There's no general threat using Google Assistant with Go 4 app. DJI Drone could kill…

Joined
Oct 7, 2018
Messages
22
Reaction score
13
Age
51
Location
Lancaster, CA
Your DJI Drone could kill you or someone close to you.
Or at least do some serious damage to you or people near you!

Please send this serious warning to as many places as possible.
If you are flying with an Android device and initiate Google Assistant with “Ok Google” or “Hi Google” and you are flying your DJI drone with DJI go app your aircraft becomes totally out of control.
Take a look at this video.
I have been in constant contact with DJI, almost 20 emails for many weeks and they refuse to put out a general warning to DJI go app users not to engage Google Assistant.
Their response has been this.
“Kindly noted that I have updated the flightrecords as you provided back on MAR 21ST to the Field Application Engineering team…”
“As you mentioned, on your previous emails, it is unsafe for the people around. We appreciate your effort however to provide us with the needed records for our designated developers to review the flight and confirm your claimed issue with the DJI GO 4 app when used with the Google Assistant.”

DJI know there is a problem and a serious one. I know they are working very hard at solving the problem, but they are refusing to warn the public.

Please pass this warning to as many as you can.
Certainly this issue needs everyone involved in flying DJI products to be aware of. I want to mention this from my own experience flying the Phantom and using an iPad mini: DJI GO App is an extremely capable and very demanding App. I used to have a lot of “green screens” and CPU overloads until I watch a video in YouTube where they explained the complexities of what is happening behind scenes while you fly and they made a couple of good recommendations. Set the mobile device you fly with in Airplane mode when you fly. Don’t run ANY other App or leave running any other task while flying. I followed those two recommendations and stopped having issues. Think about it, your mobile device is talking to your controller, running HD video downloads in real time, sending commands via controller to the drone, receiving GPS positioning from the drone and showing it in the screen and many other things I don’t have room here to tell you. So, think about it and be safe.
AD
 
Joined
Nov 25, 2017
Messages
90
Reaction score
37
Age
35
From the title to the original post, this thread is sensationalism at its best

Quite.

The app and the phone is just an interface for issuing commands and viewing video. You don't need it to fly and it doesn't issue RTH location. Google Assistant doesn't operate on any frequency and at best it would spike the CPU usage of the phone causing DJI Go to stall or freeze, or even trigger WiFi scan for network etc on the phone which /could/ cause 2.4Ghz interference.... I reeeeally doubt it though.
That would have no "control" over the drone - In a normal scenario the remote/transceiver controls the drone and sends RTH commands regardless of an app.
You can turn on modern DJI drones and using the LED flashing sequences identify when RTH and good satellite coverage has been acquired.

Seeing as GA doesn't in anyway interface with DJI SDK or the Go app, and considering apps in general are isolated from each other I have no idea wtf is going on.
 
Last edited:

sar104

Dic mihi solum facta, domina.
Premium Pilot
Joined
Mar 22, 2014
Messages
5,305
Reaction score
2,700
Location
Los Alamos, NM.
Certainly this issue needs everyone involved in flying DJI products to be aware of. I want to mention this from my own experience flying the Phantom and using an iPad mini: DJI GO App is an extremely capable and very demanding App. I used to have a lot of “green screens” and CPU overloads until I watch a video in YouTube where they explained the complexities of what is happening behind scenes while you fly and they made a couple of good recommendations. Set the mobile device you fly with in Airplane mode when you fly. Don’t run ANY other App or leave running any other task while flying. I followed those two recommendations and stopped having issues. Think about it, your mobile device is talking to your controller, running HD video downloads in real time, sending commands via controller to the drone, receiving GPS positioning from the drone and showing it in the screen and many other things I don’t have room here to tell you. So, think about it and be safe.
AD

Actually I don't really think anyone needs to be aware of it, because the OP appears to be the only one who has ever reported it. If this were a real issue it would be widespread.
 
Joined
Jul 1, 2016
Messages
252
Reaction score
65
Age
80
It’s too hard for me to believe. I flat out don’t believe it. Doesn’t mean it isn’t true though. I cant understand how a transmission from your phone that isn’t being used to fly the drone could control it. Worst case scenario would be interference with the control signal at which point the Mavic or Phantom would initiate RTH as with any other transmission signal loss.
No way it could control via the RF link. But Google Assistant could control the drone by sending commands through the USB connection to the controller. Good practice and safety issues dictate that you clear all apps from the phone/tablet before starting GO4 and flying. Using a virtual assistant while flying is preposterous.
 
Joined
Feb 17, 2019
Messages
50
Reaction score
12
Age
75
Location
San Diego, CA
What I did not say today or in the past is that two days ago I tried to fly a Mavic 2 with my phone and did not initiate Google Assistant (GA) and the aircraft went ballistic. Spirlied rapidly to 200 meters. Took me ten minutes to get it down by restarting my Samsung Galaxy 9+ and RTH.
GA was obviously active in the background. So if you use GA on your Android device and don't even initiate it, it is still a hazard.
Once you do use GA it is very difficult to disable.
This has happend with a Mavic 2 and a Phantom 4 Pro V2.
I now have to turn my phone off before take off.
I have mentioned that this could be a one off with my phone. Although DJI tell me their engineers have confirmed the conflict and warned me not to use GA while flying with DJI go app.
Thanks for posting this. I use my Android phone hotspot for wifi while flying my P4P with iPad as the display. Do I need to change a setting on the phone while flying this way?
 
Joined
Jun 7, 2017
Messages
749
Reaction score
514
Age
65
Location
Georgia, US
Thanks for posting this. I use my Android phone hotspot for wifi while flying my P4P with iPad as the display. Do I need to change a setting on the phone while flying this way?
Have you had any problem so far?
Do you use Google Assistant?
While flying, do you say "OK Google"?

If NO to all the above, I'd say you're probably fine

BTW, I fly with an Android tablet with WiFi and BT turned ON; an Android phone in my belt holster with WiFi and BT turned ON; and a spare Android phone with a 'data only' SIM turned ON, WiFi hotspot and BT turned ON, and sitting on the dash of my work van... never had any issues. But then again, I do not use Google Assistant - at all... as if that would have anything to do with my Phantom going crazy (it never has).
 
Last edited:
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
Messages
7,844
Reaction score
3,113
Location
Australia
No way it could control via the RF link. But Google Assistant could control the drone by sending commands through the USB connection to the controller. Good practice and safety issues dictate that you clear all apps from the phone/tablet before starting GO4 and flying. Using a virtual assistant while flying is preposterous.
It seems you missed part of the puzzle- the phone running GA wasn't connected to the controller. Go was running on a different device without GA installed.
 
Joined
Jun 7, 2017
Messages
205
Reaction score
70
Age
56
First you said it happened 6 or 7 times and you didn't disabled the Google app.And that is Dji's fault? And when the app disconnects the drone should do whatever command you have set.Either land or return to home.Drama and drones don't mix.No-one has ever been killed by a drone and no-one overdosed on marijuana.Sounds like someone just wants point out what it obvious.You turn off notifications when you fly including stupid Google. It's pretty straight forward and not a Dji drones are killers situation.Really dude?
 
Joined
Feb 24, 2018
Messages
180
Reaction score
77
Age
65
Location
Cow Hampshire, USA
Reviewing the video in more detail, I couldn’t tell what actually caused the drone to spin off as it did. However, the initial issue was secondary to the operators continued attempts to reconnect and rapidly move the throttles. After the first issue, the drone did go into RTH mode and was lining up to return when the operator reconnected, turned off RTH and went through another series of rapid throttle movements.

This happened several times as the operator attempted to recover control of the drone, when it was in fact preparing to RTH or beginning its RTH home sequence. In thisQ example, simply letting the drone complete its RTH sequence would have been the logical recovery step, as each connect, reset and rapid movement, put the drone further away and less in control.

What’s interesting is that once the brightness command is issued, the drone veers left, then hovers (2:27). We are not able to see the controls, but a moment after (2:29) we hear a beep, and the drone accelerates and continues left gaining altitude.

The op then tries to click on the DJI Go App, while the drone can be heard above (2:42-2:48). The video then clips out and back in. At 3:09 through 3:13 the drone climbs from 48m to 100m, I do not see stick command to support this. The drone then enters RTH mode and starts to land. The OP then reconnects and stops the cycle, attempting the regain control. This’s happens several times.

It does seem that a command to climb is interpreted by the controller and sent to the drone. It may be google assist that creates this issue while in the DJI GO app. If we can get the flight logs downloaded onto this site, that could confirm the theory.
It’s too hard for me to believe. I flat out don’t believe it. Doesn’t mean it isn’t true though. I cant understand how a transmission from your phone that isn’t being used to fly the drone could control it. Worst case scenario would be interference with the control signal at which point the Mavic or Phantom would initiate RTH as with any other transmission signal loss.

This has been a great thread for me. It has sparked my interest in the BT-300 glasses. I will need to try a pair first though- I need readers for extreme close work (electronics soldering etc/ not so much reading) and am wondering if the display will be clear being so close to the eyes.
Yes, they are quite clear, and a company “Rochester Optical” also makes prescription lenses for them. I have been using them for a year now and love them. My eyes need lenses for distances as well as my PID “
pupil” distance was different from the BT-300s. Rochester made me prescription lenses that integrate with the glasses like they came from Epson! On a side note, if you’re at all interested in these I may be selling mine, as I’ve been stricken with an illness that is preventing me from flying and am reluctantly getting out of the hobby I love so much....
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
Messages
7,844
Reaction score
3,113
Location
Australia
Yes, they are quite clear, and a company “Rochester Optical” also makes prescription lenses for them. I have been using them for a year now and love them. My eyes need lenses for distances as well as my PID “
pupil” distance was different from the BT-300s. Rochester made me prescription lenses that integrate with the glasses like they came from Epson! On a side note, if you’re at all interested in these I may be selling mine, as I’ve been stricken with an illness that is preventing me from flying and am reluctantly getting out of the hobby I love so much....
Thank you for the advice. I tried a pair in store on Wednesday- I wear readers when I’m doing really fine work (+1.5) but the BT-300’s are razor sharp out of the box. Lucky for me I’m inside the specifications as far as the PID range goes. Have been flying with them and am very happy. Also installed Netflix, VLC and a few other apps. The apparent resolution looks like it’s better than 720p. Must be the nice colour and contrast.
 
Joined
Aug 11, 2017
Messages
267
Reaction score
125
Age
64
I do not know what is going on when I initiate GA using the Go app. All I can think of is that GA uses the same frequency band that the the r/c is communicating with the aircraft. If this is so then DJI need to isolate or change frequency channels. And also if this is what is happening then it does not matter what mode you fly in or what DJI drone you are using WV Rootman. Its happens when I flew a Mavic 2 and Phantom 4 Pro v2. I don't have an original Mavic so I don't know about that.
As far as I am aware With The Birds the Go app does not respond to voice commands its GA that reacts to voice commands.
I'm struggling to give credence to this being an issue involving Google Assistant. First off the RC is connected to your phone via USB - it can only be attached as a media device or as USB storage. GA makes no use of any "frequencies". The RC has to be connected as a media device since we're communicating with it. The only thing I can think of with a BIG stretch of imagination is that GA thinks the remote or the GO4 software is something it can talk to and is attempting to give it commands that are somehow being interpreted oddly. I still think those are pretty slim odds.
Have you tried this experiment far far away from your location to eliminate any localized interference?
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2017
Messages
551
Reaction score
531
Age
63
Location
Perth, Australia
I agree Brojon, I seem to be the only one to have had and issue with GA. That has to lead me to believe there is an issue with my particular gear/set up. Although I have yet to see someone with a SG 9+ test it. It has been mentioned that both GA and the DJI go 4 app take up huge resources on processor and memory.
I have tired it in a "desert"
and it went crazy again, not on this vid.
But to be honest I have given up on experiments. Way to scary.
I have done some experiments with the props off and there is an odd thing with my side micro usb port on the Mavic 2 r/c. When ever I use this port connecting to the M2 r/c the camera always points up, no matter what I do with the left rocker. I tried this today.
Using the underside standard USB port on the r/c connecting to a SG 9+ or 8+ there is never an issue. Although I stil disable GA.
What is more perplexing is it has recently happened to my P4P v2.
DJI "field engineers" or "R&D team" are still trying to fathom out what happend.
Now I just turn my phone off while I fly with the Epson BT 300 glasses which are far superior to any device where you have to look up and down all the time.
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
Messages
7,844
Reaction score
3,113
Location
Australia
I'm struggling to give credence to this being an issue involving Google Assistant. First off the RC is connected to your phone via USB - it can only be attached as a media device or as USB storage. GA makes no use of any "frequencies". The RC has to be connected as a media device since we're communicating with it. The only thing I can think of with a BIG stretch of imagination is that GA thinks the remote or the GO4 software is something it can talk to and is attempting to give it commands that are somehow being interpreted oddly. I still think those are pretty slim odds.
Have you tried this experiment far far away from your location to eliminate any localized interference?
I'm struggling to give credence to this being an issue involving Google Assistant. First off the RC is connected to your phone via USB - it can only be attached as a media device or as USB storage. GA makes no use of any "frequencies". The RC has to be connected as a media device since we're communicating with it. The only thing I can think of with a BIG stretch of imagination is that GA thinks the remote or the GO4 software is something it can talk to and is attempting to give it commands that are somehow being interpreted oddly. I still think those are pretty slim odds.
Have you tried this experiment far far away from your location to eliminate any localized interference?
Do you realise that the device running GA wasn’t connected to the RC?
 
Joined
Jan 4, 2016
Messages
7,844
Reaction score
3,113
Location
Australia
I agree Brojon, I seem to be the only one to have had and issue with GA. That has to lead me to believe there is an issue with my particular gear/set up. Although I have yet to see someone with a SG 9+ test it. It has been mentioned that both GA and the DJI go 4 app take up huge resources on processor and memory.
I have tired it in a "desert"
and it went crazy again, not on this vid.
But to be honest I have given up on experiments. Way to scary.
I have done some experiments with the props off and there is an odd thing with my side micro usb port on the Mavic 2 r/c. When ever I use this port connecting to the M2 r/c the camera always points up, no matter what I do with the left rocker. I tried this today.
Using the underside standard USB port on the r/c connecting to a SG 9+ or 8+ there is never an issue. Although I stil disable GA.
What is more perplexing is it has recently happened to my P4P v2.
DJI "field engineers" or "R&D team" are still trying to fathom out what happend.
Now I just turn my phone off while I fly with the Epson BT 300 glasses which are far superior to any device where you have to look up and down all the time.

You know there is a monumental difference between trying to determine a cause for an outcome and determine if something happened at all. At best DJI might be trying to see an anomaly captured in the log files.

In the meantime to the extent you maintain any interest in reality you need to be looking wideroto have any hope of understanding what happened.
 
Joined
Jan 20, 2017
Messages
182
Reaction score
46
Age
65
Location
Rockford, IL
Your DJI Drone could kill you or someone close to you.
Or at least do some serious damage to you or people near you!

Please send this serious warning to as many places as possible.
If you are flying with an Android device and initiate Google Assistant with “Ok Google” or “Hi Google” and you are flying your DJI drone with DJI go app your aircraft becomes totally out of control.
Take a look at this video.
I have been in constant contact with DJI, almost 20 emails for many weeks and they refuse to put out a general warning to DJI go app users not to engage Google Assistant.
Their response has been this.
“Kindly noted that I have updated the flightrecords as you provided back on MAR 21ST to the Field Application Engineering team…”
“As you mentioned, on your previous emails, it is unsafe for the people around. We appreciate your effort however to provide us with the needed records for our designated developers to review the flight and confirm your claimed issue with the DJI GO 4 app when used with the Google Assistant.”

DJI know there is a problem and a serious one. I know they are working very hard at solving the problem, but they are refusing to warn the public.

Please pass this warning to as many as you can.
That's Why I fly with my Apple iPad 2018 model.... Never had even the slightest glitch !
 
Joined
Jun 4, 2017
Messages
551
Reaction score
531
Age
63
Location
Perth, Australia
It is true that Apple mobile devices are far more DJI friendly than Android but I refuse to buy a Apple mobile device, it is all closed down OS. You don't know where stuff is or how much space you have. I have been given, by my employer, many, mobile Apple devices and gave them all back. For Laptops and none mobile devices (part from the higher powered laptops) they are the best for video and sound management. I love my Macbook Pro, screams through editing, even H.265. DJI purposely designed their drones for Apple for future hooking up with Apple in some sort. On reflection I should have kept some of them just for flying.
 
Joined
Jan 1, 2017
Messages
842
Reaction score
376
Location
Albany, NY
I'm jumping in here late, but I can't see how Google Assistant could affect a drone unless DJI added support for it.

The way Google Assistant works is that it takes your spoken commands and sends the audio stream to Google, where the voice to text processing is performed. It identifies key words to identify the task that you want to do. When you say "OK Google, raise the brightness", it identified "brightness" as a system setting that it control and it recognized "raise" as the action. It then sends that information back to your phone. Google Assistant then makes a API call to raise the brightness.

If raising the brightness via a voice command would cause a drone to go out of control, so would manually raising the brightness.

Google Assistant can only interact with apps that have registered Actions that can invoke specific features within the app. For example I can say "OK Google, play the rolling stones on Spotify". Google Assistant knows that Spotify supports it and it sends "play the rolling stones" to the Spotify app. But Google Assistant can't actually control the Spotify directly, it can only send a command to it. I haven't seen any indication that DJI has added any support for Google Assistant. And even if they did, you would have to specifically identify the Go app as the recipient of the command. And it would something useful enough that DJI would advertise it. Something like "OK Google take a picture with dji go" or "OK Google, "tell dji go to return to home"
 
  • Like
Reactions: With The Birds

New Threads

Forum statistics

Threads
140,274
Messages
1,446,084
Members
102,038
Latest member
Ruud Scheidel