The LAANC program allows drone operators to use an interface from one of four providers that were hand-picked by the FAA — AirMap, Project Wing (an entity of X, formerly known as Google), Rockwell Collins and Skyward — to request approval to fly in restricted airspace. Operators would then receive approval almost instantly.
SF Express, a courier in China, announced that one of its subsidiaries received the first official permit to deliver packages via drones.
The courier is focused on delivering items via drones to more sparsely populated areas. The company said it intends to use a few types of drones. Traditional manned aircraft will delivery items at large scale to major warehouses, followed by big drones delivering items to local warehouses and small drones making the actual deliveries to customers. Continue reading China’s second-largest courier just got permission for drone delivery→
An Australian startup took to Reddit to unconventionally announce a partnership with DJI dealers — a blockchain-based drone rental service.
Sound like the most 2018 sentence ever? You’re not wrong.
The startup markets provide asset-tracking and payments services to “sharing economy” providers worldwide — including drones. Sharering calls itself as the “Amazon of the sharing economy,” using a distributed recording system based on blockchain technology, and claims that it can’t be broken or hacked.
Sharering announced this week that it would be partnering with DJI distributors in Australia to provide an online service for them to rent their drones to governments, corporations, and for events.
When it was released in 2013, the original DJI Phantom was a remarkable drone, except for one big problem: you couldn’t see what the drone’s camera was seeing in real-time, meaning you were flying blind until you landed, unmounted the GoPro and uploaded its SD card to your computer. It was an awkward and clunky process that made for lots of missed photo opportunities and cumbersome fiddling of gear.
When the DJI Phantom 2 Vision+ came out, aerial photography changed. When the camera is seamlessly integrated into the drone so it can be controlled and viewed in real time, photos not only get better, but new applications come about: spotting poachers over wildlife reserves, rescuing lost hikers or detecting where flames are in a burning building.
DJI just got a huge custom order — 1,000 drones to be exact — and they’re headed to the construction industry.
The drones were ordered by Komatsu Smart Construction, a division of Komatsu, which is a Japanese corporation that manufactures construction, mining, and military equipment, as well as industrial equipment like press machines, lasers and thermoelectric generators.
The custom ordered is being fulfilled in partnership with Skycatch, a San Francisco-based commercial drone data company that uses drone data to create 3D maps. The 1,000 drones are manufactured by DJI and outfitted with specialized Skycatch technology, where they will fly autonomously over Komatsu construction sites to come up with maps and models.
Drones are coming to disrupt yet another industry: pro football.
The Salina Liberty pro indoor football team based in Salina, Kansas is now playing with drones flying overhead. The drones are performing a variety of tasks, ranging from making the 35-foot ball drop to the head referee before opening kickoff, as well as capturing aerial footage of the games to livestream on the team’s Facebook page.
The drones most recently flew over Saturday’s game against the Bismarck Bucks, at the Tony’s Pizza Events Center. The drones will fly during six home games this season.