Commercial drones are moving from a novelty item to an indispensable business tool, with PwC pegging the potential opportunity size at $127B in its report, “Clarity from Above”. However, there is a key element that is needed before drones can be successful in enterprise applications: they must be integrated into regular workflow systems, instead of existing in their own silos.

It’s like saying “let’s talk” instead of “let’s talk over a telephone” in the world of voice communication.

An example of this is showcased below. A few months ago, Cisco’s Enterprise Routing and Mobility team partnered with FlytBase and AeroTestra to showcase end-to-end enterprise workflows involving fleets of drones. Cisco’s Spark, WebEx and Drone ASAP products were integrated with Built.io’s Digital Transformation Platform to create this unique solution.

As shown in the diagram above, users can send text messages through Cisco Spark or voice messages through Amazon Alexa or Google Home to initiate and execute various drone commands. These commands are then securely delivered to the drones via Spark Bots over Cisco’s wireless and FlytBase’s cloud infrastructure. The drones perform these operations while offering complete visibility and control over Cisco Spark, Cisco WebEx and FlytBase’s consoles.


More recently, at the Drone World Expo conference in San Jose, I conducted a session on “The Future of Commercial Drone Ecosystem” that outlined the vision and criteria for successfully integrating drones into enterprise workflows.

I can sum up my vision for the successful integration of drone technology in a single quote: “Success is when you can peacefully forget about the technology.” How many years do you think it will take for drones to become an integral part of our lives in a similar way?

Credits: Shivaji Diwane, Jon Schimpke, Sundara Paal Rani Thirumalaiappan, Keith D’souza, Nitin Gupta, Sean Headrick



Biren Gandhi

Head of Drone Business & Distinguished Strategist

Corporate Strategy Office