This post also appears in sUAS News ‘The Market


“It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” – attributed to Yogi Berra

I was recently asked in an interview to discuss four or five trends that I see as major drivers in the commercial drone industry today and what manufacturers and service providers might focus on in the future. That sounds simple enough for an industry analyst, but sometimes predictions are as hard as trying to determine where that quote came from. It’s not an exacting science, but it’s certainly better than palm reading.

That said, here are six trends I think will drive key opportunities and challenges for drone manufacturers, service providers, and investors for 2016 and beyond. They are:

  1. Fidelity
  2. Sensors
  3. Mobility
  4. China Incorporated
  5. Virtual and Augmented Reality
  6. Competition


One of the major trends we are seeing in the commercial drone industry is the desire for more fidelity – that is, better image and video resolution...

Continue reading here: http://droneanalyst.com/2016/01/29/six-trends-driving-the-commercial-drone-market-in-2016-and-beyond/

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  • Moderator

    I think manufacturers are head in the sand about ASTM F-38 they didn't believe regs would come and now they are here. They have kept their eyes off ASTM F-38 whilst the current military vendors run it. The requirements are more than any platform other than those built for the military can make. STANAG 4586 for the GCS, Mil Spec batteries etc etc. I don't know how the FAA could orphan all the 333's currently held but stranger things have happened in this mess. 

    I hear they are going to get something out in June almost regardless of it making sense. 

    Training and the cost of it will be the thing that catches folk out. The cost of a PPL will look like chicken feed when there are only 20 schools in the country offering approved RPA flight training. They will be able to charge what they like.

    Everywhere in the world where real regs come in that has happened. (Until there is enough competition in the market) If your business can absorb the cost of expensive training there is some logic to being in the first to market if not its best to wait.

    If I were in the US I would get a 333 just to put me in the line for 107 rules. 

    I'm a bit off topic here aren't I whoops. I must take my rant hat off.

    On what will drive manufacturers, some will try and catch up with the Inspire which IMHO is all most folks will ever need or for really serious business other companies should try and catch up with the Ascending Technologies Falcon 8.

  • 7. Elimination or draconian regulations for hobbyists to make way for Big Drone.

    If that weren't the case, DJI, 3DR, Yuneec and other interested parties would be supporting John Taylor in his lawsuit against FAA.  

  • I still hear rumors of confusion at the FAA over the proposed rules.  Yes, F-38 coming but, I don't see where it's driving small drone manufacturers features or requirements yet.  Perhaps it is.  Any examples?

  • Moderator

    ASTM F-38.....

  • Distributor

    Great article as usual, excited to seeing much better integration of systems and sensors in 2016.

    It will be interesting to see how the commercial drone operator sector changes in the USA when the new rules become Law.

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