MapmyIndia join hands with DFI, launches Drone Innovation Challenge


In an effort to bolster the drone industry and bring in innovation, MapmyIndia launched the Drone Innovation Challenge 1.0 in partnership with the Drone Federation of India (DFI). The DFI is a premier industry body that promotes drone technology and works towards building a safer and scalable drone industry.

For the Drone Innovation Challenge, companies can enrol them and those who qualify will be provided free access to MapmyIndia solutions of up to Rs 4 lakh, usage credits and technical support. Further, winners will be showcased widely and will be given joint go-to-market support worth Rs 1 crore or more, business opportunities and funding support opportunities.

In addition, MapmyIndia also announced its solutions for drone manufacturing, drone service providers, drone solution developers, drone users, and enterprise customers. These solutions include products, platforms, and APIs for advanced and interactive 2D, 3D, 4D and HD digital mapping, GIS, geospatial analytics and AI, as well as real-time drone identification and tracking IoT and flight operations automation.

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The CEO and Executive Director of MapmyIndia Rohan Verma, while addressing the occasion, said, “The Government of India introduced pathbreaking regulatory reforms in the geospatial industry in February 2021, which liberalised, unshackled, and unleashed the potential of the indigenous geospatial industry, for which we at MapmyIndia are extremely grateful. Similarly, they have started consultations for the draft Drone Rules 2021 which are aimed at liberalising the drone sector, which is a very welcome and progressive step.”

MapmyIndia completely aligns with the Prime Minister’s vision of an Aatmanirbhar Bharat. From the very beginning in 1995, MapmyIndia has been aiming to accelerate the advent of a Sarvottam Bharat and bring in the benefits of best-in-class, indigenously, and in-house developed, digital maps and location technologies to all Indians. This will also enable India to head towards being a global powerhouse in these strategically important sectors and advanced technologies, he added.

Rohan said, by 2026, India’s drone market will grow to be a USD 1.8 Billion market. With this, MapmyIndia is focused on enabling the most cutting-edge drone solutions to cater to the Indian industry, economy, and society as drones play a crucial role in ensuring the safety of the country and its citizens, security, and privacy.

“We are excited about the MapmyIndia-DFI partnership and are inviting drone manufacturers, service providers and solutions developers to participate in the Drone Innovation Challenge 1.0. In the past few years, we have funded and partnered with various drone startups and ecosystem players. We will help the winners of the Drone Innovation Challenge 1.0 and further scale up the indigenous ecosystem with joint go-to-market business and funding opportunities,” he said.

Director of Drone Federation of India Smit Shah said, “India is projected to become one of the largest markets for drones. While we focus on manufacturing drones in India, it is also crucial that we leverage India’s existing software development expertise to develop an indigenous suite of software solutions to create significant value addition for the drone ecosystem. We aim to find, support and promote such indigenous solutions as a part of this challenge. The MapmyIndia-DFI Drone Innovation Challenge 1.0, a unique competition has been specially designed to encourage innovation at the grassroot levels, with an appeal for innovation-driven tech companies. This challenge, the first in a series of initiatives that have been jointly planned will help create new technologies and solutions that will not only enhance the utility of drones across sectors but also make them accessible to millions of Indians.”

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Drone Innovation Challenge

As per the Drone Innovation Challenge eligibility, drone manufacturing companies, companies providing drone-based services, software solutions providers for the drone industry, can apply for the Challenge. Through this challenge, such companies are encouraged to leverage MapmyIndia’s products, platforms, APIs, and solutions to innovate and build drones; drone components; sensors for surveying, mapping, surveillance, inspection, delivery and transportation; etc. Also, these are encouraged to develop drone technology-based products for government, agriculture, mining, smart city, law enforcement, security, and defence verticals.

The challenge looks forward to seeing several innovative drone tech for consumer, recreational and travel, and tourism applications including geo-tagged photography and videography, and more. Also, innovation in map-based drone software solutions like interactive ground control systems, drone fleet management solutions, industry-specific drone data processing and visualisation platforms, unmanned drone traffic management solutions, drone delivery systems, drone surveillance, and inspection solutions, and finally drone monitoring, tracking and security systems, and solutions that help identify and counter rogue drones.