How does R1 use GPS?

Skydio R1 has built-in GPS, which enhances the autonomous flight experience with features that enable it to return to your phone’s last-known location if needed. Here are two features which highlight R1’s GPS capabilities:

Return to Phone

At any time during flight (either following a subject or flying manually), tapping the Return to Phone icon within the Skydio app instantly directs R1 to return to your phone’s last-known GPS location.


Not only is this a handy way to quickly return R1 to your location, but it can be helpful if you’ve lost line of sight with R1, or if it has lost you while tracking.


  • The GPS accuracy of many phones can vary from model to model, so R1 may return to a location slightly offset from your own.
  • If you tap Return to Phone and keep moving, R1 continues to update the GPS location until it reaches your general location.

Track with Phone Location

This feature is ON by default but can be disabled within Settings (we recommend leaving it on). When R1 can’t see the tracked subject, the R1 will switch over to using GPS to attempt to find you and keep following. This graphic explains the various options available within Settings:


If you have any questions or need any additional help, please feel free to contact us.