Much like selfies, drones have a love/hate status with the public. On one hand, they are fun and useful tool for hobbyists and scientists but their popularity has been hampered by privacy and security concerns.
Several large scale public events such as the Super Bowl have announced they are “No Drone Zones” and the reasons are certainly understandable. The highly affordable nature of drones and their ability to carry a payload (either a camera or something more nefarious) can be a major security concern for officials.
While authorities and companies grapple with the complexities of bringing drone services to the market and how to legislate them, it leaves us some time to contemplate the exciting ways that drones could be used in the future.
Just this week a Canadian broke the Guinness World Record for the longest hover-board flight standing on a large drone.
While this is still some way away from being a viable transport alternative, the proof of concept shows that humans, as much as anything else, can be viable cargo for drones.
As we continue to look for viable and more environmentally friendly personalized transport, drones could well hint at a solution.
One of the most inspiring use for drones that I’ve seen in recent months is the Air Shepherd project in Africa where rangers are using drones to help combat poaching of big game animals such as rhinos and elephants.
Faced with a limited budget and vast swathes of land to protect, drones have become a vital tool to help conservationists patrol boundaries, track animals and crack down on illegal hunting and poaching even at night.
Companies like Amazon have brought drone delivery into the public conscience and it’s easy to see why they are keen to get the service off the ground. Using drones to deliver goods and services to clients brings a whole raft of new opportunities for businesses and a new world of convenience for purchasers.
The idea that within moments of placing an order online, whether for a tin of paint or for a pizza, a drone will be sent directly to your exact location carrying your order is nothing short of incredible.
The days of having to stay home to take a delivery look numbered and very soon anything we could need will be just a click away from flying directly to us.