Since drones began entering the commercial market, pilots and tech-enthusiasts have been applying the tech to solve historic problems. As drone technology develops, businesses across a huge array of sectors have been able to benefit – and it’s not just from getting those classic aerial snapshots.

1. Photographing real estate to show off its amenities

If you’ve ever watched Location, Location, Location, you’ll know that Phil and Kirstie are advocates of “location first, property second.” The house can always be improved, but its location can’t – so choose wisely! With aerial drone photography, you can immediately communicate the value of a property’s location by showing off its surroundings. A semi-detached that’s five minutes from the best local school? A flat within sprinting distance to a commuter station? High-quality images or video gets the message across quickly and with maximum impact.

2. Accessing hard to reach areas of a building

Whether you need to inspect a building for potential repairs in awkward places or you’re looking to accurately survey a commercial property, a drone is a perfect tool for getting the whole picture. Traditionally, these kinds of inspections or surveys require expensive, time-consuming scaffolding set-ups to achieve, and if the building is in a state of serious disrepair this can even put lives at risk. In just a few hours, my clients have an accurate, high-quality visual video assessment of their property that they can also return to whenever they need.

3. Window Cleaning Drones

Image by Aerones

As you can imagine, cleaning skyscrapers and high-rise buildings in big metropolitan areas can be very difficult – not to mention costly and potentially dangerous. US-based engineering company Aerones was well aware of these issues when they designed a large window cleaning drone with a ground-based water and electrical tethering system. They’ve even used the same tech to design a fire-fighting model that tackles high-rise infernos. Unfortunately, the company doesn’t look like it’s developing any more drone-related technology for now.

4. Monitoring project development and keeping sites safe

Building sites are areas of highly coordinated, energetic activity, especially large, commercial developments. It can be hard to keep track of what’s going on and project management can suffer – drone monitoring and live photography is an incredibly valuable tool to help site managers take stock of progress and site layout. Plus, if it’s a high profile commercial investment, aerial photography can help monitor and measure overall progress.

5. Security and surveillance

Photo by Tim Hüfner

While technology will never replace human intuition and in-person decision making, there are lots of ways it can support the process of protecting a building or space. Drones that can operate autonomously to “patrol” an area can be an effective first line of defence against potential intruders. A drone with temperature-sensitive photography could discern whether someone has entered a restricted area under the cover of darkness, and act as a precursor to alerting a guard or security team. Telling the difference between a person and a very large, curious cat might be another matter!

6. Flamethrower Drones for Clearing Powerline Debris

This really has got to be seen to be believed!

This is just a handful of examples of how drones can and do improve our lives and support businesses. Although I’m not planning on investing in a drone with flame-throwing capabilities any time soon, there are still plenty of ways that I use drones that may make your life easier.