Flying cars have been a Sci-Fi prediction since rubber first hit the road with the street automobile, but the fantasy of flying cars has always been just that—a fantasy. For some reason, Uber thinks it can transform this pie-in-the-sky concept into actual vehicles cruising through the air.
Amidst a slew recent of scandals, including a lawsuit over allegations of stolen intellectual property and an active investigation into workplace sexism, Uber has some news. At the Uber Elevate summit today, Uber’s chief product officer Jeff Holden gave a keynote speech in which he provided more details about the company’s aggressive plan to introduce flying vehicles to the world. It plans to begin testing flying taxi services in Texas and Dubai by 2020.
You might recall Uber detailed its plans to create the world’s first functional air taxi in a white paper back in October. The paper described how Uber would use “on-demand aviation” to “improve urban mobility” and get people to their destinations faster than they ever could on the road. The key to accomplishing this goal, according to the white paper, is to build “a network of small, electric aircraft that take off and land vertically.” These types of aircrafts are more commonly referred to by aviation experts as VTOLs.
According to Holden’s keynote speech, Uber plans to begin flying these vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) vehicles in cooperation with the cities of Dallas and Dubai by 2020. The company’s ultimate goal is to allow customers to simply “push a button” and get picked up by a flying vehicle for travel in and around the city. Holden explained that Uber hopes the aviation service will be commercially available in both cities by 2023. How very ambitious!
Article source: Gizmodo