Drones: Opportunities in the third dimension of robotics

Drones have become a part of our everyday language and landscape. As manufacturers, vendors, and conglomerates continue investing in the technology, it is geared to revolutionize the global economy.

Facebook’s launch of “Aquila”, the solar-powered drone technology used for providing Internet access to remote areas1 will open up the global economy to billions of individuals. This however is just the tip of the iceberg, as Facebook is not directly dealing with its customers, instead it is partnering with local ISPs to deliver its services. The most prominent drone service in the media would be Amazon’s Prime. Alternatively, Google is developing its own drone delivery system and the two companies have very different ideas as to how the system should be run.

This clearly indicates the dependency of the emerging drone industry on the growing, supporting ecosystem of its core drone technologies (hardware and software) and its complete value chain (from manufacturers and vendors, to resellers and value-added service providers).