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Understanding drone payloads

Posted by Conor Ferguson on Sep 14, 2021 8:45:00 AM
Conor Ferguson

Understanding drone payloads is essential to get the most value out of your drone investment and to actually help you make the best drone purchasing decisions in the first place. With so many features to consider and prioritize during the buying process, taking a close look at payload options may fall to the wayside. 


Every drone user has gotten burned in the past by a drone manufacturer that promised their drones could deliver on the functionality you needed...when in reality, that drone fell short. Overpromising and under-delivering drones doesn’t just frustrate you as a drone pilot, they can significantly hurt your business. The ability for your drone to carry the weight of your necessary payloads; however, is not somewhere you can afford for your purchase to underdeliver.


In this post, we’ll provide you with an understanding of drone payloads so that you can make the best purchasing decisions for your business.

What are drone payloads?

Let’s start with an understanding of the basics of drone payloads and specifically, the definition of a payload. Quite simply, a payload is the weight your drone can carry. That weight could come from additions like extra cameras sensors, or deliveries, depending on the application of your drone. 

Why are drone payloads important? 

In our experience as drone pilots, our team has always prioritized payload at or near the top when making a purchase decision. That’s because moving payload too far down the list of priorities can end up costing your business in the end. Many drone pilots are forced to purchase several drones due to payload inflexibility. As we mentioned above, a drone manufacturer promises one capability, but when you get out into the real world with your new drone, it’s not able to deliver on that promise. 


You’re out a solid $5,000 to $10,000+ and worse, you’re not able to deliver for your business and/or clients.

What are important payload factors to consider? 

The weight of your typical drone payloads

Most importantly, your commercial drone must be able to carry the weight of your typical payload. If your payloads vary, consider drones with varying payloads from the same manufacturer to reduce downtime between jobs, for cost savings, simpler maintenance and ongoing cost of drone ownership. 


At Wispr, we worked closely with drone pilots and businesses across the country when designing our US-built fleet of drones. Our Scout and Ranger drones handle a range of payloads to meet all your needs.


When researching and comparing drones, it’s important to be clear on whether stated flight times are with or without payloads to ensure your drone can deliver on the expectations (and needs) of you and your business.

Versatility and control of your payloads

There are many “affordable” drones on the market that cut corners where it matters most. These cuts can often affect payload versatility. You’ll want ongoing support when integrating new payloads, and that support can vary widely between manufacturers.


Controlling your payload during flight is another important component to consider when researching commercial drones. Wispr drones have on-board computers with our proprietary flight app, WISPr Air OS, allowing you to easily and securely configure and control your payload. Your drone should have USB, ethernet, serial and PWM ports to offer maximum flexibility and capabilities for your payloads. If a drone manufacturer isn’t actively promoting these features on their drones, that flexibility and function isn’t likely to be included with the drone. 

Need drones that can handle your payloads? 

Wispr drones were designed and built in the USA by drone experts. We back up our rugged, versatile commercial drones with industry-leading service and support. To learn more about our drones and reach a member of our team, contact us today. 

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