Press release

Most U.S. Consumers Support Professional Drone Use, Says CTA

Sponsored by Businesswire

Most Americans are comfortable with the many ways drones are changing
our lives for the better, according to new research from the Consumer
Technology Association (CTA). The study, Drones:
Public Perceptions & Consumer Attitudes
, reports
three-quarters of U.S. adults are comfortable with drone use by local
law enforcement (76%), utility and construction companies (71%) and
educational institutions (70%).

“Drones are making work safer and more efficient for professions such as
newsgathering, construction, utility inspections and first responders,”
said Steven Hummel, senior research analyst, market research, CTA. “At
the same time, innovations in technology have made drones more
accessible for consumers with enhanced features that can turn anyone
into a hobbyist or indoor racing enthusiast. The possibilities of drones
are limitless.”

Consumer sentiment about drones is even higher among hobbyists – 86% of
drone owners support any adult flying a drone for general purposes.
CTA’s latest Consumer
Technology Ownership and Market Potential Study
shows 13% of
U.S. households – some 15.6 million U.S. households – own a drone, up
from 10% in 2018. The study also forecasts 12% of households plan to buy
a drone in the next year.

Almost all (99%) drone owners use their devices for recreational uses
including general purpose flying (72%), amateur aerial photography and
videography (55%), and racing (23%). Small- (59%) and medium-sized (58%)
drones are most common, and most owners have more than one device.

Other findings include:

  • Most drone owners are married (56%) with children (60%) and own their
    home (68%). Current drone owners also tend to live in the South (41%)
    – especially in suburban areas (45%) – and identify as male (62%).
  • While only one-third (35%) of U.S. adults are familiar with the Know
    Before You Fly
    drone safety education campaign, it has strong
    brand recognition with current drone owners (63%).
  • Keeping out of the way of emergency vehicles and operations (89%) and
    remaining a safe distance from people, other aircrafts and vulnerable
    property (88%) are most important to consumers, regardless of whether
    they own a drone.

It’s important to note that these “toy” drones – which weigh less than
half a pound – and drones used for racing or indoor use do not require
Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) registration and thus are not
accounted for in FAA forecasts.

CTA’s consumer study surveyed of over 2,000 U.S. adults. To read the
full report, visit

About Consumer Technology Association:

Consumer Technology Association (CTA)TM is the trade
association representing the $398 billion U.S. consumer technology
industry, which supports more than 18 million U.S. jobs. More than 2,200
companies – 80 percent are small businesses and startups; others are
among the world’s best-known brands – enjoy the benefits of CTA
membership including policy advocacy, market research, technical
education, industry promotion, standards development and the fostering
of business and strategic relationships. CTA also owns and produces CES®
– the world’s gathering place for all who thrive on the business of
consumer technologies. Profits from CES are reinvested into CTA’s
industry services.


  • CES

    January 7-10, 2020 – Las Vegas, NV