Our DJI Mavic 3 review discovered that the drone was almost certainly rushed to market last November, but another big firmware update has plugged all of the remaining feature gaps in DJI’s flagship.
The new Mavic 3 firmware (v01.00.0500), which is available now, brings four key features: QuickShots (which are DJI’s automated flight modes), QuickTransfer (which lets you directly connect the drone to your phone via Wi-Fi), a Panorama mode and D-Log color assistance, which gives you a preview of what your graded footage will look like.
Collectively, these won’t transform the performance of the drone, but they are the final missing pieces in a feature-set that the Mavic 3 should have had at launch. The update follows a surprise update in December that delivered features including FocusTrack, MasterShots, and Timelapse.
To get the latest update you need to update the DJI Fly App to v1.5.8, which is available now for both iOS and Android, via the DJI website. Once that’s done, you’ll be able to install the new aircraft firmware to access the new features.
We’re in the process of re-testing the DJI’s flagship drone with the two recent firmware updates, and we’ll update our DJI Mavic 3 review when we’ve seen how it performs. While we didn’t find any of its missing features to be deal-breakers, awarding it four stars due to its excellent Four Thirds camera and handy telephoto lens, there were simply too many holes for us to recommend it wholeheartedly. But we’ll find out soon if it’s now able to take the top spot in our guide to the best drones.
Analysis: a new battle in the skies
The DJI Mavic 3’s unfinished feel at launch is symptomatic of an increasingly common problem with tech, which sees products released with the promise of future features being added via firmware.
We’ve seen a similar situation with cameras like the Nikon Z9 and Canon EOS R5, with the latter benefitting significantly from updates that addressed overheating and autofocus issues following its launch.
But the Mavic 3 has been perhaps the starkest example of a rushed launch, with the drone arriving without several features, including FocusTrack, Timelapses and Panoramas, that come as standard on much cheaper models.
Not many of those features are absolute essentials for pro pilots, and the drone itself flew well and took fantastic video and photos, hence our four-star rating. But we’re looking forward to seeing if the more polished experience makes the DJI Mavic 3 worthy of the top spot in our best drones guide.
The good news for drone fans is that DJI finally has some strong competition from the likes of Autel, which has now released compelling flying cameras like the Autel Evo Lite+, which we awarded five stars. With Skydio also applying pressure on DJI in the US, the net result should be better drones offering a more complete user experience, which is a win for everyone.