Quantcast
Connect with us

Uber names Melbourne as first non-US city for flying car program

Published

on

Uber on Tuesday selected Melbourne, Australia, as the first non-US city for its aerial ridesharing service that is expected to launch in 2023, as it unveiled new partners for the ambitious initiative.

Melbourne was named the third official pilot city for Uber Air, joining Dallas and Los Angeles. Test flights are to start in 2020 with commercial operations planned for 2023.

ADVERTISEMENT

The news came at the Uber Elevate Summit in Washington, where the California-based ride-hailing giant offered new details on its vision for flying taxis as a way to ease traffic congestion and improve urban mobility.

“Australian governments have adopted a forward-looking approach to ridesharing and future transport technology,” said Susan Anderson, Uber’s manager for the region that includes Australia.

“This, coupled with Melbourne’s unique demographic and geospatial factors, and culture of innovation and technology, makes Melbourne the perfect third launch city for Uber Air. We will see other Australian cities following soon after.”

Since first announcing its plan for shared aerial transport, Uber has been adding new partners and details for the initiative.

This week, Uber announced it was adding new aircraft partners to the program, including Pennsylvania-based Jaunt Air Mobility, which will produce a rotor- and fixed-wing light aircraft.

ADVERTISEMENT

Uber also revealed and air taxi cabin design in collaboration with French engineering group Safran.

“Together with Safran Cabin, we’ve designed for the first time in history, a bespoke aircraft cabin that is truly mission-driven for aerial ridesharing on Uber Air,” said John Badalamenti, Uber Elevate’s head of design.

Uber also displayed the concept Bell Nexus flying quadcopter vehicle unveiled this year, expected to be part of the Uber fleet, and new designs for its “skyports” that will make up the network for the aircraft.

ADVERTISEMENT

– Air rides ‘for masses’ –

The Uber Air service is designed to work in tandem with Uber’s car service as a “multimodal” option that helps speed passengers to their destinations.

ADVERTISEMENT

The aerial option will be included on the Uber smartphone app that will include ground and air transportation and pool travelers into one aircraft.

Uber last week announced a first step toward the aerial rideshare program, a helicopter service to New York’s John F. Kennedy Airport from lower Manhattan.

AFP / SAUL LOEB Dara Khosrowshahi, CEO of Uber Technologies, said the forthcoming Uber Air service is expected to be priced “for the masses versus just the elites”

Uber chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi said earlier Tuesday that the helicopters will eventually be replaced “by a generation of electrically powered vertical takeoff and landing vehicles.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Khosrowshahi said Uber’s large user base can help stimulate demand for aerial ridesharing.

“We want to get the industry moving and designing these vehicles so that they can be available for urban transportation,” he said in an on-stage interview sponsored by the Economic Club of Washington.

He added that “we want a pricing of this service that will be available for the masses versus just the elites.”

Eric Allison, head of Uber Elevate, told the conference the electric aircraft are “surprisingly efficient” and similar in cost to the standard UberX car service.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It will be something like $6 per seat mile,” Allison said. “We think we can do better than the price of UberX.”


Report typos and corrections to: [email protected].
READ COMMENTS - JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Police clash with George Floyd protesters in Minneapolis for second straight day

Published

on

On Wednesday, protests against the police killing of George Floyd continued — and once again, police and demonstrators clashed, with authorities using chemical agents to attempt to deter the crowds.

Protestors move further back into street after police shoot some kind of deterrent pic.twitter.com/yrvqziOMbD

— christine nguyen (@xinewin) May 27, 2020

Continue Reading

Breaking Banner

Texas Supreme Court triggers outrage by denying mail-in ballots to at-risk voters: ‘Brazen and corrupt’

Published

on

On Wednesday, the GOP-dominated Supreme Court of Texas ruled that voters cannot claim risk of coronavirus infection as a "disability" under Texas' absentee ballot eligibility law.

The decision triggered outrage immediately on social media, with some commenters noting that the justices themselves issued this decision remotely to keep themselves safe. Others noted that four of the justices themselves are up for re-election, and thus their own candidacies stand to be affected by the ruling.

Continue Reading
 

Breaking Banner

Trump administration preparing criminal indictment of Venezuela’s first lady: report

Published

on

The Trump administration is preparing criminal charges against the spouse of a foreign leader at odds with the administration, according to a new report.

"The United States is preparing to charge the wife of Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro in coming months with crimes that could include drug trafficking and corruption," Reuters reported Wednesday, citing "four people familiar with the case."

Continue Reading
 
 
You need honest news coverage. Help us deliver it. Join Raw Story Investigates for $1. Go ad-free.
close-image