This January, we published our State of the Drone Industry Report, which included vital insights from more than 600 users across 20+ industries spanning over 40 countries. In the next quarter, we revisited usage rates providing insight on enterprise drone activity across several sectors we serve, including agriculture, construction, and energy.
These analyses aim to determine how vital drone technology is – and has become – to various operations and how industries will evolve in the coming years. So, back by popular demand, we’re taking a look at usage and insights from Q2 of 2021.
Let's break down our key findings.
Continued Yearly Growth
Commercial drone usage accelerated during the pandemic and, even as many global restrictions start to relax over one year later, there appear no signs of a slow-down. Q2 2021 flights and users nearly doubled (+99.7% for flights, +82% for users) from the same quarter last year, suggesting drone adoption is here to stay beyond crisis operations. As summer months reach their peaks in the northern hemisphere and the world continues to recover from COVID-19, we’re confident usage rates and users will continue to rise as more companies and businesses experience the tangible benefits of drone data.
With planting season beginning in the northern hemisphere and growing season in full swing in the southern hemisphere, agriculture was, far and away, the most active industry in Q2. Globally, agriculture usage saw 84% more flights and 49% more users in Q2 as compared to Q1 2021. We also saw a 27% YOY increase in flights and a 17% YOY increase in users from the same quarter last year.
Interestingly, the quarterly surge in Q2 vs. Q1 2021 was also almost double the increase in Q2 vs. Q1 2020 (+84% vs. +48%). This may have been due to the introduction of our Stand Assessment tool, which helps farmers analyze early crop emergence and make decisions about re-planting. Co-developed with agri-science giant Corteva, the feature has already proven to reduce traditional stand count times by up to 90%.
Energy & Construction Growth
As predicted in our previous report, the energy industry continued to be one of the fastest growing industries in drone usage – the space saw a quarterly 31% increase in flights and 15% increase in users (27% YOY growth in flights, 11% YOY growth in users).
The construction industry also saw moderate quarterly growth with a 16% increase in flights and a 5% increase in users (10% YOY growth in flights, 5% YOY growth in users). This reflects the general rise in construction following the pandemic, especially with the cost of raw materials stabilizing.
This data supports the claim that energy, construction, and agriculture industries are better understanding the benefits of a drone solution and are flying more frequently as a result.
We can’t wait to see what the Q3 usage data holds. Until then, DroneDeploy will continue to act as the best-in-class software that provides a comprehensive, unbiased view of any asset, any workflow, and any operation – anywhere in the world.