Topping Gabriel Gonzalez's Christmas list this year is not the customary video game or action figure usually seen on an 11-year-old boy's list. Instead, the Sayreville, New Jersey, resident asked his parents for a drone.
If he gets his wish, on Christmas morning Gabriel will be joining the millions of other drone hobbyists who have already taken flight this year.
"The biggest draw for drones is aerial photography and video," said Mike Blades, senior industry analyst for aerospace and defense at Frost & Sullivan.
According to Gabriel's father, Fernando, his son became interested in UAVs, or unmanned aerial vehicles, a few months ago after seeing YouTube postings of personal drone footage—everything from drones flying through fireworks displays and capturing aerial views of killer whales in British Columbia's Johnson Strait to police activity on the streets of California and kids surfing monster waves in Newport Beach.