All I want for Christmas is ... a flying robot

Story highlights

  • Could flying robots invade the market for presents this Christmas?
  • Toys 'R' Us names remote controlled flying toys as "top gifts" this year
  • Both novelty and high tech devices are becoming increasingly affordable

With less than a month until Christmas, toy retail experts are predicting that Santa's sleigh won't be the only thing flying through the night sky this festive season.

Both international toy store Toys 'R' Us and the UK's Toy Retailers Association have named remote control flying toys among their "top toys" for Christmas 2013 -- and that's just the beginning of the flying robot invasion. Aerial bots of all sizes -- from miniature flying fairies to full-scale surveillance aircraft -- could be appearing under Christmas trees come December 25.

Read: The flying robot that likes to crash

It's evidence that the high tech materials and components developed for complex flying robots are filtering down creatively to the new world of "civilian Unmanned Aerial Vehicles."

It wasn't long ago that easily controlled multifunctional quadcopters were only seen in the hands of tech university researchers and military specialists. Now, cheap, lightweight motors and stability-providing gyroscopes are available to anyone, opening up flying robot technology to the world of toys, as well as providing new ways for shutterbugs to make home movies and shoot aerial photos.

Check out the slideshow above to see some of the amazing flying robots that are available for kids and adults alike. And consider giving Rudolph a break this year by giving a gift that can make its own way down the chimney.