Widespread artificial intelligence, biohacking, new platforms and immersive experiences dominate this year’s Gartner Hype Cycle.
Waiting curbside for an Uber or Lyft driver might one day be the old-fashioned way of getting around. Instead, passengers will need to head to the helipad to catch a ride from a flying autonomous vehicle. Not only will these future taxis take to the sky to potentially reduce traffic, they’ll operate independently of a human pilot.
Realistically, the world (and the technology) aren’t quite ready for autonomous flying taxis. The first challenge will be mastering the autonomous technology, which is still at least five to 10 years away. According to a recent test by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, today’s autonomous vehicle makers Level 2 driver assistance are not capable of driving safely on their own. The production vehicle that can safely drive itself anywhere, anytime isn’t available at the local car dealer and won’t be for quite some time.
The concept of autonomous flying vehicles isn’t just for human passengers but can be applied to transport many other things such as medical supplies, packages, food delivery and more. Companies are actively investigating this technology as a way to deliver same-day packages or regularly send supplies to remote locations without a pilot. These are a real possibility in the next decade.
Fully autonomous flying vehicles are an easier problem to solve in some cases than autonomous vehicles on the ground because the airspace is highly controlled and there are fewer variables such as humans. However, while there will be unique regulatory and societal challenges (e.g., where would all the helipads go, and how do we prevent crashes?), flying autonomous vehicles are one of 17 new technologies to join the Gartner Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2018. The Gartner Hype Cycle focuses on technologies that will deliver a high degree of competitive advantage over the next decade.
SOURCE: Fintech Weekly