From conceptualization to actual application, drone makers worldwide have taken the theories of books and sci-fi movies and turned them into real-life applications. This gave birth to the phenomenon of Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs). Drone manufacturers have been significantly influenced by the accelerated technological advancements and developments in the field of smart electronics, and today drones are at the forefront of a smart-generation technological shift.
The consumer drone industry has expanded in the last few years and they play significant roles in business, civic, and military affairs. The drone industry is still very much in its infancy. However, there are many drone companies that are punching above their weight and distinguishing themselves from their competitors. Some drone companies are known for making drones that are cheap and reliable, while other brands are best known for making drones that can provide longer flight time and superb stability and handling. These high-end drone companies are producing drones that are perfect for taking cinematic videography footage and performing other task that up until recently were only capable by using light aircraft and helicopters.
What’s the best drone company in the world? That’s a difficult question to answer because it’s impossible to track each and every drone company in such a fast-moving industry. However, we’ve done our best to highlight the best drone companies and manufacturers and to give you a sense of who is doing what in the drone industry.
This article is going to be helpful for those who want to fly drones just for fun, for those who want to fly them commercially, and for those who want to hire someone who flies drones.
List of Best Drone Companies to Watch in 2018
We’ve tried to categorize these companies based on their core offering for easy navigation. Here are different types of drone companies:
- Hardware Companies – Companies that make drones and drone accessories
- Drone Industry News Companies – The best companies for breaking news and in-depth analyses.
- Flight Operation Management – Platforms for tracking, storing, sharing, and analyzing flights and flight data. This includes tools for team collaboration.
- Data-Processing Tools – Enable drone pilots to use all the data that their drones gathered.
- Marketplaces, Databases and Funders – Places for drone pilots to find work. There are also companies that fund other drone companies.
- Miscellaneous – Other companies that are associated to drones.
DJI is headquartered in Shenzhen, widely considered China’s Silicon Valley and their offices can now be found in the United States, the Netherlands, Hong Kong, Beijing, Japan and Germany. This drone company benefits from direct access to the suppliers, raw materials, and young, creative talent pool necessary for sustained success. DJI is a privately owned and operated company that focuses on their own vision, supporting creative, commercial, and non-profit applications of their technology.
DJI have grown from a single small office in 2006 to a global workforce of over 6,000, and today DJI products are redefining industries. DJI Innovations is the current leading name in manufacturing civilian drones by capturing an approximately 70% share of the drone market. Professionals in filmmaking, energy infrastructure, search and rescue, conservation, agriculture and more trust DJI to bring new perspectives to their work and help them accomplish feats faster, safer, and with better efficiency than ever before. They are known mainly for their Phantom series, which has become the quintessential drone for new to intermediate pilots and videographers. Also, the simultaneous launch of the Inspire Two and Phantom 4 Pro in late 2016 was huge news in the industry.
Yuneec is headquartered in Kunshan, Jiangsu, China, and has offices in North America, Europe and Asia. Their humble beginnings started with innovation and accessibility in the aircraft industry before creating the first commercially successful, RTF fixed wing RC airplane. Yuneec started out as a manufacturer of remote-controlled aircrafts for model-making enthusiasts, and eventually, they transitioned into their increasingly popular aerial video drones. Coming from this background, they recognise that safety is the cornerstone of the usability and capability of their products, and this belief extends to the empowerment of the people who keep us safe every day, from the Coast Guard and Law Enforcement to Fire and Rescue.
Yuneec introduced the world’s first RTF (ready-to-fly), out-of-the-box drone in 2014, and today they manufacture over 1 million units a year. Yuneec launched the Typhoon H520 in early 2017. This drone is designed specifically for commercial applications, as well as a huge customer service initiative to provide high quality service.
Parrot is a French company, headquartered in Paris. Parrot designs and markets a prestigious line of high-end wireless multimedia products in collaboration with some of the world’s most well-renowned designers, and they currently employ more than 750 people worldwide and generate the majority of its sales overseas.
Today, Parrot makes some of the best drones on the market, and their Bebop drone is always a favorite in lists around the web. The 2.0 version is even more robust than the original. This is an advanced drone with lots of features. It features a 25 minute battery life and powerful motors for flight in greater altitudes.
Insitu (https://insitu.com/) is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Boeing Company. They are headquartered in Bingen, Washington with offices in California, Oregon, the United Kingdom and Australia. This company started from humble beginnings in a small Silicon Valley garage in 1994, and today Insitu is a pioneer in the design, development, production and operation of cost-effective, high-performance unmanned aircraft systems.
Insitu runs the gamut of drone services, providing software for extracting intelligence from raw data gathered by drones, hardware in the form of commercial-focused drones, and drone-related services for commercial applications, such as reconnaissance and surveying. Insitu has aimed to become the gold standard in the unmanned aircraft industry and succeeded in doing so thus far thanks to the vision of their leadership and the talented base of employees. Their ScanEagle (https://insitu.com/information-delivery/unmanned-systems/scaneagle) drone was designed for aerial imaging, with diverse applications such as force protection, environmental monitoring, oil or gas pipeline inspection, disaster relief and agricultural assessment.
Follow Insitu: Twitter (https://twitter.com/insitu_inc?lang=en)
Autel Robotics (https://www.autelrobotics.com/) is headquartered in Bothell WA and their main mission is to inspire creativity. With their team of industry professionals with years of engineering experience and a genuine passion for technology, this company has been delivering solutions for new aerial exploration through their market-leading quadcopter and camera drone technology.
Focusing on transforming complex technology into simple solutions, creating easy-to-use aerial devices for photography/filming and imaging, Autel Robotics is always thinking of the consumers and how they will use their products. Throughout the design and engineering process, this company strive to provide cost-effective, quality-assured and innovative products to consumers worldwide.
Commercial drone maker Kespry (http://www.kespry.com/) was launched in 2013, and they are headquartered in Menlo Park, California. Kespry manufactures drones that are designed from the ground up to solve your most challenging business problems and scale across teams with limited drone expertise, and they are made specifically for capturing, viewing, and analyzing aerial imagery and survey data. Their drones are equipped with a lightweight high-performance airframe and obstacle avoidance sensors, and they also include high quality dual frequency GNSS receivers that are designed to eliminate multipath errors and mitigate electronic interferences common in industrial settings.
With Kespry, you can scale across hundreds of work sites with no additional resources or training required, and their customers include aggregates, surveying, construction and mining companies.
Follow Kespry: LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company/3340907) / YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCg1LDd2Ldl5le2Pud0Dy_Zw)
Aeryon Labs, Inc.
Aeryon Labs, Inc. (https://www.aeryon.com/) is headquartered in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. This company is trusted by public safety, energy and military customers around the world for small Unmanned Aircraft Systems (sUAS). Their field-proven, industrial-grade sUAS solutions set the standard for real-time, secure aerial intelligence across a wide range of applications, from inspecting critical infrastructure to investigating traffic incidents to executing tactical missions.
The Aeryon team has a broad range of experience in fields including: telecommunications, digital video compression, video processing, mechanical and mechatronic system design and software development, computer and electrical engineering – as well as knowledge and expertise in image compression and robotics. In addition to their sUAS units, Aeryon Labs, Inc. are also known for their video processing platform, and their “ruggedized” payload systems for commercial drone camera work, designed to enable the various uses their products support.
EHang (http://www.ehang.com/) is headquartered in Guangzhou with branches in Shanghai, Beijing, Düsseldorf and California. EHang is the world’s leading tech company of intelligent aerial vehicles and has about 300 employees led by a senior management team from 21Vianet Group, Microsoft, Lenovo and Foxconn.
Inspired by the mission of “Let humankind fly freely like a bird”, this company has created GhostDrone 2.0 (http://www.ehang.com/ghost2.0.html). This drone is considered to be the world’s easiest-to-use intelligent drone. This drone has some amazing features, such as app control, designed so that “smart algorithms” kick in to reduce human error during flight; dual sensors, so that a backup kicks in if the first sensor fails; and self-protection, which makes it automatically return in case of lost communication or low battery.
Today, EHang has become a frontrunner in the fiercely competitive drone industry and is rapidly occupying the consumer market.
Flytrex (http://www.flytrex.com/) was founded in 2013 and is headquartered in Tel Aviv. Flytrex specializes in developing drone delivery solutions for the commercial market. This company aims to simplify the delivery experience while enhancing efficiency, by lowering the overall cost and shortening the delivery time. They claim that they can tailor the system to suit the needs and requirements of many different industries and businesses. Flytrex wants to prove that drones are a realistic option for on-demand logistics and offers a fully autonomous, on demand drone delivery service.
The Flytrex Sky delivery drone uses a cloud-based system that stores and shares flight data. This drone can hold small objects for deliveries. These drones can handle packages that weigh up to 3 kg and are a bit larger than a shoebox. This means that deliveries are currently best suited for smaller orders or restaurant food. Flytrex also has a Messenger app (http://www.flytrex.com/products/flytrex-sky/messenger-app/). This app allows users to request and track deliveries.
Aerialtronics (https://www.aerialtronics.com/) is a Netherlands-based designer and producer of unmanned aircraft systems. They design, produce and service drones to provide full aerial data solutions for civilian purposes, and they also offer customizable unmanned systems that enable businesses to easily survey, inspect and analyse aerial data in real time.
The Aerialtronics Altura Zenith is one of the most versatile commercial drones on the market. It combines state of the art technology with a flat, compact, and lightweight design. With a weatherproof fuselage and the widest payload and sensor compatibility (dual vision cameras, gas sniffers, radiation detectors) on the market today, Aerialtronics’ systems can be applied to a wide variety of segments including: Research, Agriculture, Surveying & Mapping, Inspection, and Safety & Security.
Follow Aerialtronics: YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHy-HM_gwFY7ePTfaYVoJrw) / Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/AerialtronicsEurope) / Twitter (https://twitter.com/Aerialtronics)
With more than 100 employees, senseFly (https://www.sensefly.com/home.html) is an industry leader in mapping drones. This is a young, dynamic Swiss company founded in 2009 by a team of robotics researchers. senseFly is the commercial drone subsidiary of Parrot Group that develops and produces aerial imaging drones for professional applications.
Their proven drone solutions simplify the collection and analysis of geospatial data. This allows professionals in humanitarian aid, engineering, agriculture and surveying to make better decisions, faster.
CyPhy (http://cyphyworks.com/) was founded in 2008 and was formerly known as The Droid Works, Inc. and changed its name to CyPhy Works Inc. in December 2009. It is based in Danvers, Massachusetts. CyPhy is a robotics company that develops aerial robots and UAVs for mining industries, law enforcement, entertainment, agriculture, oil and gas, and defense. Their drones are specific and purpose-built, targeting applications and problems that can only be solved by robotic design. Their drones are reliable, accessible, and practical robots designed to help real world issues, and they are designed with both commercial and government uses in mind.
Christine and Zenon Dragan launched Draganfly Innovations Inc in 1998 and they are recognized as being at the forefront of technology for over 19 years. Draganfly Innovations (http://www.draganfly.com/) is an award-winning, industry-leading manufacturer within the commercial UAV space. They are based in Saskatoon, Canada and they hand-make their system in North America. They create quality, cutting-edge unmanned vehicle systems (UVSs) and software that revolutionize the way people do business, and they specialize in public safety applications, education/research, industrial inspection and aerial photography. Their Draganflyer quad-rotor was the first public-service drone to save a human life.
Flyability (http://www.flyability.com/) is a Swiss company that creates a pragmatic, easy use of flying robots to solve today’s challenges and change the way we work, play and communicate. They build safe drones for operating indoors, in complex and confined spaces, and in contact with people, and they created Gimball (http://www.flyability.com/product/), the world’s first collision-tolerant flying robot capable of remaining stable after contact, and safe to fly close to people. Their collision-tolerant systems allow safe and easy access to places out of reach of current drone systems and enable new interactions and services with UAVs and solve the two most critical problems of one of the fastest growing industries: collision and injury risks. Flyability used this technology to develop Elios specifically for industrial inspection professionals. Flyability won the UAE Drones for Good Award (https://www.dronesforgood.ae/) in 2015. This award came with a whopping $1M prize!
Freefly (http://freeflysystems.com/) is an American corporation that was founded in 2011, and the company headquarters are in Woodinville, Washington. This company designs, manufactures, and markets camera movement systems and camera stabilizers used in cinematography, and they are the inventor of the Movi Gimbal Stabilizer.
A small, dedicated team of filmmakers released an aerial platform called the CineStar in 2011, in a garage just outside of Seattle. This platform became the system of choice for aerial cinematographers. They’ve also been responsible for pulling surfers via drones (http://dronelife.com/2016/09/12/freefly-drone-surfing/) (coolness factor through the roof for that!) In 2013, they introduced the MōVI to the world. This platform expanded the abilities of the CineStar and redefined the world of handheld cinematography. In 2015 Freefly unveiled their new, highly professional drone – the Freefly ALTA (http://freeflysystems.com/alta-8). This drone has been so popular that the Alta has become synonymous with Freefly, and is commonly used interchangeably with the company’s name.
Intel (http://www.intel.com/content/www/us/en/technology-innovation/aerial-technology-overview.html) is an American multinational corporation and technology company headquartered in Santa Clara, California. This company was founded on July 18, 1968, by semiconductor pioneers Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore.
This company is leading the industry in terms of innovation and creating new technology to meet developing needs, and it is pushing the boundaries of drone technology to power business transformation. From construction and energy to inspection and surveying, their high-powered professional drones are helping collect data for greater insights across industries around the world.
Intel both creates drones and the systems required for other companies to create their own drones, and most recently they’ve teamed up with Disney to create aerial light shows that can replace fireworks displays.
GoPro (https://shop.gopro.com/karma) is an American technology company founded in 2002 by Nick Woodman. They are headquartered in San Mateo, California, U.S. The company focuses on the connected sports genre, developing its line of action cameras, mobile apps and, later, video editing software.
GoPro had a failed first launch of their Karma drone in October 2016. However, they had a successful relaunch in spring of 2017. GoPro is of course known for making the world’s most versatile cameras. These cameras are some the best in the industry for taking aerial photos and videos using UAVs, and they enable you to share your life through incredible photos and videos.
Action Drone USA
Action Drone Inc. (http://www.actiondroneusa.com/) is headquartered in San Diego, California. This is a global manufacturing and solutions drone company for industrial markets, and they design unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), develop new strategies, and deploy our global certified pilot network operations.
They develop their own high tech small unmanned aerial systems (sUAS) to help worldwide clients, and produces portable industrial drones to help companies get jobs done efficiently and safely. They manufacture rigs that are easily compatible with third-party software. All their products are carefully designed, assembled and tested out of San Diego, California.
Workswell (http://www.workswell-thermal-camera.com/workswell-wiris-en/) is a Central European trading and manufacturing company that focuses in the advancement of machine vision and touch-free temperature measurement. The company is headquartered in the Czech Republic and they are renowned worldwide due to our innovative thermographic products, which include NDT thermal imaging system ThermoInspector, thermal WIC cameras and the Workswell WIRIS thermal imaging system for drones. Products and systems from Workswell are also utilised in the manufacturing process for numerous European car manufacturers, such as BMW, Skoda, Renault and Kia.
Workswell WIRIS 2nd gen is currently the most state-of-the-art thermal imaging system. It is designed for commercial unmanned aerial vehicles. This is a revolutionary product in its category that allows for real-time sensor control via a standard RC radio transmitter that communicates directly with the drone.
Follow Workswell: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Workswell-899939036783023/) / Twitter (https://twitter.com/workswellcz?lang=en)
FLIR (http://www.flir.com/home/) is the global leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of thermal imaging infrared cameras that was established in 1978. This company is based in Wilsonville, Oregon, United States, and employs 2,741 people worldwide.
This company brings innovative sensing solutions into daily life for drones through thermal imaging systems, advanced heat detection systems, measurement and diagnostic systems, locator systems, and visible light imaging systems. FLIR’s imaging solutions are not limited just to use on drones, and their products improve the way people interact with the world around them, increase energy efficiency, enhance public safety and well-being, and enable healthy and entertained communities.
Ambarella (https://www.ambarella.com/) was founded in 2004 and employs 680 people. The company is based in Santa Clara, California, United States, and it is the leading developer of low-power, high-definition (HD) and Ultra HD video compression and image processing solutions.
The company’s products are used in a variety of professional and consumer applications including automotive video processing solutions, drone cameras, wearable cameras, and security IP-cameras. Most notably they create chips specifically designed to allow cameras on drones to function better in high-contrast or low-light situations, and produce much smoother video, and their compression chips are also used in broadcasting TV programs worldwide.
Cheerson (http://www.cheersonhobby.com/) is an extremely popular drone manufacturer that was established in 2003 and its predecessor is Shantou SLH Mould Toys Company Limited. The company pays attention to technology innovation, and after more than 10 years’ development of drones, Cheerson has grown into China’s well-known brand.
They developed the Cheerson CX-10. This is the smallest drone to date and a top seller on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Cheerson-2-4GHz-6-Axis-Quadcopter-Bright/dp/B00KXZC762). Their products apply to agricultural plants protection, entertainment aerial photography, communication investigation and rescuing exploration, etc. There’s no question that Cheerson drones are some of the absolute best drones for first-time fliers and they are perfect for both indoor and outdoor flight. Products manufactured by Cheerson Hobby have excellent quality, performance and innovation, and they get a very good reputation in the global R/C toy and drones field.
Hubsan (http://www.hubsan.com/) is headquartered in Shenzhen, China, and they have their offices in North America. The company is established in 2010 and they have more than 100 high-quality young engineers in the R&D department. Hubsan is quite well known among the drone flying community for making drones that are both – beginner-friendly and professional.
Hubsan currently develops, manufactures and sells small quadcopters, helicopters, and planes with auto-pilot capabilities. Their X4 series are excellent starter drones, and they are the best-selling series for Hubsan. Their two drones, the NANO Q4 and HUBSAN FPV X4, are marketed as two of the world’s smallest drones.
Follow Hubsan: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/hubsan/)
Established in 2010, UDI (http://www.udirc.com/) is a rapidly growing and dynamic company dedicated to designing, manufacturing hobby grade products at an affordable price. UDI has a talented and professional team in Shenzhen R&D center where they create larger sized quadcopters and multicopters for consumers. In this center, they keep up with the latest development and seek more innovation in the category, and every year they release a variety of creative and popular consumer drones with their own design and ideas.
The company came into Radio Control market by offering RC helicopters and vehicles. Many of their drones are less than $100 and feature cameras for aerial photography and videography. It is important to note that their products are compliant with CE and US standards.
Follow UDI: Website (http://www.udirc.com/)
Blade (http://www.bladehelis.com/Drones/) is established in October 1985 and they gained popularity with their drone brand, the Blade range of Quadcopters. Blade is owned by Horizon Hobby and is based in Champaign, Illinois.
This company produces quadcopters and mini-drones for the consumer market, and any product that bears the Horizon Hobby name was developed by a team of in-house experts, many of whom have decades of experience in the hobby. Many of their drones are great for newbies. They offer people cheap ways to learn more about aerial photography. Blade also manufacture drones that boast of some highly superior features called SAFE. This technology makes the flying of the aircrafts safer and unproblematic.
Follow Blade: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/BladeRC1/)
Sky Viper (http://sky-viper.com/) is established in 2010 and they specialize in durable and affordable drones that provide an unforgettable experience. They create drones for general recreation, aerial video, and racing. Sky Viper has a flight simulation app (in Google Play (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.skyrocket.dronesimulator2016) and the Apple Store (https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/sky-viper-flight-simulator/id1135441810?mt=8)) that gives you access to the entire fleet of Sky Viper drones. This app is great for those pilots interested in purchasing their drones but want to learn a little more about how the drone might handle. You can practice and learn how to control and fly Sky Viper drones in the simulator. After that, you can apply your new skills in real life.
Follow Sky Viper: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/SkyViperDrones/)
Syma Toys (http://www.symatoys.com/) is a China-based company, located in Shantou. This company manufacturers consumer drones, quadcopters, helicopters, and even an RC car/quadcopter hybrid (http://www.symax9.com/) for over 10 years. This company has been an innovator and industry leader in the manufacture of high quality radio controlled quadcopters and drones, and they have taken an innovative and visionary approach to advancing flight experience for kids.
Syma Toys is best known for its remote controlled helicopters. However, they have recently broken into the drone market with the highly popular X5C. This is a great starter drone for beginner pilots who want to learn how to fly a drone. Their X5C-1 Explorer 2015 version is one of Amazon’s best selling drones.
Follow Syma Toys: Website (http://www.symatoys.com/)
Embention (https://www.embention.com/en/) is an international UAS company founded in 2007 that develops professional performance unmanned vehicle components and complete autonomous systems. The company is based in Alicante, Spain and it also designs and manufactures high quality customized UAVs.
With a high level of expertise in the control of unmanned platforms – surface vehicles (USV), helicopters, hybrids, multirotors, fixed wing aircrafts, blimps – Embention is a leading company in the UAV industry. The company’s main product is the “Veronte Autopilot”. It is ITAR free, and is also available in a triple redundant version.
AguaDrone (http://www.aguadrone.com/) is the world’s only 100% waterproof drone. It is designed specifically for fishing, water sports, and a variety of industrial applications. This drone features a quick change accessory system and an entire family of accessories that include: gimbals for the 360 degree camera and a GoPro; a 360 degree waterproof camera; OS Pod, an open source pod that allows users to easily and quickly attach their own device, providing connection with the battery and receiver; Fish Pod, a remotely controlled payload release that can carry your bait and line and drop it where the fish are; and Find Pod, Wi-Fi enabled sonar fish finder that sends images to you Smartphone or handheld device.
AguaDrone can land in and take off from fresh and saltwater and is predominantly used for fishing. However, this drone is modular and adapts to the end-user’s needs, and its unofficial slogan is “the Swiss Army knife of drones.”
Walkera (http://www.walkera.com/) is established in 1994 and is located in Guangzhou City, China. This company has developed into a professional Aero-Model manufacturer that unifies product research and development, customer service, marketing, and production. Their products are exported to more than 100 countries and regions.
They focus on the research and sale of small, personal consumption aerial models. However, they also offer one-stop solution for energy field, the measurement of the land resources, fire protection, agriculture, etc. Walkera established two wholly-owned subsidiaries in North America and Europe.
Walkera offers a range of drone models, originally selling quadcopters like the Walkera QRX 350 (http://amzn.to/2bGIDTz) and QR LadyBird V2 Mini Quadcopter. However, they now seem to be concentrating more on drone racing, with models like the Walkera Runner 250 Racing Drone (http://amzn.to/2mvCQS8) and the Walkera Rodeo 150 RTF FPV Quadcopter (http://amzn.to/2npQ4nF).
Based in Champaign, Illinois, Hobbico (http://www.hobbico.com/) is the world’s largest retail and wholesale distributor of hobby products. The company was founded in 1971 and distributes about 30 brands of hobby products including several proprietary product brands, including Heli-Max, Estes Proto X, Dromida Ominus along with many other RC models. Hobbico began with just two people and now employs over 650 people.
Drone Industry News Companies
The Drone Girl
The Drone Girl (http://thedronegirl.com/) is a drone-focused news site that was created with the intent of exploring drones and how they can assist the world via the imagery they produce. This site is run by reporter Sally French (a regular contributor to MarketWatch and The Wall Street Journal, among several other news sites), and is one of the premiere sources of information for drone enthusiasts on the internet. The Drone Girl is an outlet to publish aerial photos, videos, and stories about the evolution of drones. It is important to note that Drone Girl does not fly drones for commercial purposes or operate any type of aerial photography service.
Follow The Drone Girl: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/Drone-Girl-494198707403757/) / Twitter (https://twitter.com/TheDroneGirl)
DroneLife (http://dronelife.com/) is the leading worldwide site that provides the latest drone news, legal precedents, YouTube videos and product releases to help drone enthusiasts and professionals stay informed about everything related to drones. DroneLife is the trusted news source that helps companies to get the word out with branding, content, and lead generation.
The FAA (Federal Aviation Administration)
Based in Washington, District of Columbia, The FAA (https://www.faa.gov/uas/) regularly updates its website and sends out a newsletter with the latest information about drone regulations and related news to provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world. The FAA warns unauthorized drone operators that if they interfere with emergency response operations, they may be subject to significant fines. Go to their drone-focused webpage (https://www.faa.gov/uas/) and click the envelope icon with the plus sign on the upper right hand corner of the page to subscribe to their drone-related newsletter.
sUAS News (https://www.suasnews.com/) was started by UAS pilots and professionals in 2008, and it is one of the leading sources for news and information in the drone industry. As you can see, they started in 2008, which is a lifetime ago in the fast-moving world of drones, and shows a good deal of forethought.
Drones at Work
Drones at Work (http://www.dronesatwork.com/) is a news site for the commercial drone industry created by commercial drone developer Kespry and managed by Rosalie Bartlett, the creator and editor of “Commercial Drone News”. Their goal is to highlight all the exciting developments of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) across a range of solutions in surveying, safety, mining, inspection, delivery, construction, agriculture and others. Anyone in the drone industry can easily follow Drones at Work on the web or by signing up for the Weekly “Drones at Work” email (http://eepurl.com/bSvXJD).
Drone Analyst / Skylogic Research
Drone Analyst (http://droneanalyst.com/) is a research, content, and advisory services firm for the commercial unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) industry that helps constituents make critical business decisions by providing research-based insights on commercial drone markets. This firm covers the entire commercial ecosystem for unmanned aerial systems (UAS) with research, content, and advisory services, and their in-depth research studies are based on qualitative and quantitative surveys. Their direct and prescriptive views and recommendations help provide UAS participants the knowledge necessary to make informed financial and operational decisions, and you will like what we have to say if you enjoy alternative interpretation and welcome opposing views that get to the heart of the subject matter.
Their focus is not the military use of drones, but on the civilian market in which commercial business is conducted. Their three target constituents are:
- Manufacturers, suppliers, and business service providers
- Buyers of UAS technology and services
UAV Expert News
UAV Expert News (http://www.uavexpertnews.com/) is run by drone industry professionals and their team features both original and curated UAV content from around the world to spread the good word about drones and UAV technology. This company is one of the leading sources for UAV news, information and education, and they feature industry news, new products, tips, reviews and the best in aerial videography and photography.
Flight Operation Management
AirMap (https://www.airmap.com/) is based in Santa Monica, California and is the leading global provider of UTM technology for the drone ecosystem, and hundreds of partners and millions of drones rely on AirMap’s data and services for safe and efficient drone flight. Their Digital Notice and Awareness System™ (D-NAS) delivers situational awareness to drone operators and airspace stakeholders, and over 125 airports have implemented D-NAS to manage real-time digital notice of nearby drone operations. Their cutting-edge technology transforms airspace below 500 feet to provide trustworthy, reliable and accurate low-altitude communication tools and navigational data to the drone industry. AirMap collaborates with industry leaders such as senseFly, Intel, DJI and others. They share their data in the flying apps those companies provide.
Flyte (https://www.flyte.ie/) is a platform to help pilots manage their operations, and at present, pilots operating worldwide use Flyte to create intuitive and comprehensive flight reports and operational management documenting their work. In addition to logging, planning, and reporting support, Flyte provides full and up to the minute information on digital NOTAMS/TFRs and ground hazards, as well an airspace integration through AIRMAP. This enables pilots to integrate into national airspace and communicate with ATC. This platform allows you to plan your flights no matter where you are in the world, whether you are in the car at the end of a busy day filming, or out on site with a client.
DroneLogbook (https://www.dronelogbook.com/homePage/index.php) is a flight management platform for UAV pilots that was founded by a team of experienced operations managers and software developers who have a passion for flying UAV’s. They focus on automating log collections, by supporting more than 20 different UAV log file types, and they also have features to manage equipment, location, incident, maintenance, battery, and pre-flight documents.
DroneLogbook has been supporting a spectrum of UAV pilots, from hobbyists to large companies since its inception. Today, this company serves thousands of UAV operators of all sizes with their scalable solutions. The private label offering is used by several key manufacturers, insurance providers, energy companies, logistics companies, educational institutions, and large media companies to support their drone operations.
With a mobile app (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.nvdrones.dashboard.flightequipmentmanager&hl=en) available from Google Play and web/mobile integration, NV Drones (http://www.nvdrones.com/) offers next-generation drone management and analytics for the 21st century pilot. These features allow pilots to upload flight logs from the most popular drones and software, such as DJI, Yuneec, 3DR, DroneDeply, and more. This platform offers the easiest, most effective way to manage your drone operations.
Follow NV Drones: Twitter (https://twitter.com/nvdrones?lang=en)
KittyHawk (https://kittyhawk.io/) was founded in 2015 and is based in San Francisco, California. This is a one-stop shop for flying, logging, and coordinating UAV operations, and it unifies the mission, aircraft, and data to empower safe and effective drone operations. They have a strong focus on providing value for their pilots. This manifests in the usability of their platform and the fact that they allow for unlimited logging of hours.
SkyWard (http://www.skyward.io/) is a flight operations management platform designed for drone operators, and it is considered to be the best-in-class drone operations software. This company was founded in 2012 and is headquartered in Portland, Oregon. Their platform can be used for large teams to coordinate efforts, and also for “solopreneurs” to plan and track flights. This platform is perfect for companies that use drones as a tool for doing business. SkyWard is an easy-to-use flight planning and logging solution with robust capabilities, and that’s why businesses across the globe use it to save time and scale faster.
DroneDeploy (https://www.dronedeploy.com/) is the largest drone data platform that offers powerful cloud-based drone software that’s compatible with any drone. Founded in 2013, DroneDeploy is the fastest, easiest, most powerful solution available. DroneDeploy is the software platform for drone mapping that captures imagery, processes maps & 3D models, and interprets your data. DroneDeploy is the natural choice for your work because it turns any off-the-shelf drone into a professional mapping and survey tool. Here are a few industries that they serve – agriculture, mining, construction, inspection, surveying, and service provider. The company is based in San Francisco, California.
PrecisionHawk (http://www.precisionhawk.com/) empowers enterprise leaders with aerial data and analytics, and their mission is to “build the airspace platform delivering better answers, faster while enabling safe, low altitude flight.” PrecisionHawk offers everything from data processing to 3D terrain mapping, and they are transforming the way business is done.
The PrecisionHawk platform supports both multi-rotor and fixed wing drones from top vendors. This allows you to select the technology that best meets your specific needs. Check out PrecisionHawk’s DataMapper (https://www.datamapper.com/). This software suite that converts UAV imagery into actionable information and works with all leading UAV platforms. By linking PrecisionHawk’s DataMapper software platform to DJI’s commercial-grade drone hardware, they now offer a complete agricultural analytics solution.
Based in Boulder, Colorado, Agribotix (http://agribotix.com/) is the agricultural intelligence company that provides software to help people use drone technology in agriculture. They are singularly focused on agriculture and they make it easy for you to succeed with agricultural intelligence services. Their core business is making data processing software to analyze drone-collected agricultural images, with the goals of helping farmers increase yields and maximize the bottom line while reducing their environmental footprint. Whether you fly one of their complete drone and data processing solutions or choose your own agricultural drone in combination with their FarmLens™ data processing service, they are here to support you.
Headquartered in Lausanne, Switzerland, Pix4D (https://pix4d.com/) provides unmanned aerial vehicle image processing software. They have their offices in China and the United States. This company was founded in 2011, and they want to provide the best possible tools for more exciting and efficient work. Their software has been committed to creating professional, georeferenced maps and models from drone imagery. This software automatically converts aerial images into 2D mosaics and 3D models. Pix4Dag, Pix4Dmodel, Pix4Dbim or Pix4Dmapper Pro solutions are meant to be tailored to any industry or workflow on cloud, desktop and mobile platforms.
Skycatch (https://www.skycatch.com/) is the largest and most reliable High Precision 3D platform and their mission is to “capture the world’s data and create visual intelligence to help people operate smarter, safer, and faster than ever before.” Skycatch is trusted every day by some of the largest energy, mining, and construction companies in the world, as well as small businesses. They build drone data software solutions and provide actionable data using UAVs to help construction engineers and managers fine tune their operations. They are based in San Francisco, California.
SLANTRANGE (http://www.slantrange.com/) is considered to be the most powerful information tool the farm has ever seen and they produce the complete chain of software and hardware tools required to add agricultural intelligence to your drone anywhere in the world. Their systems create valuable new agricultural metrics through an innovative combination of accurate, calibrated, multispectral sensors and an advanced in-field analytics. Their unique approach allows users to fly at only 20% overlap, process imagery in ~10 minutes after landing without a network connection. This platform produces a unique set of data products that go well beyond NDVI, such as yield potential, canopy closure, weed maps, true plant counts, and custom spectral filters with Smart Detection.
Redbird (http://www.redbird.fr/en/) is based in Paris, France and is a pioneer in the acquisition and analysis of aerial data collected by UAVs. Cardinal (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aodva1RtOcg) is their advanced cloud-based platform. This platform saves costs, ensures safety, and optimizes resources on construction sites, quarries or mines. Their team consists of over 40 professionals from various background and fields of expertise, and their technical team is composed of experts in cloud computing, GIS, remote sensing, photogrammetry, signal processing, and software development. Redbird is now part of Airware, and they’ve also partnered with Caterpillar, the leading construction equipment manufacturer in the world.
Pix Processing’s (http://www.pixprocessing.com/) mission is to facilitate your daily work by offering you easy to use and the most innovative software solutions integrating photogrammetry and computer vision. This company wants to offer software solutions that make your daily work easier, so they created a desktop software application that performs 3D structure reconstruction from aerial and handheld imagery. Their software can be used for 7 main applications – archeology, architecture, insurance, geodesy, the wood industry, agriculture, and mining.
Follow Pix Processing: Website (http://www.pixprocessing.com/)
Avision Robotics (http://avisionrobotics.com/) was founded on the idea of improving people’s life with the help of robotic solutions, and their system is capable of managing large number of autonomous drone missions simultaneously and enables safe UAV fleet operation. The team is comprised of industry experts in artificial intelligence, robotics, aviation, embedded systems, and has extensive experience in the development of modelling and simulation software. They’ve built a powerful platform that controls the navigation and communication of large amounts of drones and robots, which perform different real-life tasks in mining, construction, agriculture and military applications. Their latest innovation is computer-vision based collision avoidance system. This feature enables autonomous UAV operation.
Follow Avision Robotics: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/AvisionRobotics/?fref=photo)
Maps Made Easy
Maps Made Easy (https://www.mapsmadeeasy.com/) created software that helps you create and fly the optimal flight path to make your own maps with accurate, high resolution imagery that they control. Their mapping software includes features such as the only web-based georeferencing tool that aligns images to known points on the ground; stockpile volume measurement that allows users to measure and track stockpile volumes through their web browser using only aerial images; and 3D stitching that is piecing together different images and data points to create a single 3D map.
Follow Maps Made Easy: Twitter (https://twitter.com/MapsMadeEasy)
Esri (http://www.esri.com/) is an Australian company that is responsible for building ArcGIS, one of the most powerful mapping softwares in the world. ArcGIS is a location platform that connects people with maps, data, and apps through geographic information systems (GIS). This platform is accessible to anyone, anywhere, anytime. Esri has partnered with thousands of government and commercial enterprises for more than three decades to deliver Geographic Information System (GIS) and location intelligence solutions. These systems have transformed the way organisations look at opportunity and manage their operations. Esri software is used in a variety of applications, from Fortune 500 companies, to public utilities and tech startups, to national and local governments.
Uplift Data Partners
Uplift Data Partners (https://www.upliftdatapartners.com/) is based in Chicago and it is considered to be the leading drone service provider in construction. They capture and analyze aerial data to deliver construction insights for project performance, and their integrated service model connects drone pilots, BIM engineers, construction site managers, and site surveyors to assist everyone in tracking progress, updating stakeholders and beating budgets.
Uplift drones collect 4-cm accurate 3D data and prevent rework. This increases safety and reduces waste. The Uplift operates one of America’s most experienced networks of certified drone pilots over construction sites, and the company operates in almost 60 locations throughout the United States.
Identified Technologies (https://www.identifiedtech.com/) fully-managed commercial drone solution is used by industrial leaders to increase project visibility and team productivity. They empower ENR 400 companies, including EQT, PJ Dick, Vulcan and Casella, with the ability to track progress on landfills, mines, well pads, and highways in near real-time. Their mission is to provide a new level of transparency and insights for the most difficult project management challenges, and their integrated software provides an array of services, from FAA compliance and flight planning to advanced analytics. They provide 2D data, 3D volumetrics, orthomosaics, as well as progress and cost forecasting and change detection.
Airware (http://www.airware.com/) provides end-to-end solutions that help businesses safely and reliably operate drones at scale, build industry-specific drone software solutions, and comply with government and insurance requirements. It enables autopilot technology, a cloud platform for customizing missions and collecting data, and a Ground Control Station for dispatching drones. World-class enterprises look to Airware to improve worker safety, operational efficiency and productivity. Headquartered in San Francisco, CA, Airware has raised more than $90 million to date from leading venture capital investors including NextWorld Capital, Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, and Andreessen Horowitz, with strategic investments from enterprise customers and partners including Intel Capital, Google Ventures, GE Ventures, and Caterpillar Ventures. Airware also has a European office in Paris, France.
Skydio (http://www.skydio.com/) has over a decade of experience building drone navigation systems using onboard sensors, and they pioneered GPS-denied flight using a broad range of sensing and algorithmic technologies. This company is based in Redwood City, CA, and they are currently developing software to make drones more aware of their surroundings so that cinematographers, surveyors, and other pilots focus on capturing the shots they need rather than worrying about flyaways, crashes, and other mishaps when flying a drone.
Marketplaces, Databases and Funders
Note: The four marketplaces listed below are a good starting place if you’re a U.S.-based drone pilot looking for work.
Up Sonder (https://www.upsonder.com/) is the first peer-to-peer on-demand drone marketplace. It provides drone rentals and commercial drone services by certified pilots for everyone, from individuals who only need a single mission to large corporations. Providers earn extra money by renting out their drone or service. On the other hand, Renters save money and time by renting from an Up Sonder member within their direct area. Up Sonder has partnered with delivery company UberRUSH to deliver rental drones in Chicago, San Francisco, and New York. Combining payment features, messaging, and easy search makes droning easy and fun on Up Sonder.
Skytango (https://skytango.com/pilots/) is based in Dublin, Ireland, and it is the world’s most advanced marketplace for drone pilots and aerial content buyers. For those looking to get their feet wet, they offer a premium model for their platform. There is also a paid pro version for those want more robust features to help make sales for their commercial drone operation. It is important to note that Skytango has partnered with drone insurance providers to make finding insurance smooth, and get a discount in the process.
Air-Vid (http://air-vid.com/) is an online UAV pilot directory where you can hire UAV pilot by searching their worldwide database for a drone pilot for your requirement. You can hire pilots from over 60 countries world-wide for mapping, survey, photogrammetry, videography, search and rescue, real estate, cinematography and more. You can request to join their directory here (http://air-vid.com/wp/lets-connect/) if you’re a drone pilot looking for work.
Based in Los Angeles, California, DroneBase (http://www.dronebase.com/) is the leading nationwide drone services provider for aerial imagery, video, and data. DroneBase allows you to either become a freelance pilot for them or hire a drone pilot to complete a project. They match up each pilot and job based on equipment, availability, and location required. They are the first drone service provider that DJI has invested in through SkyFund. DroneBase is projecting huge revenue growth for 2018, with customers and qualified pilots operating around the world focused on aerial imagery, video, data, and mapping.
Commercial Drone Fund
Commercial Drone Fund (http://commercialdronefund.com/) team with startups to help grow their business and they invest in companies that want financing to help advance their drone technology and grow their business. Investment areas include the following – industry-specific solutions, services, data analytics, software applications, and sensor hardware. Pitches are accepted here (http://commercialdronefund.com/application).
Follow Commercial Drone Fund: Website (http://commercialdronefund.com/)
SkyFund (http://www.skyfund.vc/) is a venture capital firm that is backed by DJI and Accel. SkyFund is a unique initiative that pairs the startup and scaling expertise of Accel , a global venture capital firm, with the technical and product resources of DJI , the leading aerial robotics company. They invest in drone startup companies, and fund UAV entrepreneurs across a variety of application, hardware, peripheral and services categories where UAVs, robotics and intelligent machines can make a meaningful impact.
Follow SkyFund: Twitter (https://twitter.com/skyfundvc)
It is difficult to categorize all of the companies out there because the drone industry is incredibly dynamic and fast-moving. Some of the companies listed here provide services, some provide entertainment. However, these are just a few examples.
Drone Racing League (DRL)
The Drone Racing League (http://thedroneracingleague.com/) is the premier drone racing league, and as Vice Magazine puts it, it “wants to be to drones what the WWE is to wrestling,” A sports and media company, DRL organizes and promotes drone racing around the U.S. (http://thedroneracingleague.com/races/) and the world (http://thedroneracingleague.com/where-to-watch/). Drone Racing League combines proprietary technology, iconic locations, and world-class pilots to create engaging drone racing content with mass appeal. If you think that you might be able to make the cut and be one of their newest pilots, you should check out the DRL racing simulator (http://thedroneracingleague.com/simulator/).
Aerial MOB (http://aerialmob.com/) is based in California and provides drone services and aerial cinematography. They’ve been doing some really innovative work and they have offices in throughout North America in key film production markets of Vancouver, Toronto, New York, and Atlanta. This company has a strong reputation for delivering outstanding, breathtaking drone cinematography on some of the most technically challenging film projects – check out this single-shot two minute video (https://vimeo.com/182592077) they did for Dancing with the Stars. The professional ability and logistics that are needed for this kind of continuous shot are simply mind blowing!
Founded in 1984, Bentley (https://www.bentley.com/) is a global leader dedicated to providing constructors, geospatial professionals, architects, and owner-operators with comprehensive software solutions for advancing infrastructure. Bentley is the creator of ContextCapture. This software allows users to produce big and challenging 3D models that incorporate complex real-world conditions, including scales as big as entire cities, from simple photographs or point clouds, in order to quickly and easily provide context for operations, construction, and design decisions for all types of infrastructure projects. This company has more than $600 million in annual revenues and more than 3,000 colleagues in over 50 countries. Since 2011, Bently has invested more than $1 billion in research, development, and acquisitions.
Follow Bentley: LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/company-beta/4929?pathWildcard=4929) / Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/BentleySystems/) / Twitter (https://twitter.com/bentleysystems)
Based in Berkeley, California, 3D Robotics (https://3dr.com/) has just finished a rocky year in the commercial sector. They shifted their primary focus from making drones for consumers to providing software solutions for industrial drone applications. In March 2016, they launched Site Scan (https://3dr.com/enterprise/features/), the intuitive, powerful, and open aerial analytics platform, which democratizes aerial data collection, enabling anyone to perform physical asset management and analysis at the worksite.
Zipline (http://flyzipline.com/product/) is one of the biggest startups using drones to provide medical equipment and services to remote areas by flying over impassable mountains and washed-out roads. Zipline provides a seamless delivery system at an affordable price and they recently partnered with the government of Rwanda to deliver blood and other much needed supplies to rural villages.
SkySpecs (http://www.skyspecs.com/) designs and builds the highest quality products for its customers’ applications, and they develop technology that is quickly applicable to a wide variety of industries. SkySpecs develops self-sufficient drones to inspect wind turbine blades, and they created Guardian, a drone that avoids obstacles. They developed the technology that makes 15-minute inspections possible. SkySpecs has become the first and only provider of completely automated blade inspections using a drone and highly intuitive software that enables drones to fly, inspect infrastructure, and collect data autonomously, and also allows for repeatability, high-quality data, and safer inspections.
To help farmers get better and more accurate data, Gamaya (http://gamaya.com/) uses hyperspectral imaging technology, which is 10x more powerful than the standard multispectral technique used by the vast majority of drones in the ag drone startup world. Gamaya improves efficiency and sustainability of farming businesses by offering compelling agronomy solutions. They help with early detection of disease and weeds, better prediction and management of risks throughout the growing season, efficient and targeted use of agrochemicals, and they provide targeted and tailored recommendations for optimum management and treatment of your land and crops.
Founded by MIT engineers Nikhil Vadhavkar and Eddie Obropta, Raptor Maps (http://www.raptormaps.com/) is a software company that optimizes produce farming by using tractor-mounted sensors and drones. Based in Somerville, MA, this company makes software to convert drone data into expert deliverables for any industry. Raptor Maps specializes in data processing and machine learning, and provides tools to organize data, perform virtual inspections, and generate reports that seamlessly integrate into the workflows of asset owners. The company has investment from Y Combinator and the Commercial Drone Fund.
DroneBlocks (http://www.droneblocks.io/) offers everything you need (curriculum, support, etc.) to begin a drone programming course or club for your 4th-8th grade students. They combine curriculum with a user friendly iPad app, and layer it on top of best in class drones, and the result is a scalable end-to-end solution for a project based learning environment. DroneBlocks helps educators to quickly launch a drone-based STEM program, and also empowers STEM leaders to educate in the context of unprecedented engagement.
Based in Tel Aviv, Israel, Flytrex (http://www.flytrex.com/) is urban drone delivery service for businesses. This company has created the first cloud-connected drone designed for deliveries, and they are also developing drone hardware tailored for point-to-point or point-to-area delivery. Flytrex has also created a platform to enable drone deliveries aimed at delivery companies or large retailers that want to make deliveries via drones.
Founded in 2009, Sky-Futures (http://www.sky-futures.com/) has mission to reduce risk and improve safety across industries through technological innovation. This company enables enterprise to perform safe and cost effective drone inspections of a variety of vertical infrastructures, including bridges, telecoms, utilities, oil and gas (both onshore and offshore), and renewables. The UAVs collect high definition (HD) video, stills and thermal imagery data. This data is then fed into the company’s proprietary data platform, analysed and delivered to the client as a technical report. Sky-Futures is UK-based company, and has its offices in the US.
Follow Sky-Futures: Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Sky-Futures/125276604214224) / Twitter (http://twitter.com/#!/SkyFutures)
Flirtey (http://flirtey.com/) is the first U.S.-approved drone delivery company, and today they are delivering with drones in the U.S., New Zealand and Australia. Flirtey is the premier independent drone delivery service in the world that helps businesses to unlock new markets, pioneer instant delivery, drive sales, and replace a cumbersome and costly logistics network. This company is interested in working with companies in time-sensitive last mile logistics; including urgent medical delivery, letters and parcels, fast food, online retail, etc.
Follow Flirtey: Twitter (https://twitter.com/fly_flirtey)
Founded by Jeff Bezos in 1994, Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/) is an American electronic commerce and cloud computing company based in Seattle, Washington. Amazon offers a range of products and services through its websites, and it is one of the premier online drone retailers. It is important to note that they’ve also been working for several years on a drone delivery system—Amazon PrimeAir (http://www.amazon.com/b?node=8037720011) service, which is designed to “safely get packages to customers in 30 minutes or less using small unmanned aerial vehicles.” However, it looks like it will still be years before they’re fully operational.
Follow Amazon PrimeAir: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/embeddedsmart/)
Based in Menlo Park, California, Matternet (https://mttr.net/) is a UAV manufacturer that builds intelligent software and world-class flying vehicles. This company developed the Matternet One. This is the first smart drone made exclusively for transportation. Matternet was founded in 2011, and in 2016 they partnered with Mercedes-Benz “to create the integrated delivery solution that will transform how people receive lightweight goods on demand.”
Image in Flight
Image in Flight (http://imageinflight.com/) is based in Rancho Cordova, California and offers site surveying services, the creation of advertising videos, construction support, architectural photography, and a host of other drone applications. Image In Flight provides completed aerial photography/videography packages for your marketing and promotional needs, and is perfect for those who want to show off their new location, equipment or event from every angle.
Measure (http://measure32.com/) was founded to help businesses avoid the operating risk and capital expense associated with running one’s own internal drone operations. With FAA approval (http://fortune.com/2015/09/01/faa-drones-measure-startup/) to fly 324 drones for business purposes, this company offers cost-effective mapping and aerial imaging solutions for customers world-wide. Measure provides your business with the critical data it needs to protect workers, increase productivity, reduce risk and costs, and strengthen operations. Measure serves many industries like energy, AEC, media, telecommunications, agriculture, mining, rail, and more.
Follow Measure: Twitter (https://twitter.com/droneasaservice)
Dedrone (http://www.dedrone.com/en/) was founded in 2014 and is based in San Francisco, California. This company created a piece of drone tracking technology called the DroneTracker (http://www.dedrone.com/en/dronetracker/drone-detection-hardware). This technology uses multiple parameters, such as shape, noise, and movement patterns, to help guard against invasions of personal privacy, potential terrorist attacks, smuggling, and spying. In 2017, the company released DroneTracker 2.5, the enhanced version that is notable for even more powerful RF detection to detect drones by their radio frequency (RF) signatures.
Blue Chip UAS
Based in Newton, Kansas, Blue Chip Unmanned Aerial Solutions (http://bluechipunmannedaerialsolutions.com/) was founded in 2014 by veterans of the military armed forces with 45+ years of military service. This company provides solutions in industries such as agriculture, oil and gas, law enforcement and much more! Their aerial imaging applications include NDVI (Normalized Difference Vegetation Index), cinema, inspection, and photogrammetry. Their mission is to advance public safety, security and environmental health through continual innovation, and they utilize their extensive skillsets adopted over a collective 30+ years in the UAS industry to maximize UAS integration into your business, saving money, increasing capabilities and ultimately increasing your delta.
Headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, DroneView Technologies (http://t.sidekickopen06.com/e1t/c/5/f18dQhb0S7lC8dDMPbW2n0x6l2B9nMJW7t5XZs8pTbB-W653gyM3LqXLMW8rldLn56dSdQf3j31KW02?t=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.droneviewtech.com%2F&si=5708253696884736&pi=96a44c40-8530-4143-a3bd-51026c42944b) is a leading aerial mapping and geospatial services company. It works with enterprise customers throughout the United States – collecting, processing and extracting real value out of aerial data. This company focuses on commercial applications and photogrammetry where the benefits of using drones and piloted aircraft to collect and process aerial image/video data yields discernible value, namely in the areas of inspection and asset monitoring (cell tower, wind turbine); aerial mapping, topography and 3D modeling; and stockpile volumetric measurement.
SilverHawk Aerial Imaging
Based in South Ogden, Utah, SilverHawk Aerial Imaging (http://www.silverhawkai.com/) is a drone company offering visual data, asset monitoring, infrastructure inspecting, 3D modeling, and multispectral data. This company was founded in 2014, and they provide precision consulting services to ensure the success of your business.
Follow SilverHawk Aerial Imaging: Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/silverhawkAI)
The drone mega-trend is here to stay and evolve, and almost every industry and field will be impacted by the presence and usage of drones in one way or the other in the coming future. Look for a lot more new innovations and designs in the near future, especially now that the FFA has given drone technology a thumbs up.
Thank you for checking out our list of top 80 drone companies and manufacturers to watch in 2018, and we hope that you have found some interesting businesses to follow, and have learned a little more about ones you already knew.