Around 4 pm yesterday, I headed into battle. I climbed into the tank sitting in my driveway (you might call it a car) and ventured out into the hellscape known as Los Angeles traffic. Over the next 90 minutes, I covered 23 miles, a journey marked by creeping gains in ground, honking altercations, and endless frustrations. My average speed was 15 mph, my arrival a pyrrhic victory. And there was nothing special about it.
Uber believes it has the solution, one that goes beyond summoning someone to do the driving. Instead of driving my tank or riding in someone else’s, I’d whip out my phone and pull up UberAIR in the company’s app. I’d head to the roof of the nearest tall building and hop into the gleaming white helicopter-drone hybrid thing waiting there to lift me up and over the traffic at 200 mph.
Yes, Uber wants to offer flying cars. It went public with this hope a bit more than a year ago, and since then the idea has only gotten more serious. It has made deals to run some kind of service in Dallas and Dubai.