Flying cars won't only be seen on the silver screen in the near future. According to reports, India is one of the five countries shortlisted to get Uber Air City in the next five years, as announced by the company at the Uber Elevate Asia Pacific Expo. Uber's flying programme shortlisted India after considering multiple countries. Called Uber Elevate (aerial taxi arm), the programme will be rolled out in India, Japan, Australia, Brazil and France. Dallas and Los Angeles in the US have already been selected for the programme. During the second annual Uber Elevate Summit in May, Uber announced it was looking for an international city as a third partner.
"We are proud to host the first ever Uber Elevate Asia Pacific Expo. We are announcing a shortlist of five countries where Uber Air can immediately transform transportation and take our technology to new heights," said Eric Allison, Head of Uber Aviation Programmes, as mentioned in IANS.
The company further stated that the Uber Elevate team is inviting conversations with stakeholders across major cities in the aforementioned five countries and will announce the Uber Air International City within the next six months.
Uber Elevate further said that the decision would be made based on three parameters - sizeable market, local commitment and enabling conditions.
In a statement the company said, "Mumbai, Delhi, and Bengaluru are some of the most congested cities in the world, where travelling even a few kilometres can take over an hour. Uber Air has a tremendous potential to help create a transportation option that goes over congestion, instead of adding to it."
While it may appear that Uber's flying programme is focussed on taxi services, it is not quite so. Uber Elevate will also experiment with drone delivery for UberEats.
If things go according to plan, Indian cities including Mumbai, Delhi and Bengaluru could soon see the first pilot project. Like the Mumbai-Pune Hyperloop, the Uber flying project would also undergo a feasibility study.
To see this through Uber is partnering with automakers, tech companies and real estate developers. Uber has already partnered with Audi for flying cars.
As they say, the future is here.
(Edited by Anwesha Madhukalya)