thanks for your helping out a newbie!
 

Seitenwerk

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I got my Anafi only around 2 weeks ago so I. That case I am a newbie too ^^. Will definitely have to try that feature and report back to you. Good thing there are enough obstacles around here to „hide“ from the visual lock on and test the gps tracking
 
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Krusty Geeza

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I got my Anafi only around 2 weeks ago so I. That case I am a newbie too ^^. Will definitely have to try that feature and report back to you. Good thing there are enough obstacles around here to „hide“ from the visual lock on and test the gps tracking
I just tried Cameraman with the mobile only & there was nothing that came up about anything at all! Follow Me did the 3 checks & failed the GPS for device & drone cause I'm indoors now.

I only got mine 2 weeks ago too! I have only borrowed a Mavic Pro before this for about 6 weeks late last year, but didn't get to use it much. I've been using the Anafi a couple of times a day, while I am on holidays at home.
 

Seitenwerk

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Just found this from parrot Follow Me

Question: when selecting „follow me“ mode, you have to select a target. Usually you can do so either by: drawing a square around something / or tap a target.

But: did you try to tap/select with two fingers? Maybe the two finger tap, which they mention on this page, is what gives you the special tracking. (I am still very sure that there was a small tutorial on my first flight and somehow I ended up with a popup that asked me if I am tracking the pilot or a car. Either that or I am going mad somehow ^^)

If two finger tap doesn’t work, try out a double tap with one finger on yourself.
 
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Krusty Geeza

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Just found this from parrot Follow Me

Question: when selecting „follow me“ mode, you have to select a target. Usually you can do so either by: drawing a square around something / or tap a target.

But: did you try to tap/select with two fingers? Maybe the two finger tap, which they mention on this page, is what gives you the special tracking. (I am still very sure that there was a small tutorial on my first flight and somehow I ended up with a popup that asked me if I am tracking the pilot or a car. Either that or I am going mad somehow ^^)

If two finger tap doesn’t work, try out a double tap with one finger on yourself.
Brilliant! I reckon this is it! I hadn't seen this before. I'll give it a try when the battery is charged again.

Thanks so much for that. :)

HOW FOLLOW ME WORKS

Step 1: I make my drone take off and stand in front of it, in the frame of the image
Step 2: I select myself in the image with two fingers and confirm with "go"
Step 3: I make sure I always keep my smartphone with me (in my hand or pocket) and I start moving forward
Step 4: My drone automatically follows me, whether my movement is horizontal or vertical
 

Seitenwerk

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I hope that it really helps and is not just another way of selecting a target but with the same outcome. I can only test it tomorrow after work so can’t check if actually working this way at the moment
 
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Mar

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Good info guys, thanks. I just got my new phone so will be testing this also when I get a chance.
 
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Dirk_ANAFI

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In the video I posted here in this thread you can see me put the Skycontroller down a couple of times & walk around for a bit. I have used Follow Me to track my dog & she didn't have the Skycontroller on her!

I'll have a play with Cameraman after I recharge the battery.

Thanks for your helping out a newbie!
Yes, in Follow Me tracking is done by visually following the marked object AND by GPS & barometer, especially when loosing the visual contact or -as I found- if the visual contact gets too far away from GPS position (SC3!), then Anafi switches from visual following to the GPS position following and obviously tries to get back the visual object. And so on ...
 
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Krusty Geeza

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Yes, in Follow Me tracking is done by visually following the marked object AND by GPS & barometer, especially when loosing the visual contact or -as I found- if the visual contact gets too far away from GPS position (SC3!), then Anafi switches from visual following to the GPS position following and obviously tries to get back the visual object. And so on ...
Hmmm... It doesn't do that for me at all, regardless of what configuration I use, whether it's just the phone or the Skycontroller tethered to the phone.

I just tested it then & nothing happens when I touch the image of myself with 2 fingers, I either get the tiniest little green square or it draws a bigger green square but I never get the "go" confirmation at that point. I mustn't be touching it correctly or something. Can anybody do a video screen-grab of that actually working for them on the latest firmware please? I'll download a video screen-grab app for my phone & record what happens on it.

I climbed up a small slippery dip & the Anafi had a major brainfart with me having to stop Follow Me as it sliced its way through the lower part of a trees leaves with it climbing too high & going back too far, possibly searching for me, as the target was now on the slippery dip & not on me...
 

Dirk_ANAFI

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In the video you posted as #1, the Anafi follows you by visual tracking. Also under the trees you didn't get totally lost. So I think no need to switch to GPS tracking.
If this switching to GPS tracking would have happend at that location, perhaps you would not have realized a certain behaviour (e.g. searching for you near the table with your smartphone), because the playground is to small: GPS is not able to find an object within 0..5m, but that is nearly the circle you were moving in the video.
 
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Seitenwerk

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@Dirk_ANAFI May ne right in that in the Video, when you went under the tree it lost you, but it may not have used gps tracking as you were basically still at the same place. I would repeat the same test but once you come back from under the tree with the Anafi not seeing you (still looking at tree) try to actually walk away (in the video you were still in the frame) into a direction like 10 meters outside of Anafis view. This way we may be able to see if it will start to turn and at least move in the same direction which would tell us the it knows you are somewhere else.

In your test the Anahi may have switched to GPS but not moved because you were still in the same area (and gps of your device may not have been that exact while under the tree)
 
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Krusty Geeza

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In the video you posted as #1, the Anafi follows you by visual tracking. Also under the trees you didn't get totally lost. So I think no need to switch to GPS tracking.
If this switching to GPS tracking would have happend at that location, perhaps you would not have realized a certain behaviour (e.g. searching for you near the table with your smartphone), because the playground is to small: GPS is not able to find an object within 0..5m, but that is nearly the circle you were moving in the video.
@Dirk_ANAFI May ne right in that in the Video, when you went under the tree it lost you, but it may not have used gps tracking as you were basically still at the same place. I would repeat the same test but once you come back from under the tree with the Anafi not seeing you (still looking at tree) try to actually walk away (in the video you were still in the frame) into a direction like 10 meters outside of Anafis view. This way we may be able to see if it will start to turn and at least move in the same direction which would tell us the it knows you are somewhere else.

In your test the Anahi may have switched to GPS but not moved because you were still in the same area (and gps of your device may not have been that exact while under the tree)
Now this is what I have very quickly come to love about this forum! The genuine assistance offered by others. :)

I hear you both! I had to react quickly to shut the Anafi down at the playground, which is about 30 x 30 metres, so too small, because of it acting erratically & going into trees, etc...

@Dirk_ANAFI The phone was on me in the video where the Anafi went crazy around the park bench!

I did try this all again this morning & it actually worked! It is very slow though! It took maybe 30 seconds or more to react to my GPS location. If you were driving a car, you'd be way down the road by then, so maybe when it senses faster movement it locks onto that early on in the piece? Video to come later on today.

There is no two finger activation at all, no message for wanting to follow a car, maybe that comes up when it actually recognises a car shape? I'll have to try it out & see.

@Dirk_ANAFI & @Seitenwerk thanks again for your assistance & patience with a newbie going through this understanding process. (y)(y)
 

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Posted this in the wrong thread,so here again:

So I kept my promise to make a test today. I can confirm that the „Follow me“ mode“ actually worked for me as intended! (@Krusty i will send you my screen record via pm later). There was no special double tap or anything needed for me.
This is what happened and the steps I did:

- I started the drone and went up to around 20 meters.
- I turned the drone around until I was in its line of sight
- Switched to „Follow Me“ mode.
- now an overlay appeared an checked for drones GPS, Device GPS, Device Barometer (I guess this only appeared because at that moment my device didn’t have a good enough GPS signal) but disappeared with everything green after less than 2 seconds
- I dragged a square around me so that I started tracking. Because I was so high up in the air and basically looked down (and it was already pretty dark) I was well aware that the Anafi was probably going to loose visual tracking without me needing to hide somewhere. But that was a good thing as I wanted to test the GPS tracking anyway.
- Anafi now trying to track me as expected but lost me pretty quickly as I was just to small and to far away.
- but while the green square was now not on me anymore, the drone still hovered at the correct position
-I started to walk in a direction and suddenly the drone started to focus on my estimated position. (Green square still not on me as is obviously couldn’t get visual lock on anymore) it started to follow me around
-I tried changing direction and even running and Anafi kept following me. It clearly knew where I was even without visual lock on !

You will See in the Video
 
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Seitenwerk

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Now this is what I have very quickly come to love about this forum! The genuine assistance offered by others. :)

I hear you both! I had to react quickly to shut the Anafi down at the playground, which is about 30 x 30 metres, so too small, because of it acting erratically & going into trees, etc...

@Dirk_ANAFI The phone was on me in the video where the Anafi went crazy around the park bench!

I did try this all again this morning & it actually worked! It is very slow though! It took maybe 30 seconds or more to react to my GPS location. If you were driving a car, you'd be way down the road by then, so maybe when it senses faster movement it locks onto that early on in the piece? Video to come later on today.

There is no two finger activation at all, no message for wanting to follow a car, maybe that comes up when it actually recognises a car shape? I'll have to try it out & see.

@Dirk_ANAFI & @Seitenwerk thanks again for your assistance & patience with a newbie going through this understanding process. (y)(y)

I guess it may also depend on your phone. (Parrot even states that in their description). I am using an iPhone XS and as you may have seen in my video, it worked pretty good. Maybe your phone is refreshing the position at a slower pace
 
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Dirk_ANAFI

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Now this is what I have very quickly come to love about this forum! The genuine assistance offered by others. :)

I hear you both! I had to react quickly to shut the Anafi down at the playground, which is about 30 x 30 metres, so too small, because of it acting erratically & going into trees, etc...

@Dirk_ANAFI The phone was on me in the video where the Anafi went crazy around the park bench!

I did try this all again this morning & it actually worked! It is very slow though! It took maybe 30 seconds or more to react to my GPS location. If you were driving a car, you'd be way down the road by then, so maybe when it senses faster movement it locks onto that early on in the piece? Video to come later on today.

There is no two finger activation at all, no message for wanting to follow a car, maybe that comes up when it actually recognises a car shape? I'll have to try it out & see.

@Dirk_ANAFI & @Seitenwerk thanks again for your assistance & patience with a newbie going through this understanding process. (y)(y)
Alex
I think we are learning from each other! Actually in this thread I learned more as I thought to know before.
(... and I will test that as soon as wind calms down and rain stops here. Hope finally in March... ;)).
 
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Krusty Geeza

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Posted this in the wrong thread,so here again:

So I kept my promise to make a test today. I can confirm that the „Follow me“ mode“ actually worked for me as intended! (@Krusty i will send you my screen record via pm later). There was no special double tap or anything needed for me.
This is what happened and the steps I did:

- I started the drone and went up to around 20 meters.
- I turned the drone around until I was in its line of sight
- Switched to „Follow Me“ mode.
- now an overlay appeared an checked for drones GPS, Device GPS, Device Barometer (I guess this only appeared because at that moment my device didn’t have a good enough GPS signal) but disappeared with everything green after less than 2 seconds
- I dragged a square around me so that I started tracking. Because I was so high up in the air and basically looked down (and it was already pretty dark) I was well aware that the Anafi was probably going to loose visual tracking without me needing to hide somewhere. But that was a good thing as I wanted to test the GPS tracking anyway.
- Anafi now trying to track me as expected but lost me pretty quickly as I was just to small and to far away.
- but while the green square was now not on me anymore, the drone still hovered at the correct position
-I started to walk in a direction and suddenly the drone started to focus on my estimated position. (Green square still not on me as is obviously couldn’t get visual lock on anymore) it started to follow me around
-I tried changing direction and even running and Anafi kept following me. It clearly knew where I was even without visual lock on !

You will See in the Video
I basically did the same thing as you, about this time yesterday & got it to work, finally. I'll attach a video of it here which hopefully might help others when they start investigating this too.

Things I learnt about this:
  • Only do this in a very open area, if the drone loses visual sight of you it will fly erratically retracing where it knew you to last be & hungry trees & park benches that like to leap out at drones or the like are not friends of your Anafi!
  • Follow Me likes you (the subject) to be between 18-20 metres from the drone to start with
  • There is no two finger touch activation thing as mentioned on the Parrot website that I quoted above in a previous response, at 1:53 I try this while I am huge on the screen several times & it never does anything
  • It takes about 20-30 seconds for the GPS tracking to kick in (if you're filming a car, make sure you force activation of this before heading off into the forest or going around hills, buildings, etc...)
  • You can move yourself (the subject) to where you want in the frame by long pressing on yourself (the subject) then dragging it to where you want it in the frame
  • Press record on your controller! Seriously! I initially forgot, so the drone footage doesn't kick in until about 7:45, but you can see the Anafi's point of view via the inserted screenshot from my phone all the way through
Regarding the video, it's 16 minutes long & I'll apologise upfront for not being a professional Youtube presenter & randomly mumbling to myself through this & also for the oversaturated colours, I'm only just learning to capture & edit video! I have combined together an audio recording from my mobile phone, video screen capture from my mobile phone & eventually (when I finally remembered) drone footage for this video. There's nothing of any artistic or cinematographic merit here, it's just to help show that this does actually work & also that you don't have to be in the centre of the frame, you can place yourself wherever you want in the frame!

Of a technical point of view, it's shot in Cinema mode, so it's 23.98 fps at 4096 x 216 pixels, which I shrank smaller on export. I went with the Natural capture, eventually I'll start using P-log, maybe, I saw a video talking about the technicalities of using Log formats on drones & it explained from a technical point of view that you don't actually gain any dynamic range, contrary to popular opinion, unless you are using a big sensor drone! The exposure was manually set at ISO 100 & I used a ND 16 filter to allow a shutter speed of 1/50 to get the cinema look right. I've finally sorted out my importing & editing woes, throwing down the cold hard cash for Final Cut Pro to edit in. No more random jittery images, but a heck of a steep learning curve to work through!

Once again, thanks to everyone that commented & helped me with this, it's truly appreciated. :)

 
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