What do we know about the Yuneec drone company and its products?
Today’s guest will fill us in on details. Frank DeMartin is Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the Americas at Yuneec. The company has a long history in the aviation industry, starting out as a manufacturer of remonte-controlled aircraft and evolving in to one of today’s leading drone makers. In this edition of the Drone Radio Show, Frank talks about the origin and history of Yuneec, its latest products and some case uses, and he offers insights into the commercial and consumer drone industry.
In This Episode
- Introduction. Frank DeMartin is Senior Vice-President of sales and marketing for Yuneec Americas. He manages the business in North America and Latin America.
- Origins of the Company. Yuneec has been around for almost 20 years. The company was founded in 1999 as a manufacturer of radio controlled model aircraft. It grew to become a leader in electric aviation for both unmanned and manned systems. In 2010, Yuneec’s E430 electric aircraft, won the Lindbergh Electric Airplane Prize at the World Electric Aircraft symposium. About the same time, Yuneec’s unmanned business began to develop, and the company produced their first consumer UAVs in 2015. Initially, the company focused on the consumer market, but in year or so, there has been a greater focus on the commercial/industrial side of the business.
- The H520 UAV. Frank introduces us to Yuneec’s newest drone, the H520, a hex copter similar to the consumer Typhoon H drone, but built for the commercial user. It takes the Typhoon H to another level. The H520 is larger, extremely stable, quiet, has a new flight controller and is designed to carry payloads to be effective in the commercial space. The early adopters of the h520 seem to be in the law enforcement, public safety and emergency services area.
- Success Factors. Frank feels there are a few things that give Yuneec a competitive advantage. The first is that the company has demonstrated experience in producing a reliable product. Its experience in the consumer market helps on the commercial side as it is able to draw technology and lessons learned from its consumer products. The six rotor design is incredibly safe and stable, and the H520 platform offers multiple payloads that can be swapped out quickly. Also, while it is possible to upload files to the cloud or to a laptop, the H520 can operate completely as a closed system, so that users retain total control of the data that they capture.
- Use Cases. Frank discusses three recent use cases for the H520, include how the Cecil County Sheriff Office used the UAV to monitor a construction site for suspected theft. The data obtained by the UAV was used to secure a warrant for an arrest in the case. In Las Vegas, the Metro Police used the H520 to fly over crime scenes to collect “unspoiled” forensic evidence before the scene was investigated. And a fire department in Green County, Missouri used the H520 to locate a person at night who had driven off a bridge into a flooded area. Operators used the thermal imaging sensors to locate the person in the dark standing on the hood of their car.
- Market Observations. Frank offers his perspective and insights into the current drone industry. For the commercial drone markets, he sees a period of continued adoption of drone technology. Many organizations have been investigating how drones could provide value and they’re now actually integrating drones into their work flow. He feels public safety will lead this growth, mostly because the use cases seem to more straight-forward. On the consumer side, Franks sees a leveling off in growth, mostly because it grew so fast in the beginning that a leveling off was expected. But he also observes that many initial consumer purchases were made by people who actually used the drones for commercial applications. So these customers are naturally transitioning to higher grade commercial drones.
- Closing. Frank closes by saying that Yuneec has been in the electric aviation and unmanned aircraft business for almost 20 years. It has the experience and the expertise to deliver a dependable product. The company has demonstrated that in the consumer space and now the company is earning it again in the commercial space. Yuneec is entrenched in local markets, doing their best to understand users’ needs and delivering a product that meets those needs.
- Yuneec (www.yuneec.com)