Where Are DJI Drones Made?

David Lemay16 Jul 2022

The very first commercial drone, the Parrot AR drone, was launched in 2010 and sparked a flurry of interest in drones. DJI swiftly eclipsed the Parrot in prominence after launching the DJI Phantom drone, an elegant drone that was ready for takeoff out of the box and — at the time — included a GoPro attachment, although most DJI drones now have built-in cameras.

Nevertheless, one thing has remained constant: the drone market has been dominated by DJI since the launch of the Phantom. According to an assessment of FAA drone registration numbers completed in 2019, DJI had a roughly 80% market share at that time.

It's no wonder DJI's drones are the most popular. DJI has a drone for every use, from a photographer's favourite to industrial and educational drones. They even have a fun, high-flying selfie drone and a crop-spraying one.  In 2021, three-and-a-half outstanding drones were added to the collection with the debut of new, more modern drone types.

Where Are DJI Drones Made?

Finding a drone that works for you could be tricky. Hence, how and where the drone is made could be significant information that could help a drone buyer make a decision.

For many people, DJI is a household name, but where do DJI drones come from?

 DJI drones are manufactured in China. DJI has two factories located in Shenzhen and Tianjin. Most drones are built at the Shenzhen plant, while the Tianjin factory is more focused on technology and development. Learning where a prospective drone of choice is manufactured and where it can be purchased could help you make your buying decision.  This is significant since, for example, drones manufactured in China might demand the installation of an app on the smartphones of drone users in other parts of the world, which could be a controversial topic for debate.

It's for this reason that the U.S. drone sector has a stronger incentive to purchase from U.S. drone manufacturers. U.S. manufacturers should be used if you are operating drones for the federal government or some private firms. An executive order was issued by the Trump administration in the early months of 2020 banning all foreign-made drones on the grounds of national security.

Where Do DJI Drones Ship From?

DJI was established in China's "Silicon Valley," a city that borders Hong Kong. Shenzhen, where DJI is based, is also home to a slew of other well-known Chinese electronics businesses. The region's ecology of tech production has drawn many hardware companies from throughout the world, in everything from the iPhone to several other electronic products being built there. An abundance of skilled workers, a robust regional economy, and a well-developed shipping network made this area ideal for manufacturing.

Currently, DJI has offices across the world, including in the US, the Netherlands, Germany, Japan, South Korea, Beijing and Shanghai. DJI's German headquarters concentrate on hardware design while its US headquarters concentrate on software development and support for the company's DJI drones, repair services, and overall brand image, as well as lobbying for appropriate US drone laws. The offices in the Netherlands are primarily responsible for product support and service, whereas the ones in Japan are responsible for research and development.

All DJI shipments originate from China and then arrive in their different warehouses located in different parts of the world.

Where Is DJI Located in the US?

DJI is based in Cerritos, California, although the business itself is based in China. DJI may want to be able to claim that its drones are manufactured in the United States. Officials from government agencies throughout the world can now purchase a "DJI Government Edition" drone from DJI, which is designed for operation in high-security settings and differs significantly from the DJI consumer model in that it does not transmit data, software updates are subject to approval, and hardware pairing is restricted.

DJI's offering may merely be an attempt to get around regulatory prohibitions in the US on Chinese-manufactured drones.

DJI Background

The DJI is a Chinese corporation, however, they are manufactured in Cerritos, California.   DJI was created in Shenzhen, China, at first. As DJI expanded, it currently has offices in different places all over the world.

DJI is perhaps the industry's leading drone company. They are well-known for the  DJI Mavic series, the DJI Spark series and the DJI Phantom series. They provide professional and corporate drones at a reasonable price, which is the secret behind their huge customer base.

DJI and the US Government

A group of U.S. officials has suspected DJI of leaking classified drone data to China. A notice from the U.S. Army ordering all employees to stop using DJI drones due to security concerns sparked much controversy. Chinese-made drones are suspected of data theft, according to a Department of Homeland Security memo dated 2019 titled "Chinese Manufactured Unmanned Aircraft Systems."

A bipartisan group of U.S. lawmakers have introduced legislation that would prohibit government agencies from purchasing drones from China and other countries with issues of national security.  While this regulation could help US drone companies and dampen DJI's profitability, the fact that there are very few non-DJI drone alternatives could damage the wider drone sector, as well as other sectors such as public safety that count on drones.

Customers who are worried about their data being intercepted by unauthorized parties can turn to a limited group of competing drone companies for assistance.  

Are There Drones Made in the US?

There are several advantages to buying American-made items, including helping your local economy and receiving perhaps superior customer service. But there's a stronger motive to purchase from American drone manufacturers in the drone community.

In fact, if you operate drones for the government, as well as certain private firms, you don't have a choice. Many business and government agencies have banned drones built outside of the United States.

"Made in the USA" is a fairly ambiguous word, and what it "really" implies varies depending on who you ask. According to the Federal Trade Commission, "Made in the USA" signifies that "all or almost all" of the goods were manufactured in the United States. That implies that all-important parts, processing, and labor that go into the product should be of U.S. origin. Putting the "Made in USA" label on your goods legally entails Customs and Border Patrol obligations, as well as FTC standards.

So, are there drones manufactured in the United States? Yes, there are many drones made in the United States, but there are some grey areas so it can be confusing if they are indeed made in the USA.

While knowing where your drone is built is important, the drone's quality should come first. For this reason, it doesn't matter where a drone is manufactured. The quality of your drone should not be an issue provided you buy it from a legal and reputable dealer.

David Lemay

David Lemay

I'm David Lemay, a lover of tech and have had an interest in drones for years. Bought my first few drones, before I started building my own. I want to share my passion with others, so I started this site to help others who want to get into the hobby.

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