San Francisco – based startup Kittyhawk (kittyhawk.io), announces another piece in their end-to-end drone operations solution. Flight Deck is a new feature that brings in-flight controls and functionality to the Kittyhawk platform, connecting the pre- and post-flight features of Kittyhawk with in-flight capabilities. “Kittyhawk’s Flight Deck removes the need for switching between apps during an operation, while also connecting the pilot and his aircraft to real-time airspace alerts and real-time coordination with headquarters,” says a company statement.
Kittyhawk’s drone operations solution has been in development since 2015. Used by a number of high profile clients in the enterprise market, including Shell, Intel and CNN, the platform offers pre-flight tools – mission planning, airspace intelligence, and team management as well as post-flight fleet management tools, including logging, reporting and cloud storage. With Flight Deck, Kittyhawk connects the two: offering in-flight, real-time airspace intelligence for pilots through an integration with the AirMap platform, logging flights automatically, and giving chief pilots and fleet management real-time visibility into their operations.
Leading industry analyst Colin Snow, CEO and Founder of Skylogic Research, says that Kittyhawk’s latest offering mirrors the industry trend towards end-to-end solutions. “As corporations start to roll out their drone operations, they are increasingly looking to consolidate hardware and software vendors,” says Snow. “Platforms that can provide an entire workflow and integrate into existing operations become more and more valuable for large-scale UAV teams. Kittyhawk’s strong product offering puts it in a great place to leverage this market trend.”
As the only solution offering real-time functionality, Kittyhawk hopes to gain a competitve edge in the market. “With more companies adopting drones into their workflows, there is a high demand for safe, scaleable flight management and operations platforms,” says the company. “More flights means more data for drone operators — but the value of that data diminishes over time.”
“Once a company starts operating at scale,” says Jon Hegranes, CEO and Co-Founder of Kittyhawk, “they realize the importance of real-time data. What happened last month or last week is fine for a report, but real-time telemetry and coordination with current flights is a necessity for any serious commercial operator.”
The newly released Flight Deck functionality is free and unlimited for anyone with a DJI drone, the company says, with more features and hardware partners coming soon.
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
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