Regular flying drones might be annoying, unsafe, but what about a drone you can climb into and fly to the grocery store?
The appropriately named PassengerDrone company promises just that with its new two-seater manned aircraft. It flies without its passengers having to do anything beyond interact with a touchscreen. From the press release:
Slightly larger than a small car, the industry-leading PassengerDrone has the potential to change the traditional means of commuter transportation. Utilizing its easy-to-use touchscreen, passengers simply select their destination, sit back and relax, as the drone takes over, eliminating stressful commutes with the ability to travel up to 80 kph (50 mph).
And if you know your pitch from your yaw, there’s a manual mode too.
The craft uses 16 electric engines and is capable of vertical takeoff and landing. Another fun fact: its internals are entirely fiber optics, without a single wire inside. Because future.
Manned test flights took place in August, but that seems to be as far as the company has progressed. It did not yet respond to further inquiries on as target price, issues around regulations or an estimated release date.
PassengerDrone will have some competition: The EHang 184 drone taxi just began testing in Dubai and has been ; researchers at MIT are as “flying cars”; and companies like (a project of Google’s Larry Page) and are also investing in the technology.