Technology is in the process of completely transforming all aspects of 4 industries – construction, medicine, retail, and transport – with a significant reduction in the need for human labor. Here is the impact on the Transport Industry:

  • The return of electric-motorized vehicles (invented in 1884; by the early 1900s, nearly 40% of American cars were electric) will decimate the current car industry infrastructure (dealers, maintenance and repair, gas stations). Nearly 20 major countries have stated their intent to phase out combustion engines.
  • The development of autonomous vehicles (cars, buses, trucks, trains, ships, and aircraft) will increase travel safety, while not requiring human control.
  • Vehicle sharing/renting (Uber, Lyft) will reduce car ownership, especially in cities, which will reduce the need for parking spaces, freeing up large areas for pedestrian traffic. Garages will be turned into mini-apartments.
  • High-speed inter-city travel (via trains or hyperloop tunnels) will enable long distance commuting.
  • The time for Inter-continental travel will also be greatly reduced (hyperloop, space travel).
  • Flying taxis will start operating in a few cities world-wide in 2020.
  • Elon Musk has innovative businesses involving many of the above: Tesla (autonomous electric vehicles), Solar City (batteries), The Boring Company (tunnels for hyperloop travel), Space X (hyperloop, inter-continental travel).

The technologies involved in the above include electric motors, energy storage (electric car batteries), AI (autonomous operation), hyperloop (inter-city travel), drones (flying taxis), reusable space shuttles (inter-continental travel), virtual reality (travel booking)..

The number of jobs in the Transport Industry will be significantly reduced:

  • Autonomous operation will eliminate the need for truck drivers and couriers (including pizza delivery drivers), and reduce the need for ship crews and aircraft pilots.
  • Electric cars will reduce the need for car salespeople, distributorships, and mechanics.



Uber to offer flying taxi service by 2020 (AI/Flying Taxis – 2017-04 – ZDNet)


A close look at uberAIR, a ridesharing network for the sky (AI/Flying Taxis - 2018-05 - TechCrunch)

Uber’s flying taxis present new ways to shorten trips made long by distance or traffic congestion. Uber plans to start testing air taxis in 2020 with start-up in 2023. uberAIR will offer aerial electric ride-hailing and other air transport services, which will be cheaper than car ownership on a per-passenger, per-mile basis, as well as eventually autonomous. Partnerships are being developed with cities for testing, 70+ companies to provide eVTOLs, skyports, and batteries, and the FAA and NASA for ar traffic control.

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Personal, robotic transportation by drone will be tested in Dubai and Las Vegas (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2018-02 - Popular Science)

A major Chinese drone maker is testing it’s Ehang 184 flying taxi, providing personal, robotic transportation by drone. After >1,000 tests in a broad range of conditions, more test will start in Dubai and Las Vegas. It can fly for 10 miles at speeds of up to 80 mph, but for only 23 minutes. Competitors include Airbus.

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Dubai delays licensing autonomous air taxis for 5 years while establishing safety protocols (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2017-09 - CTVNews)

Dubai is considering two autonomous air taxi versions. One, the 18-rotor Volocopter, has a maximum flying time of 30 minutes at 50 kph, with a maximum airspeed of 100 kph. Batteries charged in climate-controlled areas near the pads would be swapped in as needed. Dubai will take the next five years to come up with laws and develop safety procedures.

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Swiss Company introduces new commuter drone to be launched by 2018 (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2017-09 -

A Swiss company, PassengerDrone, introduced a two-seater, 8-rotor, 3-landing-wheel prototype commuter drone, which can fly at a speed of up to 80 km/h and is operated via a touchscreen. Testing started in May 2017, with launch planned in 2018, at a cost of $15-200,000. Competition is expected from Kitty Hawk and Daimler, and various world universities, including MIT.

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Uber sets 'flying car' launch for 2020 (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2017-04 - RelaxNews)

Uber announced partnerships with Dubai and the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolis in Texas to manufacture “vertical takeoff and landing” vehicles, and put networks (dubbed Uber Elevate) in place by 2020 with full-scale operations in Texas by 2023. Manufacturing will involve US-based Bell Helicopter, Brazil’s Embraer, and Slovenia’s Pipistrel.

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18-rotor electric ‘flying taxi’ for 2018 (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2017-04 - The Verge)

E-Volo, a German aviation startup, has been using ultralight, electrically powered “multicopter” technology for several years. Its Volocopter VC200, an 18-rotor drone-helicopter hybrid, announced its first production model, which seats 2. Its maximum range is 17 miles at 43 mph, and its maximum flight time is 27 mins at an optimal cruising speed of 31 mph. Flying taxi pilot projects will commence in 2018.

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Two cities announce flying taxi service plans for the 2030s (Drone/Flying Taxis - 2017-03 - Big Think)

Singapore and Dubai plan to use driverless drone taxis by the 2030s. Singapore is also planning an on-demand bus system to supplement its rail transit. Car ownership is deemed superfluous. 3 prototypes being considered are the Russian Hoversurf Scorpion, the German Volocopter VC200, and, the favorite, Chinese Ehang184.

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Airbus’s Silicon Valley lab, took an idea for a pilotless electric plane from concept to flight in just two years (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-03 - FastCompany)

Within five to 10 years, pilotless, electric-powered VTOL (Vertical Take-Off and Landing) flying taxis may whisk everyday commuters over congested megacities. Airbus’ Vahana competes with >12 companies. They take off like helicopters, then transform mid-air into planes that can fly farther, faster, and more quietly than traditional choppers. Once Vahana gets high enough, its wings tilt forward, parallel to the ground, for a quick commuter flight of up to 60 miles, then tilt back up for descent, all powered by lithium-ion batteries. FAA-certification is expected by 2022.

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Autonomous, VTOL, electric, flying taxi can travel at 150 kph for 100 km (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-03 - TechRepublic)

Kitty Hawk, an autonomous flying taxi company backed by Alphabet CEO Larry Page, unveiled its Cora commercial plane. The plane is completely autonomous, fully electric (quiet emission-free), and can travel at 150 kph for 100 km. It can take off and land vertically. The government of New Zealand is interested.

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Los Angeles has joined Dallas and Dubai as Uber's 2020 flying taxi test sites (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-11 - The Verge)

In addition to announcing the 3 cities as pilot sites for their flying taxis, Uber released videos showing what it will be like to use their UberAir service (with fees in the US$20 area). There are about 20 companies developing plans for flying taxis.

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Uber working with NASA to make flying taxis a reality by 2023 (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-11 - ZDNet)

Uber is working with NASA to develop an air traffic management system that could facilitate the launch of its flying car project ‘Uber Elevate’ and its flying taxi project ‘UberAir’. Uber is planning to have UberAir demonstrations by 2020 and to launch the service by 2023.

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Airbus’ electric flying taxis will launch in 2018 (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-10 - Futurism)

Airbus has successfully completed testing on its 4-propeller CityAirbus’ propulsion system, putting the VTOL on track for commercial operation in 2018. When its fully operational, it will be able to carry up to four people and maneuver around the city at 120km/hr. A pilot will be assigned initially.

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Uber to offer flying taxi service by 2020 (AI/Flying Taxis - 2017-04 - ZDNet)

Uber plans to team up with Aurora Flight Sciences to create and test out a network of aerial VTOL taxis for passengers to hire by 2020. The company’s so-called “flying cars” will cost as much as your average land fare. They will be part of the Uber Elevate Network, a system designed to give Uber users the opportunity to use both land and air to reach their destination.

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