The Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) market will surpass US$8.4 billion by 2018 according to new research published by ABI Research entitled Small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) Solutions Ecosystem. By 2019 the Commercial sector will dominate the overall sUAS market with revenues exceeding US$5.1 billion (51% 2014 to 2019 CAGR), roughly 5x larger than the Prosumer/Hobby market, and 2.3x greater than the Military/Civil market segment. Moreover, it is application services—industry specific applications, as well as data, operator and modeling services—and not platforms and other hardware technologies, which will be the key driver for the growth of the Commercial sector.
Ongoing research advancements, technological developments, and rapidly dropping prices for increasingly capable enabling technologies, have combined to remove barriers to innovation and commercialization, and spur the development of new sUAS and increase the ways they can be applied. For this study, the sUAS market was not defined by, or limited to, the unmanned aerial system platforms and airframes alone, but also includes other technologies, products and services that are ancillary to, and often necessary for, the use of small unmanned vehicles, along with the many applications enabled by them.