While Uber has been trying to pioneer self-driving technology, debuting its first self-driving taxis in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania last month, Uber is now looking at “vertical take off and landing” (VTOL) technology. This VTOL technology will allow Uber riders to beat city traffic by taking their rides to the skies –in passenger drones. While we are most likely years away from widespread use of passenger drones, Uber’s head of product, Jeff Holden, said, “VTOL aircraft could have multiple rotors, could have fixed wings and perhaps eventually would use batteries and be more silent.” This is a whole new world of transportation. Holden says, “Uber wants to offer our customers as many options as possible to move around. Doing it in a three-dimensional way is an obvious thing to look at. It could change cities and how we work and live.”
Other companies are also researching VTOL and self-flying drone technology –passenger drones are in fact being deployed by Airbus and the prototype is set to fly by the end of 2017. And Holden says that Uber drones could be in the air within the next decade.