While drones are responsible for one of the latest tech crazes to hit the mainstream, it’s safe to say that you should not expect them to invade your airspace anytime soon. However, the influx of these flying smart machines may not be as far off as you might think. With heavy-hitters like Amazon, Google and Walmart recognizing the immense opportunity of using drones for shipping and logistics purposes, its no wonder that people are saying “the drones are coming!”

Industrial Applications for Drones

What could prove to be more promising than the consumer-driven demand for flying drones is the use of that technology in industrial settings and applications. Already, we see companies using drones for the following scenarios:

Emergency Response
Enables immediate action, providing emergency response teams with fast, flexible visibility to assess critical situations.
Utilities
Safely allows for the quick inspection of high voltage power lines and wind turbines, helping mitigate worker risk and improve monitoring.
Military & Defense
Assisting with intelligent surveillance and reconnaissance missions to deliver timely, relevant, and assured information to thwart potential threats.
Oil & Gas
Protects and helps maintain extensive miles of pipeline covering large, remote areas that would otherwise require enormous amounts of time and resources.
Agriculture
Creates more efficient farms by monitoring inventory, growth, water and fertilizer levels, and crop health to facilitate production and increase yields.
Public Safety
Supporting firefighting operations by providing more up-to-date information at a lower cost, while reducing the number of responders in harm’s way.

So what does the future hold for these next-generation technologies? It’s hard to say really. One of the biggest hurdles still to jump is figuring out how these aircrafts will fit into the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) existing airspace regulations. There is no doubt there will be new policies that are drone-specific on the horizon. In fact, the FAA has already taken steps in that direction by requiring drone owners to register their aircrafts as a first step in ensuring the safety of everyone who uses the skies.

Let’s just assume that over then next five years policy and technology come together and we finally have lift-off in the drone world. What’s next?

Check out this video courtesy of Be Amazed that explores 10 amazing futuristic uses of drones:

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