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TechCrunch Chats with CEO of 3D Robotics

BY Alan Perlman
15 January 2015

TechCrunch recently sat down with Chris Anderson, CEO of 3D Robotics, the largest drone manufacturer in the United States, to chat about the UAV industry, the success of 3D Robotics and where drones are heading.

There’s no better way to get amped up about the drone industry than to hear Anderson talk drones. He remarks how he’s never seen an industry move from military-industrial to toy as quickly as drones have, really in just the last 3 years.

3d robotics chris anderson

Yet, there’s still more progress to be made. UAV systems can be smaller, can have longer flight times, and can offer easier, more cinematic shots.

Keep an eye out for applications that better “internalize the cinematic values of a director,” Anderson says.

Anderson draws a parallel between his company, 3D Robotics, and Android, explaining how 3D Robotics offers full stack, open source software that many other companies are using. The 3D Robotics ecosystem is vast.

The biggest industry in the UAV world, and what everyone seems to be talking about right now including Anderson, is the commercial space – agriculture, infrastructure, construction, real estate, and more. He predicts a movement toward more niche platforms that offer single-button solutions for specific commercial applications.

I’m happy that Anderson mentioned the Small UAV Coalition, as I recently stumbled upon their website and thought it was a great initiative with the right players involved. The coalition recognizes that the FAA’s existing regulatory path is oriented more toward aerospace companies, and that UAV systems under 4lbs and flying under 400 ft. in altitude should be regulated differently than a 747 airplane.

The Small UAV Coalition encourages the FAA to accelerate the regulatory path, promotes safe UAV piloting, and educates communities and industries about drone usage.

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