Given the controller hack worked so well I've put together this simple mod for the drone itself. It basically gets the internal aerial outside and underneath the chasis for better line of sight.
Flip the drone. Disconnect the camera and battery and remove all the screws. There are 5 in each arm and 4 in main body. The screwdriver that comes with the Syma works great.
Flip it back over. You can now prize the top from the drone. It should come off relatively easily and expose the main circuit board.
Now look for the short black wire on the board that goes nowhere. This is the antenna. If you trace it back to the board it you should see the letters 'ANT' where it connects.
Next, punch a small hole through the chassis using the screwdriver. Twist it like a drill a few times and then push through. Carefully feed the antenna into the hole.
It should protrude about 1-2cm from the base of the drone. Place a drop of glue on the inside to keep it firm.
All going well you should now be finished. Reconnect the battery and test everything is ok before reassembling the drone. It should now have better line of sight with your remote and give you a boost in range.
P.S. If you're anything like me you'll have stupid phantom screws left over.