AT&T Exploring Artificial Intelligence for UAV Tower Inspections

Aiming for “next-level automation” for cell tower inspections with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), AT&T Labs, the research and development arm of AT&T, is teaming up with the company’s national drone team.

AT&T, which has partnered with major tech companies including Intel and Qualcomm to test UAVs on LTE networks, is now bringing together “drones, machine learning and video analytics,” according to a blog post from Mazin Gilbert, vice president of advanced technology at AT&T Labs.

Gilbert writes that AT&T has been hiring UAV companies for cell tower inspections, but now, the company is looking at automation in order to “do the job faster, better and more efficiently.”

With a goal of “full automation,” AT&T Labs has created a “deep learning-based algorithm that analyzes video footage and shows promise in detecting defects and anomalies.”

AT&T announced the trial launch of its “national drone program” last year. The goal is to test how UAVs can function on an LTE network, as well as explore other drone capabilities, including unmanned tower inspections.

The full blog from Gilbert – Drones & AI: The Next Phase of Automation – can be found here.

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