More and more companies are integrating uncrewed aerial systems with their existing technology systems. As businesses see the value offered by this technology, they begin to move forward with integration efforts—but the process is far from simple.

In the recent webinar “Ways Drone Programs Can Integrate with Other Robotics to Deliver Value”—now available to on-demand—leaders from DroneDeploy, CloudFactory, and Qualcomm Technologies discussed the challenges posed by integration, as well as the tremendous advantages that can result from merging technology systems. Drawing from their professional experiences, these experts offered guidance for companies looking to add drones to their operations in order to save time, improve safety and accuracy, and increase profits.

To illustrate the increased interest in integration, David Inggs, DroneDeploy’s Head of Ground Robotics, described how his firm has helped companies in fields such as energy, construction, and agriculture combine drones with ground robotics. “DroneDeploy has gone from zero drones in production globally to the largest provider of aerial inspection, with people flying around drones predominantly,” he reported.

Working on these projects has given Inggs a unique perspective on how to craft a successful integration effort. Inggs said that effective integration involves scaling a flight team, pilot training, data collection and processing, and much more. “The challenge for the next wave is not so much even the individual bits of technology but the operationalization of those individual bits,” he asserted.

Operationalizing those “bits” and scaling integrated systems is a challenge, according to all the webinar’s panelists, but there are proven methodologies. Dev Singh, Senior Director of Business Development at Qualcomm, said that a “holistic” approach to system integration can be effective. In approaching projects, Singh said that his team looks at “fundamental building blocks that are built holistically when it comes to integration.” This method, he asserted, “can help scale and possibly make life easier for integrating them together.”

From his perspective as Senior Strategic Account Executive at Spatial, CloudFactory, Neheet Trivedi stated that there is “no one size fits all” approach to integrating drones with existing robotic systems. For operations such as drone delivery, he stated, integration “involves a myriad of other technologies and complexity.” Effectively addressing these challenges, he said, requires increasing business competency around drones, changes in regulations, and much more.

Click here to watch the webinar “Ways Drone Programs Can Integrate with Other Robotics to Deliver Value.”