How to Enable Local Data Mode for DJI Fly App

In this guide, you will learn here How to Enable Local Data Mode for DJI Fly App. DJI has recently announced that its various control apps will be equipped with a so-called “Local Data Mode” for additional data security. This mode is now available for the DJI Fly app and is intended to provide more privacy in the hobby segment.

A few weeks ago, various security reviews had once again cast a bad light on DJI about the data security of the Chinese drone manufacturer’s apps. Specifically, the DJI Go 4 app and later the DJI Pilot app was accused of collecting and forwarding user data.

DJI had already provided detailed comments on these safety reports. The world market leader in civil drones announced that its DJI Go 4 and DJI Fly apps would be equipped with a Local Data Mode. This mode is now available in the DJI Fly app.

What does the Local Data Mode do?

The Local Data Mode is a function that was previously reserved for the DJI Pilot App and thus for the drones in DJI’s Enterprise segment. It is a switch in the app that blocks all network connections between the app and Web on the smartphone or tablet.

Pilots should be sure that no data of their flight and their drones are sent to a third server / DJI during and after the flight.

So if you want to be entirely sure that no data leaves your smartphone, you can now activate this mode for Mavic Mini (review) and Mavic Air 2 drones (review). A corresponding function is planned for the Go 4 app, but there is no exact schedule date.

With which update DJI has (secretly) provided, the Local Data Mode for the Fly app is not yet clear to us. The changelogs of the iOS version do not show anything about it.

How to Enable Local Data Mode for DJI Fly App?

The Local Data Mode is activated directly from one of the menus on the app’s start screen. It should not matter which drone is connected to the Fly App.

The switch for the local data mode is hidden a bit deeper in the app’s settings. DJI will be forgiven because the Fly app is designed and developed with a very slim design without question. But if you want to use the Local Data Mode, you can still do so with just a few clicks.

Step 1: First, the “Profile Menu” is called up in the middle at the bottom, represented by a figure symbol. Next, the menu item “Settings” must be selected.

Step 2: In the following step, select the “Privacy” item on the side. The button to activate the Local Data Mode is located at the top of the opening settings page.

Step 3: Now activate the Local Data Mode via the switch. Read the text with the resulting functional restrictions carefully and confirm the activation at the end.

Step 4: In the last step, the app will ask you to restart the Fly App to activate the Local Data Mode. The app will then lock itself. Now you have to close the app manually via your smartphone app manager and start it again.

The local data mode is now active.

What are the restrictions in local data mode?

Since the local data mode blocks all connections between the app and the Internet, all functions that require an online connection are naturally omitted. This includes, among others:

  • Online maps in the lower-left corner of the Fly App in the camera view
  • Firmware updates of drone, controller, and flight batteries
  • Update and activation of flight safety databases (GeoFence 2.0)
  • Synchronization of flight data with the DJI account
  • Real-time updating of flight safety data
  • Access to third-party providers (e.g., live streaming via social media, etc.)

Suppose you don’t need these things, or at least don’t need them during the flight. In that case, you can try the local data mode without significant restrictions during the actual flight operation.

However, this mode clearly increases data security at the expense of the range of functions. DJI has already announced that there will be a notable exception for the map function, but this must be activated separately. This way, map data can still be used in the camera view during the flight, even if the local data mode is activated. But this option is not yet available.

How to disable the Local Data Mode?

Precisely the same way you have activated it. Just turn off the switch under “Privacy.” A message will warn you that the internet connection will be restored immediately. If you deactivate it, no restart is necessary.

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