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TBT: Evolution of Drones at CES

Morgan Hatfield, Social Media Intern, Consumer Technology Association

The consumer tech revenue is predicted to reach a record total of $377 billion in 2018 according to the CTA mid-year update of the U.S. Consumer Technology Sales and Forecasts. Contributing to the industry is emerging tech such as drone technology.  Total drone sales are expected to have a four percent increase in 2018 to reach $1 billion in revenue.

We’re throwing it back to the start of drone exhibits at CES to see how this tech industry has evolved into the industry it is today:


Parrot showcased their mini drone that is app controlled on any smart device with wheels for floor and wall climbing.


At CES 2015, more user-friendly drones for sports and video capture were displayed. Hexo Plus showed off their app-controlled drone, Trace showcased their drone that follows a set individual using smart tracking technology and the Airdog drone made for autonomous video recording for action sports was exhibited.


At CES 2016, over 27 exhibitors premiered their latest drone innovations. Sony showcased their Alpha 6000 drone that carries a digital Sony camera underneath its wings and Advanced Aerodynamics exhibited their XT Flyer drone with a self-correcting/crash protected frame.



At CES 2017, the use cases of drones expanded to more aerial sports video coverage as well as search-and-rescue operations.


At CES 2018, 47 drone exhibitors spread across over 38,550 square feet on the show floor. Drones used for anything from delivering medical supplies and improving crop production, to even helping out with rescue missions, were on display and showed how the drone market is continuing to expand.

See the latest in drone tech at CES 2019 in Las Vegas, January 8-11.