DJI ends support for the DJI Phantom 4 Drone

Jul 17, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

DJI ends support for the DJI Phantom 4 Drone

Jul 17, 2023

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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It looks like the time of the DJI Phantom is almost at its conclusion. DJI has officially ended support for the DJI Phantom 4 as of July 15th and the DJI Phantom 4 Pro Obsidian Edition from July 1st.

DJI ended support for the Phantom 2 and Phantom 3 4K drones in September 30th, 2022. With support for the two Phantom 4 models being over, this leaves only the DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2 (buy here) on DJI’s official lineup, although most retailers show it as being out of stock.

The Phantom had a good run, but its time is over

The DJI Phantom 4 was released in March 2016 and abruptly ended its run in January 2017. This was followed up by the Phantom 4 Advanced in April 2017. The DJI Phantom 4 Pro Obsidian Edition in April 2018. DJI unofficially killed the Phantom drone market with its first Mavic drone release in September 2016.

At that time, the Phantom line still offered some significant advantages over the Mavic, but the folding design and portability of the Mavic made it an instant hit. Over the next few years, the Mavic line progressed quickly, and 2018’s DJI Mavic Air pretty much sealed the coffin for the Phantom.

The discontinuation statement is the standard generic text from DJI that covers all of its products.

Because electronic products are affected by technological developments and changes in usage requirements, each generation of products has a fixed life cycle. In order to continuously provide you with premium product and service experiences, DJI regularly optimizes resource allocations to promote the development and application of new products and technologies. We hereby inform you that we will stop providing support services for certain products and their accessories through periodic assessments.

There’s no date set yet on when DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2 support will end, but I don’t expect we’ll have to wait too long. If you want to see the complete list of end of support products and upcoming end of support products, see the DJI website.

The future looks bleak for the Phantom line

The capabilities of DJI’s latest Mavic 3 Pro (buy here) far exceed anything that any DJI Phantom drone could do. With its compact, foldable form factor, it’s unlikely that we’ll ever see the company release another drone in the Phantom lineup.

Currently, the only drone left in DJI’s Phantom product line is the DJI Phantom 4 Pro V2. It’s still listed on the DJI website with a “Buy it now!” button, except you can’t buy it now. Clicking the button takes you to their store, where it’s still available to buy for $1,599 with the standard RC. Retailers such as B&H list it as “Temporarily out of stock” with a 4-6 week lead time.

I doubt we’ll ever see a Phantom 5, or even a Version 3 of the Phantom 4 Pro, for that matter. It looks like it’s Mavic all the way.

If you’re still flying a Phantom, it’s probably time to update your drone.

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John Aldred

John Aldred

John Aldred is a photographer with over 20 years of experience in the portrait and commercial worlds. He is based in Scotland and has been an early adopter – and occasional beta tester – of almost every digital imaging technology in that time. As well as his creative visual work, John uses 3D printing, electronics and programming to create his own photography and filmmaking tools and consults for a number of brands across the industry.

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7 responses to “DJI ends support for the DJI Phantom 4 Drone”

  1. Planned Obsolescence Avatar
    Planned Obsolescence

    Re: “If you’re still flying a Phantom, it’s probably time to update your drone.
    Why? Is it just because of how bigger-better-cheaper-smarter-greater the new drones are or does “DJI ends support” implicitly mean that phantoms are bricked at some point in time because they don’t get the OTA no-fly-area-updates or other vital information they require for taking off?

    1. Kaouthia Avatar
      Kaouthia

      DJI isn’t the only company that makes drones. Nowhere did I suggest buying a newer DJI drone. :)

      1. Planned Obsolescence Avatar
        Planned Obsolescence

        Please answer the question.

        1. Kaouthia Avatar
          Kaouthia

          You do understand the concept of the word “probably”, right? It’s something for those individuals to look into and judge for themselves. Some may want to stick with what they’ve got. Some might not know the current state of drones vs what they have and may want to research the latest information. It’s just a reminder for them to look into it. Their ultimate conclusion is their own responsibility and I don’t care what they do one way or the other.

          I now you’re just trying to twist my words and be a troll troll, but nowhere did I suggest that everybody SHOULD go to a newer drone, nor did I tell them to get a DJI Drone. So get off your angry little pedestal. :)

          1. Planned Obsolescence Avatar
            Planned Obsolescence

            First of all I see you’re having trouble to understand why someone would want to know the exact reasons behind why a terminated support of something would be equivalent to an immediate need for replacement.

            Indeed I understand the concept of the word “probably”. It means not knowing for sure but persuasively hinting at something because there is a high chance it would be possible or necessary.

            I also know that writers are a little thin skinned when it comes to questions about their reasoning and people asking for solid proof. You are no exception there. I would probably not call it word twisting but rather a semantic rearguard action on your side, still failing to explain what might be the reason why it is (quote): “probably time to replace your drone”, despite the simplicity of the question.

            In multiple occurrences already I have seen you quickly feeling personally insulted and then retaliate with ad hominem attacks. The added emoticon does not change a thing here. Perhaps you want to reflect on the topic a bit more, especially being one of DIYP’s lead writers and moderator.

            Actually, I do not care a flying f* about the products of a semi-monopolistic company such as DJI and how it wants to create a revenue stream by planned obsolescence, continuously mothering customers with restrictions and mandatory updates.

            But I care abouts sustainability and informed purchase choices. In that respect your article was not helpful at all. Neither did it explain why exactly one would want to update his/her drone after DJI ended support, nor did it suggest an alternate manufacturer.

          2. Kaouthia Avatar
            Kaouthia

            I’m not thin skinned, I just think you’re an idiot, intentionally (but badly) attempting to troll.

            The reasons will be down to the individual. It is up to each of them to judge their own circumstances. If it were me (which it isn’t), I’d consider upgrading.

            You have some SERIOUS issues, my friend. I suggest you seek some professional help.

  • Keaton Foley Avatar
    Keaton Foley

    Not me still chilling with my phantom 3 😂