DJI Ryze Tello drone review

It is a toy? Is it a camera drone? Is it a junior coder's dream? Can the Ryze Tello really be all this without compromise?

5 Star Rating
DJI Ryze Tello review
(Image: © Adam Juniper/Digital Camera World)

Digital Camera World Verdict

The Tello sits somewhere between an entry-level ‘toy’ drone and a lightweight photography drones, and manages to make some of the best aspects of that pricier category accessible to many more – and reasonably safely – while having its own distinct character too. Better still, it’s the center of its own world of free and cheap apps, from alternative control tools to drag-and-drop programming languages making this a successful STEM tool too. What “kid” wouldn’t want to command their own drone? The fact that DJI tech is included in this device makes it feel like a bargain the whole family will be fighting over.


  • +

    Impressive stunts built in

  • +

    Budget-friendly pricing for pro features

  • +

    Supplied with propellor guards for safety

  • +

    Can be used with game pad

  • +

    App market

  • +

    5 megapixel camera


  • -

    Camera can’t be tilted, even physically

  • -

    MicroUSB charging feels retro now

  • -

    Video not recorded to a card in device

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The Ryze Tello isn’t about bringing the latest tech, so much as it is about providing an experience which is rewarding (or, let’s be honest, fun) without emptying the wallet. There is a swathe of toy drones coming in at around $30 / £25 or less but few offer the kind of functionality or build quality of the Tello.

When it first appeared DJI had no sub-250g drone, but since the Mavic Mini has heralded a whole new category, some might well ask is there still a reason for DJI to contribute tech to a device which seems so distinct from the rest of its offering. The answer is there – this is a different price category and a different form factor. So the next question we’ll need to answer is whether it’s one with value, and if so, for who?

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Adam Juniper
Managing Editor

With over 20 years of expertise as a tech journalist, Adam brings a wealth of knowledge across a vast number of product categories, including timelapse cameras, home security cameras, NVR cameras, photography books, webcams, 3D printers and 3D scanners, borescopes, radar detectors… and, above all, drones. 

Adam is our resident expert on all aspects of camera drones and drone photography, from buying guides on the best choices for aerial photographers of all ability levels to the latest rules and regulations on piloting drones. 

He is the author of a number of books including The Complete Guide to Drones, The Smart Smart Home Handbook, 101 Tips for DSLR Video and The Drone Pilot's Handbook