Harvard i-lab | Venture Incubation Program Summer 2014 Demo Day: YouFly | Summary and Q&A

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September 10, 2014
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Harvard Innovation Labs
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Harvard i-lab | Venture Incubation Program Summer 2014 Demo Day: YouFly

TL;DR

This content discusses the mission to make commercial use of drones a reality and outlines the barriers to adoption and the proposed solutions.

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Key Insights

  • πŸ”‰ Drones have yet to become an industry despite media coverage, highlighting the untapped potential.
  • πŸ‘€ The summer was dedicated to exploring use cases, testing different models, and engaging with users.
  • 🀩 Product interaction, training and support, and repair are the key barriers to drone adoption.
  • πŸ•β€πŸ¦Ί A three-pronged approach, including retail stores, training/support services, and custom manufacturing, is proposed to overcome these barriers.
  • πŸ₯³ Building relationships with third-party suppliers and opening test stores are the initial steps.
  • πŸ‘Ά The focus is on creating a brand new market for commercial drones.
  • πŸ‘¨β€πŸ”¬ Continual research and development of in-house drone models will ensure future market competitiveness.

Transcript

so drones are everywhere or at least that's what the media has been telling us if you look on the news and look all around the newspapers you'll see tons of stories about anytime someone finds new use or whenever something new comes up it's a meat it's a newsworthy event but if you look out in the sky they're not everywhere you see drones have yet ... Read More

Questions & Answers

Q: How are drones currently being used in the non-military world?

Drones have been used for toys, recreational purposes, photography, videography, agriculture, and surveillance. They have shown potential for monitoring crops, capturing aerial footage, and more.

Q: What are the main barriers to the adoption of drones?

The main barriers are product interaction, as consumers are hesitant to invest without experiencing the product firsthand. Training and support are also essential, as learning to fly and troubleshoot drones can be challenging. Lastly, repair infrastructure is crucial for fixing damaged drones.

Q: What is the proposed approach to overcome these barriers?

The approach includes establishing brick-and-mortar retail stores to allow customers to interact with the products. Training, service, support, and repair will be offered through these stores to ensure customers have guidance and assistance. Additionally, custom design and manufacturing of drones will be pursued to create a unique market.

Q: What are the next steps for this commercial drone initiative?

The next steps involve forming relationships with third-party suppliers to sell their products through retail stores. Test stores will be opened in select markets to gauge consumer interest. Research and development of in-house drone models will continue for future market release.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Drones have yet to become a widespread industry despite media coverage of their potential uses.

  • The summer was spent exploring various use cases, flight testing different models, and interacting with users.

  • The barriers to drone adoption are product interaction, training and support, and repair, which can be overcome using a three-pronged approach.

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