The world famous Uber company presented its vision of a flying taxi. The concept can be seen at the annual Uber Elevate Summit, held May 8-9, 2018 in Los Angeles.
You ordered a taxi - will you go or will you fly?
It is assumed that the company will present a working model of such a vehicle by 2020 , and the appearance of an unusual taxi can already be estimated from its prototype. The design is similar to a drone with a lot of propellers.
The main propellers make vertical take-off and landing possible. The body of the taxi looks more like an airplane than a helicopter, the concept is not at all like a car. The device itself will not run on fuel, but on electricity, so unlike conventional helicopters and airplanes, a flying taxi will be quiet, efficient and cheaper to operate.
According to Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Uber, air taxis can be ordered through a mobile app. Boarding vehicles will be carried out at specially equipped parking lots on the roofs of suitable buildings. Now it will be possible not only to bypass traffic jams, but also to fly around.
In addition, the transport service plans to make this type of movement as accessible as possible. In order to reduce the cost of the trip, it is planned to add the possibility of placing up to four passengers on board, and thus save money for each client. For this, an algorithm for the selection of suitable travel companions will be developed.
According to Khosrowshahi, the corporation plans to build a network of this kind of taxi so that anyone who wants to have the opportunity to afford a long distance trip (or rather a flight) at affordable prices.
Uber drone was wrong
According to some sources, the rather early demonstration of the concept may be associated with an unpleasant incident involving an unmanned Uber car and a desire to distract attention from it.
In mid-March, in Arizona, a car moving on autopilot without the participation of the driver hit a cyclist who was driving in the wrong place on the highway. Everything happened in the dark, information is still being collected as part of the investigation, but interesting details have already begun to appear.
As the data obtained show, the traffic accident happened due to the fault of the software, or rather the wrong program settings. This refers to that part of the software installations that receive and analyze data from cameras, special sensors and instruct the unmanned vehicle to “ignore obstacles”.
The program should be configured in such a way that the car stops in front of really necessary serious objects. As representatives of the Uber service explain, this method of programming was forced, otherwise the car on autopilot would stop in front of every small thing or garbage that accidentally flew onto the road. A not fully thought out question, unfortunately, led to a traffic accident when a taxi ran into a person without reducing the speed.
The Topic of Article: Flying Taxi - the new reality from Uber.