Here at Android Authority we mostly know Sony Mobile for its smartphones and tablets, but soon we may see them venturing into a whole new market. The Japanese manufacturer has announced a partnership with ZMP, in which they will band together to build drones.
We haven’t seen many smartphone makers delve into the drone business; the most notable one is probably OnePlus with its tiny DR-1. Making an autonomous flying machine requires a special set of skills, which is why Sony Mobile is not going into this project alone. The joint company will go by the name of “Aerosense Inc.”, and both players will focus on their specializations.
Sony Mobile will be applying its camera, sensing, telecommunications and robotics technologies. Meanwhile, ZMP aims to bring its automated systems and robotics skills to the the table. Let’s keep in mind Sony is a leader in imaging and mobile technologies. Their smartphones and tablets may not be as successful as the company wishes they were, but the Xperia creator does have a foothold on mobile camera solutions.
Sony is known for mass producing camera sensors baked into leading smartphones in the industry – including the iPhone 6, Samsung Galaxy S6 and, of course, Sony’s own devices. ZMP would be hard-pressed to find a better partner for this type of business.
Don’t expect to rush to your nearest store and find a Sony-made drone, though. Aerosense will be focusing on enterprise solutions. The idea is not really to sell drones, but to leverage this new market’s potential and expand its camera sales and cloud services. These technologies are expected to be applied towards the industry, not consumer electronics; or at least that’s the plan for now.
With each company owning about 50% of Aerosense, maybe Sony will have a say in future decisions and push towards a wider adoption, considering they are a big consumer player. At the very least we hope to see more Sony cameras in other drones. This could be a way for Sony to prove other drone makers that these technologies would be well-suited for their products.
Sony and ZMP will get everything started in August, so let’s just sit tight and see what happens. What do you think of this deal? Were you hoping to see Sony drones coming to your nearest store? I personally think we have great consumer options right now, and Sony did well focusing on a more specialized market.