Drone Video Systems: A Budding New AV Category

Better understanding of commercial drones’ ROI coupled with looser FAA regulations may prompt an enormous product opportunity for integrators.

According to Business Insider and Munich Reinsurance, commercial drone applications are about to see some considerable growth over the next decade.

In the next five years, it is estimated that drones will be used by 40 percent of all businesses. By 2024, the commercial drone market will grow to represent 12 percent of the $98 billion cumulative global spending on aerial drones. We saw the beginning of this growth at InfoComm 2015 around the excitement in the Drone Pavilion.

As the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) loosens its grip on commercial drone regulations, this multi-billion dollar business becomes a huge opportunity for commercial integrators in markets like education, healthcare, government and public events.

In the midst of these changes, Stampede has been taking steps to bring the knowledge and opportunity of drones to the commercial AV market. In the company’s latest initiative, Stampede has announced the inauguration of a new commercial AV category called Drone Video Systems (DVS).

“The commercial demand for drones by end-users is well-established,” says Kevin Kelly, president and COO of Stampede. “Government agencies, universities and corporations understand the value derived from integrating drones into their business operations. However, what has yet to be established, at least prior to the introduction of Stampede’s DVS solutions, is a single place to turn to learn about, design and build their drone solution.”

Stampede’s product portfolio will include hardware, component add-ons and command and control capabilities. The aim is to help integrators, installers and consultants understand the unique applications for drones in commercial environments—things like search and rescue, construction, mapping and surveying, public safety—and customize their solutions and services accordingly.

“The first responder, who requires a zero millisecond video downlink to view drone-filmed footage in real-time, needs a completely different DVS solution than the broadcaster who requires downloadable data storage for aerial photography,” says Kelly. “The two completely different uses require two completely different DVS solutions.”

Products include drone platform hardware such as frames, batteries, motors, gimbals and sensors, downlinks and controllers. Sensors, video downlink compression, GPS and live video conferencing make up Stampede’s add-on components. As for command and control, Stampede points to offerings such as video data management, data archiving, storage and retrieval, and live video data sharing.

In addition, pro AV dealers will have access to professional services in the form of consultation and drone training.

“We’ve developed our Stampede sales force into a fleet of drone consultants,” says Kelly. “Dealers come to us with their customers’ unique requirements and we recommend either an out-of-box or customized DVS solution. We’re the expert drone consultants so our dealers don’t have to be; they can focus on sales while utilizing our expansive knowledge base.”

To this end, Stampede has partnered with Unmanned Vehicle University to allow dealers to provide their customers with the training required to commercially fly drones.

“Our partnership with UVU is critical in providing our dealers with the complete drone product and service package,” says Kelly. “From the hardware, software, and expert consultation, to education and training, all under one roof, Stampede provides dealers with everything needed to seamlessly integrate drones into their AV product portfolio.”

Another partnership, with UA Solutions, will provide dealers with legal and regulatory counseling that their customers may need to man these intensive vehicles.

“Major changes in FAA regulations are imminent,” says Kelly. “As a result, our proactive partnership with the highly-esteemed UA Solutions ensures that Stampede dealers are prepared to take advantage of the regulatory changes that will allow counseled customers to expedite their drone certification process.”

As the ROI becomes more clearly understood and the regulatory landscape evolves, demand for commercial drones will grow enormously, says Kelly. “The commercial drone market is on the precipice of exponential growth,” Kelly continues. “And through Stampede DVS solutions, we’ve developed a way to prepare dealers to capitalize on this dynamic and explosive new profit opportunity.”

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