Airbus has set itself an ambitious goal: the company intends to start a pilot program involving flying taxis powered by artificial intelligence before then end of 2017.Teresa Hammerl
Uber may have announced the first self-driving taxis for the USA yesterday, but Airbus is taking that vision to the next level. As reported in Engadget , the first self-flying taxis will soon be tested for their usability. Airbus has named the project Vahana.
Passengers will one day be fetched by a Zenhop CityAirbus drone and brought to a helicopter landing pad. From there they can continue on to their destination, all at a similar price to a taxi. Each flight will be split between numerous passengers. Luggage must be transported separately, and an entire division of the company would be dedicated to protecting the vehicles against hackers.
A drone delivery service will also undergo pilot testing in 2017.
Airbus refers to its strategies as potential solutions to traffic problems in major cities. City traffic will be relocated from the ground to the skies. Instead of standing in traffic, the taxis would transport passengers via the air.
Airbus has not yet revealed just how the electrical aeronautic vehicles might look. A first sketch does provide fodder for the imagination, however.