Some Bay State companies are already putting drones in the air to enhance their bottom line as the Federal Aviation Administration hints it may be open to some industrial uses of the hovering craft.
“It’s a novelty now, but I think it will become more of a pillar,” said Missy Cummings, a drone professional at MIT. “These drones can truly improve business procedures.”
Lexington realtor Jonathan de Araujo has been using consumer drones to take aerial photos and video of his properties for months after realizing that the birds-eye view has become increasingly popular with his clients.
“The end result is simply unequaled,” he said. “Everything we can do to give a more positive impression indicates more people at the open home. The concept is to simply provide a better, more positive, a more extensive impression of what you’re looking at.”
De Araujo uses his drone, a model equipped with a cam and offered to any customer, to provide his houses more context, consisting of providing a total view of a yard, or revealing how close the park down the street is.
“When you’re taking stills from ground level, you’re seeing one angle, one shot,” he said. “It just made sense to add that additional measurement.”
Recently, the FAA said that they’re thinking about letting a wide range of television and film studios use the drones for filming. At the moment, the only business drone air travels allowed by the FAA are those by one company off the Alaskan coast. The FAA has been working for the previous years on possible security regulations that would enable widespread commercial drone use, but those policies have actually been repeatedly postponed. Most recently, the FAA has said it will launch suggested regulations for running small drones by November. That would be followed by a potentially years-long process to complete the policies.
Dan Kara, a robotics and drone industry expert with Myria Research, said the FAA is under pressure to clarify the guidelines due to the fact that numerous, from individual realty representatives to Amazon.com, are making use of or expressing interest in making drones part of their toolkit.
“It’s taking place organically,” Kara said.
Marcella Hoekstra, who runs a wedding video business called Heirloom Pictures, intends to purchase a drone quickly before the market becomes too saturated.
“I’ve seen exactly what these drones can do, and I’ve seen some truly stunning, sweeping shots of landscapes and architecture,” Hoekstra said. “It’s a fantastic method to explore … and provide the bride and groom a bird’s-eye view.”
Kara stated some are looking to drones for the novelty. For example, a club in Las Vegas is delivering luxury champagne to its high-rollers by drone.
But others are promoting for the allowed usage of drones for search and rescue missions, to obtain a great view of wildfires and to assist farmers to track their crops.
“There’s no concern drones can transform (agriculture),” Cummings stated.