As a commercial drone pilot, I’m very familiar with DroneDeploy — it’s a platform that uses an iOS app connected to a remote controller to automate aerial mapping from drones. Last week, DroneDeploy updated its app with a new feature called Live Map, which lets drone operators create real-time maps in the field on the iOS device.
Previously, users would use DroneDeploy to plan a flight to take photos, but then needed to download photos from an SD card to a computer, then upload to the DroneDeploy platform to have a map assembled. With Live Map, a drone pilot plans a flight, takes off, and then watches as maps are rendered on-screen during flight. There’s no need for an internet or cell connection, and the wait for processing is eliminated.
The new Live Map feature enables high quality daily mapping. For growers and agronomists, this means that crop health, spot stress and storm damage can be mapped daily for immediate remediation if necessary. Construction professionals can monitor job sites in real time, instantly generating maps for reporting, planning and safety.
Live Maps can also be used for coordinating disaster response, assisting in missing persons searches, or documentation of conservation efforts, and as drone pilots become more familiar with the feature, use cases are sure to expand exponentially.