LINCOLN, Neb. and CHAMPAIGN, Ill.: The need for speed in journalism led to the birth of news helicopters – first to cover traffic for radio stations, then to cover breaking events for television. But choppers aren’t cheap: an investment in covering a single story can run well into the thousands of dollars.
Enter the UAV, or unmanned aerial vehicle – more commonly known as the drone. Military versions have become familiar in anti-terrorist warfare, and toy editions equipped with cameras are starting to be seen in playgrounds. In just three years, under new federal rules, commercial versions of these pilotless devices are poised for takeoff. They will usher in a new era in newsgathering. Courtesy TV Technology.