Drones have tended to be most associated with two areas: hobbyists in their back gardens; and military strikes and reconnaissance. There has also been plenty of discussion around the viability of drones for delivering packages to houses, partly thanks to Amazon Prime Air. However the picture is much more complex than that, with drones set to become more widely used in the commercial sector, partly boosted by new standards and legislation. 

Drones are starting to be adopted within sectors as diverse as real estate, construction, utilities, the emergency services, filming and photography. They offer a wide range of benefits, including helping to cut costs and resolve disputes more quickly. There has even been talk of drones being used to transport passengers via air. There are, however, also pitfalls and risks, such as concerns about privacy and safety.

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In this guide, we’ll give an overview of how drones are being used by businesses, how their use will develop in future, and a look at some of the drone start-ups that are pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. We’ll also provide a peek at the cutting-edge of drone development, for example one start-up that is inspired by animal flight for their drones and another that has pioneered the world’s first urban autonomous drone delivery system.

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