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28 Consumer Drone Stats in 2023 (That Might Suprise you)

Updated in 2023 by Paul Posea
How Much Does It Cost to Rent a Drone (5)

As the title suggests below is a detailed list of 28 consumer drone states I think every drone enthusiast should know.

And the best part?

All of these stats are up-to-date in 2022. I’ll also keep updating them regularly.

In this article, I’ve compiled stats on:

  • Drone careers
  • Drone market & industry stats
  • Other stats and fun facts
  • Predictions for 2023 and beyond

So without further ado, let’s get right into it!

Drone Career Stats

Many of us don’t fly drones because we want to get paid, but because it’s fun! But honestly, who else wouldn’t want to earn a living doing what they love?

Below is a list of statistics reflecting the current drone piloting situation as a career path.

  1. The median base salary for a drone pilot is $58,752 per year (indeed)
  2. Most drone service providers make below $50,000 a year. (DroneAnalyst)
  1. A drone pilot gets paid $25.73 per hour on average in the US. With the top 10% making over $100/h and the bottom 10% making as low as $10/h. (indeed)
  2. Oil & Gas is the highest-paying industry for drone pilots followed by mining and surveying. With hourly averages of $195, $183 and $175 respectively. (airstoc)
IndustryAverage hourly pay (USD)
Real estate$158
Emergency response$170
Solar energy$174
Oil & Gas$195

(*) These rates are based on an industry study done by Airstoc

  1. San Mateo, California is the city with the highest hourly rate for drone services, followed by Richmond California and Stamford. (Ziprecruiter
CityAverage hourly wage (USD)
San Mateo, CA$36.02
Richmond, CA$33.68
Stamford, CT$32.79
Bellevue, WA$32.71
Brooklyn, NY$32.30
New Haven, CT$32.01
San Francisco, CA$31.83
Lakes, AK$31.72
Brockton, MA$31.69
Paterson, NJ$31.42
  1. By the year 2025, at least 100,000 jobs will be created for drone pilots. (Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International)

This is currently the state of drone jobs. If you want to read further into this, I’ve already done two in-depth articles about drone piloting as a career and whether it is viable in 2022. You can check them both here, and here.

Drones Market & Industry Stats

As technology progresses in general parts are getting cheaper and so is the cost of drones. New and high-performing low-end drones are getting injected into the market every year making drones more accessible.

Needless to say, the demand for drones is increasing as a result, and more industries are starting to incorporate drones in their workflows. Below is a list of stats that reflects that:

  1. The total number of consumer drone shipments worldwide was around 5 million units in 2020. The number is expected to increase over the next decade, reaching 9.6 million consumer drone unit shipments globally by 2030. (Statista)
  1. The drone market is expected to grow by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 57.5% from 2022 to 2028. (Grandviewresearch)
  2. The advent of the 5G delivery model and integration of cloud computing technology with the drone development process is anticipated to provide lucrative growth opportunities to the commercial drone market in 2022 and beyond. (Grandviewresearch)
  3. The rotary blades drone segment accounts for 80% of consumer drone market share, as they are often easy to control.
  4. The hybrid/fixed-wing drone segment has an expected growth rate of 64% in the next 5 years. (Grandviewresearch)
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  1. DJI is the largest consumer drone manufacturer and owns 54% of the global market share as of 2022, and an astonishing 80% in the U.S market. (DroneAnalyst)
  2. As of 2022 the consumer drone market share of the drone company Autel increased by 7%, so keep a lookout for them in the coming years.
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  1. More than half U.S. companies spent more than 10k USD on drones last year. (DroneAnalyst)
  2. China is by far the biggest manufacturer of consumer drones in the world. (DroneAnalyst)
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  1. Even though DJI also sells enterprise drones, the vast majority of their revenue comes from their consumer drone sales.
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  1. The global drone market is expected to reach a $500 Billion market cap by 2028. (Grandviewresearch)
  2. North-America is the biggest importer of consumer drones and holds a 37% of market volume as of 2022. (Grandviewresearch)
  3. The global revenue of drone revenue last year was 43 billion U.S. dollars.
  4.  The number of drones in the U.S. for recreational flying has almost reached half a million mark.
  5. The commercial drone registrations currently stand at around 372 thousand. (Grandviewresearch)
  6.  Low-end drones constitute 65% of the total consumer drones sales. (Grandviewresearch)

Other Stats and Fun Facts

We’ve covered two dozen stats so far. Although there is far more data pertaining to drone use, most of it is geared towards enterprise and professional drones, which I may cover in another article.

Here is a list of some facts and stats about drones I found in the wild:

  1.  Around 15% of Americans have flown a drone at least once according to US drone statistics. (PhillyByAir)
  2.  8% of Americans own a drone. (PhillyByAir)
  3.  Drone Deploy has over 100 million drone pictures online. (Drone Deploy)
  4.  53% of people think that drones are environmentally more friendly in delivering packages. (USPS)
  5.  In 2015, a small drone broke the White House security. (CBS)
  6.  It’s expected that 1 million consumer drones will be sold in 2022.

The Future of Drones in 2023 and Beyond

Contrary to the current growth rates of the drone industry thrown around on the internet, the drone market will grow bigger and faster than expected.

The ease that drones are introduced to several industries is no secret so I won’t even go into that. You’ve also seen how heavily marketed consumer drones have been in the later years, with new drone youtubers popping up every week.

One other thing that I think will happen in the next few years is the emergence of a new player in the drone industry. DJI right now dominates the market, but I believe it’ll more than likely receive sanctions from the U.S. government because DJI is of chinese origin.

Perhaps this will give rise to other drone companies from Europe and the U.S. We can only wait and see.

Hi, I'm Paul.
A big drone enthusiast, reviewing, comparing and writing about drones since 2015. I'm all about helping people enjoy and even monetize their hobby.

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paul posea
Paul Posea
Hi, I'm a long-time drone reviewer and I hope my articles and comparisons on this site as well as Dronesgator's youtube channel are of as much help as possible.
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