Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), commonly known as drones, have a great deal of potential to be explored and exploited for commercial applications.
Major industries, government agencies, and other organizations are all actively assessing the opportunity for drones to disrupt the market and create innovative business models. Rapid advances in technology and economies of scale have enabled drones to be prototyped and commercially launched at an affordable price. Furthermore, due to emerging cloud-based applications and data services, the commercial drone industry is enjoying a period of rapid growth.
According to a new report from Tractica, worldwide commercial drone hardware and services revenue will increase from $792 million in 2017 to $12.6 billion by 2025. While the majority of revenue currently comes from hardware sales, the balance will shift in the next few years and, by the end of the forecast period, Tractica anticipates that drone-enabled services will represent approximately two-thirds of the total revenue mix.
“A number of major industries are seeing strong value propositions in utilizing drones for commercial use,” says research analyst Manoj Sahi. “Some of the key industries include agriculture, film, media, oil & gas, energy & utilities, insurance, and real estate & construction, among many others.”
Sahi adds that the top commercial applications for drone-enabled services include Filming and entertainment; Mapping, Aerial assessments; Prospecting; Disaster relief; Early warning systems; Environmental monitoring; and Data collection and analytics.