Heavy traffic and terrible roads are just two of the things that make a future with flying cars seem so attractive, especially in Africa, where the two problems listed are a common reality.
Flying cars could take one above all the ground hustle and get them to their destinations in more record time. The foremost company in ride-hailing services, Uber Technologies Inc., has already begun exploring the possibility of a future with flying cars, more like mini aircrafts that can take off and land for city use.
To that end, the company published a 98-page paper where it outlined research into the area. The paper is titled Fast-Forwarding to a Future of On-Demand Urban Air Transportation.
Uber, however, is not planning on undertaking the creation and building of these helicopter-like vehicles. It instead plans to organize a conference to discuss the development of what it calls VTOL (vertical takeoff and landing), referring to the ‘flying cars’ program as Uber Elevate.
Uber wrote in its paper;
“We also believe that in the long-term, VTOLs will be an affordable form of daily transportation for the masses, even less expensive than owning a car,”
“Rather than manufacture VTOL hardware ourselves, we instead look to collaborate with vehicle developers, regulators, city and national governments, and other community stakeholders, while bringing to the table a very fertile market of excited consumers and a clear vehicle and operations use case.”
With the research into this area, Travis Kalanick, Uber’s chief executive officer and co-founder, is joining others like Alphabet Inc. CEO Larry Page, who has already personally invested in startups building flying cars. In June, Bloomberg reported that Larry Page has already spent more than $100 million on Zee.Aero, a company involved in creating such flying vehicles.
Currently, Uber is investing more in creating self-driving vehicles of its own and the company has acknowledged that the vision for helicopter-like vehicles may take many years to develop.
According to the paper; “The vision portrayed above is ambitious, but we believe it is achievable in the coming decade.”