Uber CEO sees commercialisation of flying taxis in 5-10 years

Feb 20, 2018, 18:27
Uber CEO sees commercialisation of flying taxis in 5-10 years

Khosrowshahi's enthusiasm echoes comments from Uber's Asia head Brooks Entwistle, who told Bloomberg this year that Japan will be a major focus for the company in 2018. JapanTaxi says 60,000 cabs, or around one-fourth of cabs in Japan, are enlisted on its administration, which it claims gives it the greatest marketshare among Japanese taxi-dispatch applications.

Uber early past year hired Mark Moore, a former engineer at NASA, to lead its exploration of flying vehicle technology, showing how serious it appears to be about the for now nascent technological prospect.

Tough rules legislate ride-hailing apps in Japan.

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Sony said it was planning a joint venture to offer artificial intelligence technology to six taxi operators, which now own a total of 10,000 vehicles in Tokyo.

Sony's ride-hailing service will be based on its artificial intelligence (AI) technology, the company said in a press release. While Khosrowshahi didn't announce any specific deals, he made clear that Uber would make a renewed push to expand in Japan.

The U.S. ride-hailing company has faced bans, restrictions and protests around the world as it disrupts conventional taxi services.

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Daiwa Motor Transportation and the other five taxy companies own a fleet of 10,000 cars which serve Tokyo residents. However, has not did not stopped Uber itself from attempting to enter market.

Uber wrote in the blog post that, "The current Morocco regulatory uncertainty does not allow us to provide a safe and reliable experience that meets the requirements of our customers, both drivers and passengers". That's a turnaround from previous boss Travis Kalanick who largely left the country in the hands of a country manager.

Sony's announcement adds another player to the already fiercely competitive Japanese taxi app market. Earlier this month, Japanese conglomerate SoftBank and Chinese ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing announced plans to set up a venture in the country. "If you're going to do business with SoftBank, you have to get used to that they do business with your competition", he said.

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