Ride sharing and ride hailing is an idea that has taken the world by storm, be it in developed countries or in developing markets. It might have been given the boot in certain countries like Denmark, but overall, the taxi industry is a sunset one, and apps such as Uber and Lyft provide commuters with a safe, clean and comfortable option -- not to mention a far more affordable one. Uber might have its recent troubles, including privacy issues with Apple, but this does not mean that the company is about to roll over and give up. In fact, Uber has cast its eye on the future with the idea of flying cars. Will this particular business model actually take to the skies in the future? Only time will be able to tell.
Flying cars is an idea that has long been put forward in science fiction movies and books. After all, when there is simply no more avenue to build roads in major cities, and freeways end up being jammed all the time while it is impossible to add any more rail lines, where else can we go to but up? Uber’s flying cars project will certainly take some time to implement, but the company has ambition to test out a network for electric aircraft that takes off and land vertically by the time 2020 arrives. In other words, a helicopter-like vehicle, except that it is not a helicopter.
According to Uber, its partners in this initiative known as Elevate will include real estate companies, aircraft manufacturers, electric vehicle charger makers and the cities of Dubai, United Arab Emirates, and Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas. Urban aviation is seen to be the natural next step for Uber, and it remains to be seen whether other ride hailing companies share the same sentiment.
With lines on the road supposedly able to guide drivers, accidents still happen -- as drivers simply ignore those lines or are tired. What more when one takes to the skies? A trained pilot will know how disorienting it can be, and unless you have a landmark to know which side is up and which side is down, the idea of flying cars is a disaster waiting to happen. I doubt we will reach the stage anytime soon where in-air vehicles are fully automated, and will be able to fly in their proper lines and at the right speed just like how we see in science fiction movies.
Do you think Uber would be able to move forward in a more profitable manner for everyone by ensuring that they are no longer involved with sexual harassment cases, privacy issues in their apps, and simply trashing things out with governments across various markets to make Uber accessible to anyone and everyone with a compatible smartphone?
Alternatively, this might be a two pronged approach as Uber intends to have some positive spotlight shone in its direction with all of the issues that the company has embroiled itself in so far. Either way, we look forward to a successful implementation of flying transportation for the masses.