& cplSiteName &

Drones Drive New Revenue Streams for Mobile Ecosystem

Brian Wynne

Drones, or unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), are big business. According to an AUVSI report on the industry's economic impact, in the first three years of UAS integration, more than 70,000 jobs will be created in the US with an economic impact of more than US$13.6 billion. This benefit will grow during the next ten years, when we have forecast more than 100,000 jobs created and economic impact of $82 billion.

As part of this impact, the use of unmanned systems is driving new opportunities in a range of industries, including mobile.

The use of drone technology is already changing the game for wireless, as new regulations have enabled the commercial use of UAS. From the infrastructure perspective, carriers such as AT&T are already using drones for tower inspections, siting and mapping. This will result in easier, faster, better network buildouts.

But unmanned systems are not just useful for carrier infrastructure. In fact, they represent a valuable new revenue stream. Last October, Verizon announced that it would begin selling data plans for drones, allowing them to stream video, pictures and data from sensors back to the user. The technology has broad application across a variety of industries, including agriculture, transportation, oil and gas, and many others. Offering data plans for drones opens up a new enterprise data revenue stream for carriers. In fact, Verizon is betting big on drones, having invested both in PrecisionHawk, which analyzes information gathered by drones, and Skyward, a drone operations software company, which Verizon recently purchased. (See Verizon Adds Drone Management Platform and Verizon Buys Skyward.)

The market for unmanned systems is just beginning to be tapped. In fact, precision agriculture and public safety -- the two verticals that are driving 90% of the growth in the sector -- are critical to the public good and therefore of very high interest to investors and consumers. For carriers, these represent important markets with high revenue potential.

Precision agriculture taps into the global interest in sustainable farming practices that will feed an exploding population. Sensors that send information back on plant health, hydration and growth rate will leverage mobile broadband technology to ensure farmers apply the right inputs to each individual plant. Always-on connectivity is extremely valuable to the agronomists using the technology, and they will be willing to pay for it.

Similarly, public safety requires mobile broadband connections, and is of key importance to federal and local governments. The First Responder Network Authority is building a national high-speed wireless broadband network dedicated to public safety. Carriers are partnering with FirstNet and local public safety departments to expand the US's capabilities in this area.

2017 promises to be a year of opportunity for the unmanned systems sector, and for the mobile industry to capitalize on this growth. We expect to see more carriers join Verizon in investing in the space, and a host of mobile apps and services companies spring up to drive the industry forward.

— Brian Wynne, President and CEO, AUVSI

AUVSI's upcoming conference -- XPONENTIAL 2017 -- takes place in Dallas May 8-11 and features an educational track dedicated to exploring the opportunities for UAS in wireless. Among the program's participants are thought leaders from government agencies, such as DOD, FAA, NASA and NOAA, and commercial organizations, including AT&T, Cisco, General Electric, Spirent Communications, Qualcomm, Intel and Facebook.

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
User Rank: Light Beer
5/23/2018 | 11:58:27 AM
Learn the basics of muscle building
Nutrition, training, and lifestyle are the basic of muscle building process. These approved supplements could help you lose fat and build lean muscle mass, one of them is a supplement by crazy bulk. Learn more about these bodybuilidng supplements on crazy bulk labs.
User Rank: Light Beer
3/29/2017 | 2:15:06 PM
Get free roblox
I have got the best site free robux for roblox cheats .this game multiplayer game.its really very helpful for me this website..
More Blogs from Column
There is nothing wrong with large amounts of debt if you methodically expand a business, but what are these guys doing?
Market forces are working well in the business data services (BDS) market in the US, argues Bruce Mehlman, co-chairman of the Internet Innovation Alliance.
Mobile operators moving to virtualized networking for 5G infrastructure need to carefully consider the motivations behind the move and make the right choices at every step along the way.
Cheenu Seshadri, the managing partner at Three Horizon Advisors, looks at the market concentration risks of letting T-Mobile and Sprint merge.
Here's how CSPs can inject ubiquitous connectivity to achieve growth in the enterprise space.
Featured Video
From The Founder
John Chambers is still as passionate about business and innovation as he ever was at Cisco, finds Steve Saunders.
Flash Poll
Upcoming Live Events
June 26, 2018, Nice, France
September 12, 2018, Los Angeles, CA
September 24-26, 2018, Westin Westminster, Denver
October 9, 2018, The Westin Times Square, New York
October 23, 2018, Georgia World Congress Centre, Atlanta, GA
November 7-8, 2018, London, United Kingdom
November 8, 2018, The Montcalm by Marble Arch, London
November 15, 2018, The Westin Times Square, New York
December 4-6, 2018, Lisbon, Portugal
All Upcoming Live Events
Hot Topics
The Telco Debt Binge May End Badly
Scott Raynovich, Founder and Principal Analyst, Futuriom, 6/15/2018
Mavenir's Billion-Dollar Blueprint
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-Chief, 6/18/2018
Larry Ellison Laughed at the Cloud, Now the Cloud Is Laughing Back
Mitch Wagner, Executive Editor, Light Reading, 6/20/2018
CableLabs: New Optical Spec Almost Here
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading, 6/18/2018
Animals with Phones
Backing Up Your Work Is Crucial Click Here
Live Digital Audio

A CSP's digital transformation involves so much more than technology. Crucial – and often most challenging – is the cultural transformation that goes along with it. As Sigma's Chief Technology Officer, Catherine Michel has extensive experience with technology as she leads the company's entire product portfolio and strategy. But she's also no stranger to merging technology and culture, having taken a company — Tribold — from inception to acquisition (by Sigma in 2013), and she continues to advise service providers on how to drive their own transformations. This impressive female leader and vocal advocate for other women in the industry will join Women in Comms for a live radio show to discuss all things digital transformation, including the cultural transformation that goes along with it.

Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed