Speed Reads

The future is now

Robot-driven flying taxis will soon take passengers to Dubai's airport

This week, Dubai said that by July it plans to have a new airport shuttle system up and running that combines driverless taxis, quadcopter drones, and the flying cars that have been a staple of science fiction since the mid-20th century. The Ehang 184 passenger drones, made in China, will be able to transport one passenger and a small suitcase over Dubai's congested streets with the push of a button, Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority promises. And the drones have already been tested around Dubai, authority director general Mattar Al Tayer tells The New York Times. This "is not just a model but it has really flown in Dubai skies," he said. You can see the drones in action in this slick video from the transport authority:

Dubai is making a big push to adopt driverless technology, with its ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, committing the emirate to a quarter of all journeys conducted by driverless vehicles by 2030. The eight-copter Ehang drones can travel up to 100 miles per hour, but Dubai said they will normally travel no more than 62 miles an hour, the Times reports, and if something goes wrong, they'll land as soon as is safe.