A year later, it will be illegal to fly a drone in the same weight class without the technology under most circumstances. In some contexts, such as hovering over a large group of people, drones weighing less than 0.55 pounds will also need to broadcast their position. If you don’t incur the expense of upgrading your existing drone with Remote ID, you will still be able to fly it, but only in areas specially designated by the FAA. These fields do not yet exist, with the FAA planning to start accepting applications in 2022.
The FAA says this requirement is “a major step towards the full integration of drones into the national airspace system,” adding that the technology provides “crucial information to our national security agencies and our partners in charge of the airspace. law enforcement, as well as other officials responsible for ensuring public safety.
There are still a lot of details to work out. Notably, the FAA doesn’t say how far drones should broadcast their location, or how manufacturers should incorporate the technology into their products. We can expect these to be settled as 2022 and 2023 approach.