How geofencing affects drones is something that you may have wondered about. If you have heard of drone geofencing but don’t know what it means, this post is just about that, so read on to find out!

Many privacy-related and security issues have surfaced recently because careless drone operators fly their drones over restricted airspace. It’s not possible to restrict people from flying their drones with just a sign that says No Drones Allowed. Geofencing, which works on GPS or cellular, or Bluetooth beacons, is an easy way to prevent drones from entering a certain area.

Still confused?

Let’s talk about drone geofencing.

How Does Geofencing Work?

Geofencing means putting a barrier along a geographical perimeter. Still, when talking about drones, it means a virtual barrier or a geofence set up around a physical location with the help of a Global Positioning System (GPS), Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), Bluetooth, or any other technology.

The idea was patented by inventor Michael Dimino in 1995 after its discovery five years ago. Back then, geofencing was used to track and locate stuff anywhere in the world with the help of GPS and GSM technology.

drone geofencing- how geofencing can stop a drone

The idea behind geofencing is quite simple- you may have seen sensors activated when an intruder enters your home. Similarly, sensors are triggered when a drone tries to enter a designated area.

So, if you have an area you don’t want others to peek inside or don’t want drones and UAVs to stay away from spaces like prisons, museums, airports, government offices, military headquarters, etc., all you need to do is set up a geofence around the area.

What if you wanted to keep a certain drone from leaving an area? You could do that too- as you can see, it can come in handy.

Drones know where they are in the air and keep a steady position by tracking the GPS coordinates thanks to the GPS module built into them.

Say you have an area you want to be off-limits to drones- you need to tell the drone that those coordinates are no-fly zones and specify default behavior for when the drone approaches that area. Most drones will reach the ground when they detect a no-fly zone, and some might hover in the air. If you’re already inside a drone geofence, the drone may refuse to take off.

These measures may seem extreme but are usually built into the drone you get- manufacturers do this, so drone operators don’t cause a nuisance by breaking FAA rules.

Why Is Geofencing Great?

You may think that restricting where your drone can fly is something that takes away your freedom. Well, you need to consider that if drone pilots were allowed to fly near airports, it could interfere with airplanes’ signals. Remember how airlines want you to keep your smartphone in flight mode before the plane takes off?

Rules like these are kept for your safety- it’s something you should consider as a responsible citizen.

Geofencing allows governments to restrict drone flights around sensitive locations- without needing any physical structures- which certainly saves a lot of costs. It would also be impractical to build tall walls around prisons and airports that UAVs cannot cross since these gadgets could easily fly hundreds of meters above the ground.

no drones allowed- drone restricted areas geofencing

The no-fly zones are also tightly regulated- and tracked by digital systems, so it’s very flexible. In the rare case you need to fly over someplace, you get an unlock code by providing appropriate documents. It’s not that hard, but your reason needs to be valid.

Even if you don’t want to use GPS for some reason, you can still set up geofencing perimeters with the help of Bluetooth or cellular data, or WiFi. You can also implement a similar setup with RFIDs, so this technology is quite versatile.

The best thing about geofencing is that you don’t need to set up your API or backend to get started- you can use a third-party app like It’s super easy to get started with geofencing – you need to give the drone location access and have some app installed on your phone that lets your drone monitor other drones in the area and check for no-fly zones.

Geofencing isn’t limited to just drones either- the power of this technology lies in the fact that you can easily set up geofencing around your home, restaurant, or office so you can send notifications to the devices in the radius you defined. The person within the radius needs to have the app installed, but still, it’s a pretty handy feature.

Where Drone Geofencing Would Have Problems

The technology that you choose for drone geofencing may have some flaws of its own. Using GPS, for example, will draw more energy from your drone battery than some other technology like Bluetooth. Finding ways to improve drone battery life can be tricky, so geofences with your old drones can also cause frustrations down the road.

GPS doesn’t work well indoors- so that would also be a major concern if you plan to use geofencing inside your home.

Manufacturers like DJI also push limits on their hardware with the DJI GEO app, so you cannot fly near restricted areas like the military or government offices. While some drones can be unlocked, most drones’ systems cannot be tampered with.

Closing Thoughts

Drone geofencing is a feature that has become even more relevant at present. Preventing a drone from entering secure spaces can come in very handy; this enforces better security and privacy practices and helps the authorities monitor unauthorized UAVs to track illegal activities.

While some manufacturers have locked down their hardware, some let the operators decide. So, if you don’t have a drone with built-in geofencing, you should carefully check the no-fly zones.

If you found this article helpful, you may also find our guide to choosing the best drone very informative.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do all drones have geofencing?

Not all drones have geofencing. If you are considering getting a drone, you might want to look into the state laws first, as owning a drone without geofencing can sometimes be illegal.

What is the purpose of geofencing?

Geofencing can be used to track the location of drones quite accurately. It also prevents your drone from flying into restricted areas where you might get into trouble for flying your drone without a permit.

What technology does geofencing use?

While most drones use GPS technology, you can also use Bluetooth beacons or RFID. You can also try amplifiers so your drone can perceive the signals more accurately.

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