The Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) in the US has allowed ten new commercial drone projects to go ahead in US airspace.
Companies who have been given permission to proceed with drone projects include Apple, Microsoft, Uber, Intel, CNN and FedEx.
The use of drones in US airspace is currently heavily restricted, though more than one million drones and roughly 90,000 pilots are registered with the FAA.
FedEx will be working with Memphis County Airport Authority to trial drones for security purposes. Apple will be using drones to capture images in North Carolina, while CNN will be collaborating with the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma to test drone flight beyond a pilot’s line of sight.
Lesser known companies given the go-ahead include Flytrex, which will be testing food delivery services in North Carolina.
The ten winning projects were picked from a total of 149 proposals. Amazon’s request to use drones to deliver goods to customers in New York was turned down, as were multiple applications made by DJI, the world’s largest non-military drone manufacturer.
The trials will run for approximately two and a half years, and will be used to establish new regulations for drone flight.
“Data gathered from these pilot projects will form the basis of a new regulatory framework to safely integrate drones into our national airspace,” said Elaine Chao, US secretary of transportation.
(Source: BBC News)