The unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are aircraft systems that can be controlled using a remote or an on-board computer system. UAVs are a part of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) that consist of an UAV, a controller on ground, and a communication system between UAV and controller.
Over the years, the spectrum of UAV applications is increasing, especially for the small UAVs, which are now widely adopted across the hobbyist end users. These applications include inspection and monitoring, remote sensing, product delivery, search and rescue, surveying and mapping, border management, and photography and film production. The prime factor behind the rise in the demand for UAVs for commercial and hobbyist applications is their declining price, compact size, and improved performance.
According to the market intelligence published by BIS Research, the global unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) market was estimated at $22.91 billion in 2019 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 13.27% during the forecast period 2020-2025.
The market growth is driven by the factors such as increasing demand for precision farming and hyper-spectral imagery, growing UAV penetration in civil and commercial applications, increasing need for UAVs for military purposes, along with the increasing demand for actionable intelligence. In addition, there are several opportunities that can potentially boost the growth of the market, including new emerging applications and increasing defense spending by developing economies.
In November 2020, one of the Turkish defense companies, MILSOFT, developed an AI-based swarm software. This software can be used on both fixed wing and rotary wing UAVs, highlighting that both the hardware and software market, i.e., the component segment of the UAV market, is growing. However, the hardware sub-segment of the component segment is expected to dominate the market in 2025.
Further, the North America region owned the maximum share of the market, owing to the presence of many drone manufacturing companies in the North America region. Additionally, countries such as China, Japan, South Korea, Australia, and Singapore are adopting UAVs rapidly. Therefore, APAC currently holds the second-largest market share.
Considering the increasing demand for drones for commercial applications and looking at the growth potential, the established markets are actively implementing several laws and regulations for governing the UAV industry.