Uber has revealed more details of its flying taxi, which will launch in Dallas, Texas and Los Angeles, California by 2020.
The booking process was shown on a video released by the firm, demonstrating the taxi’s seating for four, propulsion system and ground speed close to 200mph.
After booking a seat in an UberAir vehicle, users head to an 'Uber Skyport', a mini airport-type boarding location for multiple UberAir vehicles, situated atop the roof of local building. Instead of being door-to-door transport for one, users share the vehicle, and are dropped off at a mutually convenient location, and use one of Uber’s planned driverless taxis to reach their final destination.
Uber will also launch flying taxis in Dubai by 2020, the company's chief product officer Jeff Holden announced at the Uber Elevate Summit.
Using small electric VTOL (Vertical Take-off and Landing) aircraft, Uber will charge passengers $1.32 per mile (about £1.03 at current rates).
This price is slightly higher than the cost of booking an UberX cab. The firm says that the cost will reduce over time so much so that'll it'll one day be cheaper to use Uber's flying taxi service than to run a car.
Uber described its plans as enabling “rapid reliable transport between suburbs and cities, and ultimately, within cities”. Daily long-distance commutes in heavily congested urban areas not served by existing infrastructure would likely to be the first to use the aircraft.
More than a dozen companies are working on the project, including vehicle charging station maker Chargepoint, which will develop an exclusive charger for the network of Uber aircraft.