Traffic congestion has become worse over the past decade. With more and more crowded population especially in metropolitan areas, it can be hard to get anywhere on time.
Public transportation, while easily accessible, becomes all the more crowded – especially during weekdays. An option is to have your own private car, but also not only is it expensive (both to purchase, maintain, and refuel), the roads also prevent you from traveling quickly. Traffic congestion can be a pain – deadlocked cars honking horns while the hot sun burns above you. You get nowhere while your patience thins, and frustration thickens.
Rise of the Ride Sharing Apps
Another option that has sprung up in the recent years is ride sharing and ride-hailing companies like Uber. Here, people no longer have to wait for public rides like taxis and buses to get anywhere. People looking for extra cash to spend can drive other people around. This makes it a win-win for everyone involved. All it takes is a press of a button on a mobile app, and you are all set. But of course, these ride sharing schemes have their downsides as well.
On one hand, there have been reports of corrupt drivers in these apps that charge more than what is set. Others often involve privacy concerns, as sharing rides with strangers can sometimes be both dangerous and frustrating. While the price of these rides can get a lot higher than the fare for a bus or taxi, you get the convenience of getting directly at your destination. However, is the convenience of the travel really worth the price?
Taxi Drones: the Future or Destined for Failure?
The solution to this road problem comes from the future – or the near future to be exact. Taxi drones can give people access to the skies, away from the traffic of the world below. These single person transports do not require a driver, and can autonomously fly someone to their destinations. These taxis of the sky can take you to places faster, safer, and in a more private manner. You do not have to share the ride with anyone! In fact, you do not even have a driver present. All is done in a programmed control panel, where you input the destination and away you go. You do not even have to know how to drive one, as everything happens under the program’s watch.
Pretty futuristic, eh? Well, that may be why we will not see them any time soon – if at all in the coming decade. Flying drones, while sounding awesome, can be very impractical. A small, flying drone can already cause troubles against aircrafts and airports. In fact, an air collision between a drone and a plane is a main fear that may persist. Drone owners can sometimes get careless with their flying. Getting in the way of a plane (low on fuel as well) can cause damage – or in extreme cases, even total crashes. This endangers the lives of the people – both inside the plane and the ones in the area.
A Matter of Perspective
Can you imagine multiple drones flying all at once, in different directions and at multiple speeds? That would be incredibly chaotic, and not to mention increasing the risk of collision infinitely. Now imagine these drones being the size of cars and the chaos truly starts to sink in. If these taxi drones were meant to replace – fully replace – public transportation like taxis and buses, they have to be mass-produced. Not only is that not a viable option as it can clutter the skies, it is also a very expensive endeavor to take. One taxi drone can reach millions to create. Not to mention the drone’s fuel and maintenance costs. How much do you think a ride on that will be worth?
Therefore, for now, taxi drones are not the future. There are far too many complications and obstacles drone rides face before they become the face of transportation. What happens next? I guess we will simply have to wait and see, while partaking in public transports and ride sharing cars to get to our destinations. Maybe someday we can fly to our destinations. But for now, we have to remain with our present technology.