Back in May, I wrote about how technology vendors are developing enterprise support technology for drones, as well as how drones fit into the typical network infrastructure.
The enterprise drone market is expected to grow and for good reason: Drones are a cost-effective way for enterprises to deploy technology for a number of uses. Drones can go places humans can’t go, making them great for surveillance, security, remote site inspections, news reporting, visual data collection at disaster sites, filmmaking, land surveying and other tasks.
One of the most obvious uses for drones is as delivery vehicles. Google and Amazon have been working on drone-delivery prototypes for a few years, though nothing has gone commercial.
Fortune has an in-depth article discussing how a company that is synonymous with delivery plans to use drones. UPS has been working with a startup on technology that would enable drones to fly medical items to rural areas around the world. Jonathan Vanian writes:
In late September, the package delivery giant and a drone startup, CyPhy Works, said they had successfully tested a drone delivery, in which a flying robot delivered an asthma inhaler to a children’s summer camp on a small island off the coast of Massachusetts.
A UPS executive tells Fortune that the company doesn’t have a timeline for when drone delivery will gain a foothold in the consumer market. “I don’t think anyone has,” he says. The sticking points are still-evolving Federal Aviation Administration regulations, as well as drone battery life and durability.
Fortunately, those limitations are less relevant for other types of drone uses. For example, UPS is looking at ways to use drones to track inventory in its huge packaging facilities, something that doesn’t require FAA involvement or put the drones in peril of running out of batteries in the middle of a long delivery flight.
The drone market is in its nascent stage, but the clear business and operational benefits of these flying machines will drive adoption rates, despite regulatory and technological hurdles.
Does your enterprise have a compelling use case for drones?