How the Future of Drone Technology is Already Here


(StatePoint) Since their first use in the mid-1800s in the form
of hot air balloons, unmanned aerial vehicles have been used for
security, photography, safety, and many other applications.
Today, drones have a significant impact on the way we do
business — from warfare reconnaissance and real estate
marketing, filmmaking and inventory tracking.

For example, General Motors uses drones to inspect its
facilities as a way to safely monitor inventory on its production
lots in two to three hours versus what might otherwise take eight
to 12 hours with an on-ground, manual inspection. These
inspections can also be performed without a complete shutdown
of the facilities and without the risk of hoisting personnel in the
air or onto the rails.

Additionally, on the military battlefield, drones are playing
increasingly pivotal roles in providing crucial real-time
intelligence and reconnaissance data that allow for tactical
advantages. Pre-mission mapping, target surveillance, and battle
damage assessment are just some of the benefits provided by
drones on the battlefield without additional risk to human

More industries are catching on to the technology’s potential
to speed up protocol, offer safer working conditions, and provide
fewer disruptions. To meet this rising demand, there are 865,505
drones registered in the United States and counting and 280,418
certified remote pilots, according to the Federal Aviation

“Given the many critical uses of drone technology, we are
working to ensure that drones offer speedier, more versatile,
uninterrupted footage that can be acquired using safer,
remotely operated technology,” says Jeff Thompson, CEO of
Red Cat Holdings, a leading provider of drone-based products,
services and solutions.

Thompson identifies one of the latest innovations in drone
technology as the ability to pilot a drone from virtually anywhere
in the world using only an internet connection via a mobile
phone in the vicinity of the drone. There are significant
efficiencies, ranging from reduced personnel and drastically
reduced inspection time, that arise from the ability to inspect
infrastructure, equipment, structures, land areas, and job sites
using only a drone and a pilot that are hundreds or even
thousands of miles apart.

Another innovation? The possibility of operating four drones
on a single controller to provide actionable footage immediately.
Red Cat Holdings’ four-drone “swarm” marks the first instance
of a fully operational multi-drone system coming to market. Red
Cat’s 4-Ship product allows control of up to four of Red Cat
subsidiary Teal’s Golden Eagle units, and an additional linked
controller facilitates the handoff of control from one pilot to
another. This new product offering potentially provides
continuous 360-degree surveillance of a target facilitated by a
single pilot in control of up to four drones. To learn more or
preorder, visit

From municipal traffic monitoring to personal recreational use,
drones are changing and improving lives. And, thanks to
advancements in their design, they are becoming better, faster
and more useful tools across a growing number of applications
and industries.