Look it’s a bird, it’s a plane, no it’s a #drone – 4BC, ABC Wide Bay, ABC Far North, Southern Cross Austereo WA

40 uses for dronesThe number of drone related media releases, stories, contacts and media requests I have had over the past few weeks has gone into overdrive.

Australia Post’s announcement that they would trial drone deliveries in remote areas brought the story back to Australia and although this is a great thing for them to trial and definitely part of a future landscape for them, I am skeptical if there is real intent or just hype behind this announcement.

On a side bar the more interesting things in Australia Posts’ announcement is their trial of 3D printers in their retail stores and their $20 million innovation and invention partnership with Melbourne University, but back to drones…

In last week’s regular segment with Hong Kong Radio’s  Phil Whelan we chatted about why Wal-Mart, Google, Facebook, Amazon and others  are all going crazy over #drones, and what the imminent American drones registration legislation might mean for drone registration worldwide, but equally as fascinating is the seemingly endless list of ingenious tasks people are already using drones for including:

Cattle Mustering


Emergency Medical Delivery

How about drones finding and fixing street potholes.

What about Police taser drones, or how about criminals using drones to spy on whether police vehicles are coming?

The list is endless and we are just at the beginning of this revolution.

I’m not quite convinced that we will have to swat away swarms of these pesky electronic mosquitoes in our near future, although 1 million recreational drones are expected to be sold in the USA and 50,000 in Australia this Christmas, but we will definitely become increasingly comfortable with their presence as they move from remote and regional, hard to get to, war-torn and disaster areas into our cities and towns.

Have a listen to these interviews and then share your thoughts and uses for drones.

David Dowsett – ABC Wide Bay – Monday 2nd November – 8 minutes 39 seconds

Phil Staley – ABC Far North – Monday 2nd November – 15 minutes 50 seconds

Anthony Tilley – Austereo WA – welcome on board as a regular Tuesday 3rd November – 5 minutes 34 seconds

Clare Blake – 4BC – Tuesday 3rd November – 17 minutes 21 seconds

#Drones on Hinch Live / Sky Business TV

IMG_7609 (2)What do drones, Australia Post, Amazon, Walmart, Google and Facebook have in common?

It appears a lot, with all of them (and many others) ramping up their efforts to use drones for delivery of everything from parcels to the internet.

In my regular catch up with Sky Business’s Derryn Hinch we explore what drones are, some of the many ways they may be used in the near future and debate the question of whether drones should be registered.

Not coming to a mailbox near you | ABC Brisbane

20140904001025157457-originalOn the back of approval to increase postal prices in Australia and bring in a two tier delivery system, Tim Cox of ABC Local Brisbane and I caught up to look at the future of traditional postal services.

Some quick stats are that Australian’s post around 5.1 billion items each year, down 4.9% year on year or 1 billion items less than 2008, has 4,415 outlets and 34,400 employees and it operates its delivery services under Government legislation.

This is a living breathing example of an industry that at its hay-day was seen as being invincible, but with the march of time is becoming increasingly irrelevant as disruptors abound, culture changes and the need for speed increases.

The new price and service I think is a reasonable response to a government sanctioned monopoly that ensures that everybody is able to send and receive mail and as caller Jeff, who lives in far north Queensland and totally off the grid, said that he travels over a half an hour to get or send mail and it is his only physical contact with the outside world and without it he would be totally disconnected.

Aust_Post_mjr_segmentsThe other issue is that individuals only account for 2.1% of all mail sent, with business to business mail accounting for 45.4%, business to consumer accounting for 36.2% and government communication accounting for 16.3% and it is the increase in  us receiving our bills, statements and notices online that is causing the decline and will ensure its eminent irrelevance.

The future holds a time where digital mail will abound and snail mail will be a curiosity used for special occasions and relegated to the romantic days which include the sending and receiving aerograms and telegrams.

In this new space of communication, email is no certainty either as we live in an era of fractured communications where instead of one preferred way to communicate we move in out of tools like email, SMS, DM, What’s App, Pinterest and many others using each as appropriate to the person or group we’re speaking to and then moving to another format for other conversations.

The lesson here is that romance and nostalgia don’t pay the bill, that society does move on even from the giants and that we need to constantly recognise and confront what’s truly happening and evolve our thinking and products before we too become extinct.

Have a listen now (12 minutes)..