Watch the Volocopter air taxi make its debut urban flight
3:24

Watch the Volocopter air taxi make its debut urban flight

Science
[SOUND] 10 years ago, we all thought that by this time we'd be getting around by way of flying taxis. Okay maybe that was just me, but today we're a stop closer to a realistic solution for urban air travel. This week the vault copter air taxi completed its first flight in an urban setting. And if you're not familiar volocopter is an all electric 18 rotor unmanned flying vehicle. This happened in Germany in the city if Stuttgart as part of the Vision Smart city event. The flight only lasted a few minutes and the volocopter didn't actually go anywhere. It just hovered above a football field near the Mercedes-Benz museum But the people watching did get a sense of just how much noise these things would make if they were flying around the city. [SOUND] Volocopter is backed by Daimler, which Which, of course, owns Mercedes Benz. Now this wasn't the aircraft's first flight. We've seen plenty of demonstrations over the last couple years. Just a few weeks ago, it became the first vehicle of its type to take off from an international airport. That was in Helsinki, though it's worth pointing out, there was a pilot during that flight. The company wanted to show that its vehicle could be integrated into an airport's air traffic management system. But this latest demonstration, maybe a bigger deal for you and I. The goal was to show that the Volocopter can safely move around densely populated urban areas. Now again, it didn't really go anywhere. So Volocopter still has a lot to prove, but the company CEO did say he feels that they're quote, really close to bringing the technology to market. The company's plan is to build a network of transport hubs it calls "voloports" on tall buildings in cities around the world. Volocopter says a single point-to-point connection could transport up to 10,000 people a day. The first voloport is planned for Singapore, where the company hopes to kick off test flights by the end of the year. Of course [UNKNOWN] isn't the only dog in this race. Remember this? This is bells [UNKNOWN] concept that got all the attention at C E S this year. Bell is one of several companies that have partnered with Uber to launch an on demand air taxi service called Uber elevate. Now we haven't heard much on the [UNKNOWN] since C E S But Bell has said it wants to begin testing by 2023. Then of course there's Google founder Larry page's startup Kitty Hawk. They make these personal flying vehicles. Kitty Hawk announced a partnership with Boeing a few months ago to develop Cora, a semi autonomous flying taxi and the list goes on. And on, and on. In fact, the Vertical Flight Society just reported that there are now 200 vertical takeoff and landing vehicles in development. Okay, I've said this before. We're still a ways off. From flying over gridlock to get to work on time, particularly because as of right now, there's a lot of regulatory red tape declare, there's no clear answer as to how the FAA is going to regulate air taxis and what's going to be legal. But one thing is clear, with all the money and innovation that's being poured into this. They are coming. So what do you think? Which one of these companies will be the first to hit the market? Let us know in the comments. And to learn more about the bill Nexus, click here. That's going to do it for this week. I'm Andy Often. I'll see you in the future.

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