Up-and-coming drone uses to watch out for
Drones, they’re being used for everything these days. Here’s some examples of how we’ll see them being utilized for in the future.
Although drones might have initially been written off by some as just a pricey fad, their growing prominence among both hobbyists and professionals alike has proven that drones are here to stay. But despite this increasing popularity, many still only see them as fun flying toys or photography aids.
Although the future of drones will surely be bringing us uses that we can’t even imagine right now, here are four up-and-coming trends that any drone enthusiast should be following.
The ability to easily equip drones with cameras has made aerial photography one of the fastest growing drone services. However, drone photography goes far beyond the common cinematic-style shots that might come to mind. The small size of drones and their ability to be controlled from afar allow them to access regions that are either too dangerous, too remote, or too large for traditional human survey teams.
These drones can provide researchers with a wide variety of data as well- from simple photographs to 3D mapping to surface-penetrating radar, all giving scientists and others access to invaluable information in record time. Some people are even using this new technology to try and solve ancient mysteries- one team in particular used a combination of drone mapping and satellite technology in an attempt to locate Genghis Khan’s mythical lost tomb.
Fans of any racing video game have long dreamt of the day when they’d be able to participate in a real-life equivalent. And while we might not yet have been able to master the physics that can turn those games into a reality, drone racing comes in at a close second in terms of adrenaline induction. Drone racing allows its participants to experience an intense, first-person point-of-view flight thanks to a camera mounted on the drone that uses radio to stream all the harrowing twists, turns, and even crashes to a set of special goggles, giving the pilot the feeling of flying themselves.
Some drone races are done in traditional groups, while more advanced obstacle courses with narrower paths and more complicated obstacles are conducted through individual time trials. Current fans of drone racing, as well as those looking to get into it, should be excited about the future of the sport. Increases in technology are expected to bring about clearer image streaming, drones even more adapt at navigating labyrinths at high speeds, and an overall boom in popularity for this relatively new sport.
Drone delivery has long been a dream for tech enthusiasts and couch potatoes alike, and many a college student has longed for the day where pizza, burritos, or even booze could almost instantly be delivered to one’s doorstep with the click of a button. But FAA regulations, as well as a plethora of other logistics problems for large companies like Amazon have kept that dream from becoming a reality in the US. Nonetheless, some smaller companies, such has Flirtey, have started to lead the way in remote delivery service.
The Nevada-based startup, which made the first FAA-approved urban drone delivery back in March of this year, also completed the first delivery trip to-and-from an offshore vessel at the end of June, showcasing the technology’s potential for not just convenience, but medical relief as well. And while Americans may have to wait a bit longer for this to become an everyday occurrence, those in Europe and Asia will be seeing it even sooner- softer regulations there mean that medical drone delivery has already been in use for some time, and commercial delivery will soon be following.
Event organizers looking to take their performance to the next level will soon be able to do so quite literally with the advent of drone choreography. Although the functionality of drones was embraced early on and lead to the development of some of the other services mentioned here years ago, the idea of drones serving a more aesthetic purpose is still catching on. However, a few companies, such as Intel, have fully embraced the potential of decorative drones and have been working to develop this further.
Drones can be programmed to fly in an almost infinite number of patterns and can be equipped with LED lights or similar devices to create stunning displays, and can provide a safer, reusable alternative to pyrotechnics. Despite the upsides, however, drone choreographers still have some kinks to work out. Those that fly too low may risk being grabbed or knocked out of the air by a rowdy spectator, while fans of the rock band Muse may be all too familiar with the story of one of the band’s prop drones that crashed into the audience during a show earlier this year.