It's almost always the case that when a product is listed as "out of stock" by a manufacturer's website, that's usually an indication that the product is either poised to be discontinued, or replaced outright with the next generation. But what does it mean when most of the drones sold by DJI, including the Mavic 2 Pro and the Phantom 4 Pro, are listed out sold out? Is DJI about to reset the board?
The large number of DJI drones currently listed as out of stock on the DJI website leave many guessing as to what DJI’s plans are. The holiday shopping season is almost around the corner, and it’s hard to imagine that DJI will not have any kind of exciting drone product on the shelves for people to buy.
Drone enthusiast site DroneDJ follows DJI pretty closely, and after doing an exhaustive search of what products are in stock, they found that the majority of DJI UAVs were listed as out of stock. Here's a brief list of DJI Drones listed as out of stock on the company site:
- DJI Spark Controller Combo – Alpine White
- DJI Spark Fly More Combo – Alpine White
- DJI Spark Controller Combo – Lava Red
- DJI Spark Fly More Combo – Lava Red
- DJI Mavic Air Arctic White
- DJI Mavic Air Onyx Black
- DJI Mavic Air Flame Red
- DJI Mavic 2 Pro
- DJI Mavic 2 Pro & DJI Goggles RE
- DJI Mavic 2 Zoom & DJI Goggles RE
- DJI Phantom 4 Advanced
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2.0 & DJI Goggles RE
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro+ V2.0
- DJI Phantom 4 Pro+ V2.0 & DJI Goggles RE
- DJI Inspire 2 Professional
- DJI Inspire 2 Premium
All told, 17 products are listed as out of stock as of press time. The only drones listed as available are the DJI Mavic Air Fly More Combo, DJI Mavic Pro Platinum, and the DJI Mavic Pro 2 with Smart Controller.
Additionally, the DJI Mavic 2 Zoom, the DJI Inspire 2, and the Ryze Tello are also listed as available. Third-party distributors like Amazon and others will have their own independent stocks available, and some of the models are available as refurbished units on DJI's own site.
So, what's going on? What's happening here? First off, it's important to keep in mind that the U.S. and China are in the middle of a "trade war." We've already talked about how the ripple effect of this war is falling camera sales. So DJI may have scaled back production on some products because sales are down due to a 25 percent tariff.
Additionally, we also know that DJI is redesigning all their drones to include helicopter and airplane detectors so that they can be seen by air traffic control, other drone operators and other aircraft radar. DJI is committed to an initiative for safer skies, and part of that is introducing a kind of IFF (identify friend/foe) system. In fact, the more we think about that, the more it makes sense that that is why these products are out of stock.
DJI has to incorporate these news electronics moving forward. So it's extremely likely that's the reason.
It could also indicate something new is coming. DJI could naturally replace some models and discontinue others to make room for new models. We've already heard rumors that the DJI Spark was being phased out and a new DJI Mavic Mini with retractable rotors would be taking its place. Imagine if the Spark and the Mavic Air had a baby. That's the Mavic Mini.
It's also what the Spark should have been all along. If I was a betting man, I'm guessing it took DJI awhile to work out the engineering for retractable rotors in a drone that small and light. It also makes sense that the Mavic Air would be phased out since the Mini would kill two birds with one stone. I'm also hearing that a Mavic 2 Nano may be out in the wild.
Credit: OsitaLV on Twitter
Then there's the Phantom 4. There's been talk for a while now that the Phantom series would get a serious update with a larger camera that offers replaceable lenses. But that rumor has been around for over a year and ran out of steam once the Mavic 2 Zoom was released. So maybe not. But I think it's safe to say the Phantom 4 Pro is overdue for replacement.
And that leaves the Inspire 2 Pro and Premium. With the popularity of the Mavic 2 Pro and Zoom models and DJI's higher-end professional Matrice lines, it just may be that users are gravitating towards the Mavic 2 line since it's about 7 times cheaper in price. Then again, 3 follows 2, so maybe that's where we're headed.
Either way, with September/October usually the window for product announcements ahead of the Holiday shopping season, and with most of the models being out of stock being prosumer grade drones, I think it's safe to say we'll be hearing exciting news coming out of DJI soon.
But with that many in question, will DJI make it for the holidays?