The State of the Drone Market, 2020

Scale and Growth

In August 2019, Bloomberg ran an article with the headline, “Drone Bubble Bursts, Wiping Out Companies and Hammering VCs.” Less than three months later, CNBC ran a video story with the headline, “Drones are growing into a $100 billion industry.”It begs the question: how could startups be failing in such a thriving industry?The answer is complicated, but the Bloomberg piece turns to Kay Wackwitz, founder and chief executive officer of the research group Drone Industry Insights, to explain why 25 drone startups closed their doors in the past decade.“There was some irrationality around drones, a period of hype, driven by the popularity of the hobby sector,” he says. “We’re getting past that and people are coming back to reality.”The Bloomberg article also notes that the industry in the U.S. has quickly shifted away from an emphasis on hardware to a focus on software data, intelligence, and analysis. The CNBC piece reports that the consumer sector will make up just 17% of the drone market in 2020.Clearly, the true potential for drones lies beyond hardware, hype, and the consumer sector. Businesses, more than ever, are finding value in drone software and data: in a recent DroneDeploy customer survey, nearly two-thirds of respondents said that they use drones to improve operations and increase productivity.The winners in tomorrow’s drone industry will be the drone companies that deliver true business value and ROI to a range of customers. This eBook takes a look at how we can expect drone software and data to grow in 2020 and beyond.

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