In its recent report “Forecast Analysis: IoT Enterprise Drone Shipments, Worldwide”, Gartner Inc. predicted that worldwide shipment of IoT enterprise drones will reach 5,26,000 units in 2020 with a 50 percent increase from 2019. The research firm has forecast it to reach 1.3 million by 2023.
As we can observe the interest in aerial devices is increasing across various industries with a demand for strengthened IoT connectivity. The ongoing IoT revolution has accelerated the transformation experience for drones as a complex IoT device. Notably, drones tend to increase efficiency and productivity while reducing workload and costs which makes them an invaluable addition to various sectors.
Kay Sharpington, principal analyst at Gartner said that “the construction sector is an early adopter of drones, which causes construction monitoring to be the largest use case by shipments worldwide across the forecast. Shipments are estimated to reach 210,000 drones in 2020, and more than double by 2023. Drones are taking over tasks such as site surveying and earthworks management as they are faster and safer to carry out with a drone than on foot.”
It has been estimated that the number of global construction employees per drone will decrease from 2,400 to 640 between 2018 and 2020 in an effort to save more cost-expenditure. Well in the short term, most of the use cases will be based around surveillance and monitoring due to the technical complexity of other applications.
Insights from the Gartner report:
The insurance industry is expected to have the second-largest use case by shipment with 46,000 drone shipments forecast for 2020. Also, the shipments are likely to increase by nearly three times by 2023, to reach 136,000 that year.
According to Ms. Sharpington, “drones are used to carry out inspections on buildings and structures after a claim has been made, to assess the extent and cause of the damage. They can also be used to evaluate the type and condition of the building when providing an insurance quote. Their benefits are valuable.
For example, they reduce the cost of scaffolding, ladders and employee time and provide a comprehensive photographic record of the building condition.”
Gartner predicts that the insurance drones will grow from one per 152,000 people in 2018 to one per 72,000 people worldwide in 2020 in order to survey claim areas at a lower cost.
Across the government institutions globally, police and firefighting agencies are deploying drones in public safety operations, wildfire management, crime scene investigation, and search and rescue operations.
According to Gartner, the number of drones used by police and firefighters will grow from one per 210,000 people to one per 47,000 people between 2018 and 2020.
Ms. Sharpington quotes, “fire service drones use cameras and thermal imaging to identify fire sources, extreme heat areas, trapped people and the positions of firefighters in the field. Consequently, firefighting agencies can deploy resources in the right areas in emergencies and investigate incidents while minimizing risk to lives.”
When it comes to retail deliveries, drones are expected to provide customers with rapid service and allow retailers access to customers in remote areas.
However, retail is considered as the longer-term opportunity for drones due to its regulatory restrictions and logistical challenge such as coordinating flight paths, managing airspace over densely populated areas and managing various payloads.
The research firm has estimated that the drone shipments will total 25,000 in 2020 and will rise to 122,000 units in 2023 and the biggest opportunity for retail will come after 2023.