Uber plans to test on-demand flying cars network by 2020

Artist's impression of flying car

In news:

The famous and controversial cab-hailing company Uber has unveiled plans to partner with aviation companies including Embraer and Bell Helicopter to develop and test a network of flying cars by the year 2020.

For the trials of these cars, Uber has chosen the US city of Dallas and Dubai in the United Arab Emirates.

But is it really the future?

Of course, being able to fly over congested urban areas can cut down a commuter’s transit time but the technology has remained largely unproven in the past.

With the advent of the latest and greatest in the tech world, the service will eventually cost about the same as its ‘regular’ car rides. Their vision is to make electric vehicles that can take off and land vertically like a helicopter, with zero emissions and minimal noise.

 

What this means for regular customers

Uber expects to be up and running the commercial services by the year 2023. The company is investing heavily in self-driving cars.

The company has quite a long way to go to convince passengers and aviation authorities that the technology is safe in city conditions. There is also a large question looming over the project about the regulations on the testing and introduction of this technology.

Other companies in this row:

A Dutch company, PAL-V has begun accepting pre-orders for five years after demonstrating its first successful flight, for what may be the first flying car to enter the commercial market.

The PAL-V Liberty takes form as an enclosed three-wheeler, with the propeller packed tightly to its roof when driving. To get in flight, the propeller and the tail blades expand and transform the vehicle into a gyrocopter.

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