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Learn how to create annotations on your DroneDeploy maps to analyze them and share the results.


Compatible Browsers

Please note that annotations, just like all of DroneDeploy, work best on Google Chrome.


Article Sections: 



Overview of the Toolbox

Before we dig into the different annotation types, it's worth going over the general annotation controls. If you look at the sidebar on the right, you can see Annotations and Tools options:

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 12.36.43 PM.png Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 12.47.17 PM.png

For each annotation you create you can apply these features below: 

  • Get a link to the annotation
    • The end user needs to have a DroneDeploy account and have access to the project 
  • Duplicate 
    • The duplicate button will make a copy of the annotation
  • Delete
    • Permanently remove the annotation (no restore option available) 
  • Color 
    • Change the color of any annotation by selecting the colored circle next to the name
Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 2.18.42 PM.png

Once an annotation is created you can Move and Rotate as needed:

  • Move
    • Click and hold the Move button (cross with arrows below) to move the annotation around the map
  • Rotate
    • Click and drag the Rotate button to rotate the annotation
    • Available for all annotations except for Circles


Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 2.32.57 PM.png

Filtering and Sorting Annotations

The Annotation menu on the left side panel allows you to:

  • Search for specific annotations by title and use the Filter menu to filter annotations by type.
  • Sort options to organize annotations according to the date created or the date modified.
Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.18.45 PM.png

Copying Annotations

You can copy your selected annotations from one map to another within the same project. Read more on this feature here. 



Lock Annotations 

Available for Individual, Advanced, Teams and Enterprise subscriptions 

Project Editors can now utilize the Lock and Unlock feature for all annotations. Simply click the Lock button at the top of the annotation side panel to block any further edits. 

Screenshot 2024-01-18 at 3.53.55 PM.png


When locked you will see a notice at the top of the Annotation side panel:

Screenshot 2024-01-18 at 3.54.14 PM.png


Hot Keys 

Available for Individual, Advanced, Teams and Enterprise subscriptions 

  • Copy link
    • Cmd + C / Ctrl + С
  • Duplicate
    • Cmd + V / Ctrl + V
  • Delete
    • Delete /Backspace
  • Lock-Unlock
    • Cmd + L / Ctrl + L
    • Prevent from accidentally changing annotations.


Grouping and Ungrouping Annotations 

Users can now group annotations into folders.

You can group annotations by name, by type, by creator, by object type, or measurement type.


How to group Annotations:

  1. Select the annotations you want to group in the left side panel in the EXPLORE tab.

  2. Click the folder icon at the top right side.

  3. Select an existing group or create a new group.

  4. Your annotations are now grouped within the folder.

How to ungroup Annotations:
Users can delete the annotation groups by clicking 3 dots at the end of the annotation group card.

  1. Click the 3 dot menu at the annotation group

  2. Select delete option

  3. If you want to not only delete the group and ungroup the annotations but also delete annotations, check “delete annotations” box in the pop-up.

*note, locked annotations won’t be grouped nor deleted from the groups.


GIF below shows how to create groups, ungroup, and delete:

grouping .gif


Annotation Types: 

Point  Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 12.46.45 PM.png

If you want to annotate a specific point on your map, this is the tool for you. Once the Point annotation is selected, you'll be asked to select a point on the map.

The Point Annotation includes: 

  • Change the name of the annotation 
  • View who added the annotation and when 
  • Latitude & Longitude 
  • Elevation
  • Images of the location
  • Issue Creation (will not populate on the Issue Report)
  • Add a comment & attachment 

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 12.45.53 PM.png



Distance Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.00.47 PM.png

The Distance or line tool will allow you to measure the length of a straight line or a series of lines.

A Distance annotation includes: 

  • Change the name of the annotation 
  • View who added the annotation and when 
  • Length: a 3D length - hypotenuse if you think of a right triangle. This is the actual length from point A to point B.
  • Horizontal Length: a 2D projection - adjacent side in a right triangle. Horizontal distance between two vertices
  • Surface Length: Calculation of area beneath the distance profile. The distance over the processed orthomosaic (including surface objects). 
  • Cross Section: the area under the surface profile.
  • Slope: the degree of incline from the initial to the final point of a surface profile.
  • Vertical Height: projection of the 2D change in elevation between the beginning and end of a line annotation
  • Surface Profile Graph + CSV export
  • Issue Creation (will not populate on the Issue Report)
  • Add comment & attachment 

Note: See more information on the Surface / Elevation profile here

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.02.19 PM.png

Distance annotation is the blue line measuring the length of the building




Area Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.21.54 PM.png

Note: Be aware of larger area annotations. If an area is too large, we will be unable to calculate the annotation data. If you run into this issue, please try to simplify your annotation shape or reach out to for help. 


Select the Area tool to outline a specific section of your map. To close the area annotation, click on the first point, or double-click on your last point.

The Area Annotation includes: 

  • Change the name of the annotation 
  • View who added the annotation and when 
  • Area Measurement (2D)
  • Surface Area (3D): the surface area is the 3D calculation. The 3D measurement should always be larger than the 2D measurement.

    Area (2D): The area is the measurement of the space occupied by any two-dimensional geometric shape. The area of any shape depends upon its dimensions. The area of a shape is calculated in square units (sq units). As the area is measured for a two-dimensional object it has two dimensions length and width.


    Surface Area (3D): The surface area is the area calculated for the three-dimensional object. As the three-dimensional object is made up of 2D faces, the surface area is the sum of the areas of all the faces of the figure. 

  • Issue Creation (will not populate on the Issue Report)
  • Add comment & attachment 

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.36.40 PM.png

Surface Area Calculation

The cross-sectional area calculation is intended to measure a cross-section in order to estimate the amount of the material underneath the 2D distance annotation. 

The calculation is based on the area below or above the surface area line.
The baseline for this calculation is a straight line between point A and point B.



*Note: The cross-section area calculation assumes that either the + or the - is being measured. It will output whichever absolute number is larger. In most cases, the area will be positive.


Volume Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.53.52 PM.png

There are two Volume tools available for our Advanced, Teams, and Enterprise users.

1. Terrain Edits (see more information here) Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 1.54.13 PM.png

2. Volume Annotation


To learn more about volume calculation with DroneDeploy, please visit our Volume Measurement with Drones page. 

A Volume Annotation includes:




Rectangle Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 2.06.10 PM.png

The Rectangle annotation is a form of Area annotation that can be drawn on 2D maps. Users are able to create rectangles by dragging the annotation over a specific area or they can predefine the rectangle width and length.


  • Rectangle annotations can be viewed in the 3D space, but cannot be created or adjusted. 
  • We use standard geospatial corrections to calculate the area from the input of horizontal width length. In the case of extra large rectangles, that may result in slight discrepancies in area geometry calculation. The geospatial recalculated area may appear slightly larger than the geometrical calculation of the rectangle area.

The Rectangle annotation includes: 

  • Change the name of the annotation 
  • View who added the annotation and when 
  • Area 
  • Surface Area (see Area annotation above for more information)
  • Set Horizontal Length 
  • Set Horizontal Width 
  • Issue Creation (will not populate on the Issue Report)
  • Add comment & attachment 

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 2.09.35 PM.png


Radius Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.02.56 PM.png

The Radius annotation will allow you to place a perfect circle measurement on your map. 

Note: the radius annotation is only available in 2D.


The Radius annotation includes: 

  • Change the name of the annotation 
  • View who added the annotation and when 
  • Lat/Long 
  • Area
  • Perimeter
  • Manual Radius selection
  • Issue Creation (will not populate on the Issue Report)
  • Add comment & attachment 


Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.03.27 PM.png



Count Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.34.04 PM.png

See our guide on Counting objects here

If you are looking for AI Counting, check out our guide on AI Annotations (beta) here



Stocklpile AI Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.36.59 PM.png

See our guide on Stockpile AI here!



Issues (Point & Area) Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 3.41.36 PM.png

See our guide on Issue Reporting here! 




3D Annotations

Note: check out this guide for more information on 3D annotations


All of these annotations above are available to use on your 3D Model. 3D Annotations bring you a more efficient and accurate noting in 3D mode for precision, accuracy, and a better experience when annotating your model.





Sharing Annotations

Note: To learn more about sharing as a whole, see our Data Sharing guide. 


Sharing privately

  • Share Privately by adding a DroneDeploy user to the Project via email.

When sharing privately, other users can view, add, and reply to existing annotations. This allows you to get external advice on a field, as well as highlight any issues you may find on other users' maps. Other users can then create conversations around your data.

Note: the visibility status of each annotation is currently saved to the map, meaning that if user A turns off the annotation for Stockpile 1 and then the shared user B goes to view the annotation on the map, Stockpile 1 will still appear turned off.


Sharing Publicly

When sharing publicly others will be able to view your annotations, but these will be at a read-only level




How do I change the measured units of an annotation? 

To change your preferred units for annotations, navigate to your Account Preferences. From here, you can select imperial or metric units:

Screenshot 2023-11-07 at 12.43.05 PM.png

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