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FLYING CARS?! That’s right. At its 2nd annual Elevate Summit, Uber showcased their vision for UberAir, an on-demand air-taxi service. And it could be happening sooner than you might think. Imagine redeeming Capital One Venture miles or other types of credit card points to offset the cost of an UberAir flight!
Here’s a video of Uber’s Chief Product Officer and Director of Engineering explaining more about the concept!
Uber says their first test flights will begin in 2020 and commercial operations could start as early as 2023. If everything goes right we could be traveling via flying car within the next 5 years! **MIND BLOWN**
The vehicles look like mini-electric helicopters, which work off of rechargeable batteries and travel up to 2,000 feet above the ground at speeds anywhere between 150 to 200 miles per hour. The “skyport” where the vehicles will land is essentially a helicopter landing pad. Ideally, Uber hopes to build these pads on existing infrastructure, like building rooftops or parking garages. Uber officials say the skyports would be able to accommodate 200 takeoffs and landings every hour.
To start, Uber says they are going to launch the electric vehicles in 3 cites – Dallas, Los Angeles, and an international city that is still being decided.
The idea sounds straight out of a science fiction movie. But it gets better. Uber has designed “sky lanes” which are essentially roads in the sky, which would be highly controlled and regulated to avoid collisions. Uber’s Jeff Holden says Uber signed a Space Act Agreement with NASA to create the air traffic control system. The 2 organizations plan to work very closely to make this plan a reality.
Holden also predicts fares will be lower than using your own car, which is in line with Uber’s ethos of reducing congestion and lessening the need for personal car ownership.
Do you think this is plausible? Necessary? Too futuristic? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below!