When will we see drones for human transportation?

1.8k views1 Upvote46 Comments

Head of Security and Compliance in Software, 51 - 200 employees
With the pandemic, people got so afraid of traveling by plane, and there’s a lot of innovation that's happening in individual flight systems. There are already small drones used for package delivery, but now that duty can be magnified for bigger drones that are capable of taking humans. It’s like a drone that has been transformed into a flying car. I have seen some news articles saying it's another thing that may indirectly impact all the delivery services we have today. Those delivery services will have trouble if they don’t innovate to own all these service drones.
3 Replies
CTO in Healthcare and Biotech, 11 - 50 employees

We have to separate fiction from reality because right now, I don't see how a flying car can take people from one point to another, even though there might be a solution at hand.

Head of Security and Compliance in Software, 51 - 200 employees

For short distances or commute needs, I think it could work. We have to wait and see if there will be maturity. There are always regulations and many other things that will play into it.

Assistant Director IT Auditor in Education, 10,001+ employees

It will happen, 10 years ago no one thinks driverless cars and trucks were possible.

CIO, 5,001 - 10,000 employees
There’s a company called Archer that’s working on drones for human transportation here in the Bay Area. It's not just hype; it's real and they're taking test flights. The question is: can we regulate so that the skies don't become so full of drones that we can't see the blue sky anymore? We don’t want to end up with so much air traffic that we're crashing into things and killing people on the ground. It's not that the technology can't be realized, it's whether we can mesh it into society so it fits the way we want to live. Those are the things that I think are long polls, even more than technology sometimes. How do you make technology work with people?
1 4 Replies
CEO in Services (non-Government), Self-employed

Does Archer test its devices in cold weather? When I see the large autonomous vehicles, like the Teslas, being tested, I wonder how it’s going to fit into my life because not everybody lives in Southern California. 

CIO, 5,001 - 10,000 employees

I don't know how far along they are, but I do think the devices are real. They're probably starting here in California where they can get it done. Of course, AI works great against the right trained dataset but when you present it with something that doesn't fit that dataset, the results can be disastrous or perhaps fatal. These are the things we'll have to go through to make these technologies commonplace, not in special segmented use cases, but to the point that everybody's using it. 

CEO in Services (non-Government), Self-employed

Traffic in Toronto is the most congested in North America, so I would rather jump in one of those drone planes to get downtown in 15 minutes than spend two and a half hours sitting in traffic to go the same distance. It's a huge time savings but I still wonder: How sustainable are they? Are they emission-free?

Director of Technology Strategy in Services (non-Government), 2 - 10 employees
I've thought about flying cars a couple of times from constraints. Where I live is very white collar and a lot of us work in Auckland’s central business district (CBD). Having flying cars to get through the choke point of the motorway would be wonderful. But the biggest constraint we’d have to deal with is the operational air force base in the middle of Auckland. New Zealand doesn't have any jet fighters, so you wouldn’t be at risk of getting shot down, but we still have to get past that.

The other point that made me think about this more is that I used to live in an area that is largely blue collar, so flying cars aren't going to be the same issue there. The one problem that I saw with flying cars in that setting was the overhead power lines on our two arterial roads. It restricts your ability to drive out of the garage and take off when you have to deal with 18th century technology like overhead power lines, which will break your car if you fly into them.
Director of IT in Transportation, 5,001 - 10,000 employees
ten years
Director Of Information Technology in Healthcare and Biotech, 1,001 - 5,000 employees
I think the with the advancement in technology that drone transportation will be available in the next 10 years.
Assistant Director IT Auditor in Education, 10,001+ employees
While drones may be in its infancy for human transportation, I believe it will not be too long, maybe in a few years we will see drones in use to transport people. The technology exist currently to transport goods but the government has to put some type of regulations in place for human use.
Chief Technology Officer in Finance (non-banking), 11 - 50 employees
When the power to weight to noise to survival ratio is a little bit better than it is right now!
CIO in Healthcare and Biotech, 51 - 200 employees
Drones for human transport exist today, though they are far from perfect, and basically just a concept model currently. The challenge will be how they can be used in the near future. Many jurisdictions are creating regulations around the use of drones for recreation and goods transport. Allowing human transport and insuring against risks and liability will still be a ways off for most.  I'd guess more than five years before we see them as a real consideration. 
CIO in Healthcare and Biotech, 201 - 500 employees
There is always a discussion that drones will save the congestion on the roads but in actual fact it will just move the the sky.
I do think that it will be some time until we have flying of drones for personal transportation as the skies are very highly regulated. Something will need to be created to regulate drone traffic. I can see that we may be able to use drones for driving closer to the road level sooner rather than much higher.
CIO in Energy and Utilities, 1,001 - 5,000 employees
Probably, in the next 10 to 15 years. There are already several prototypes being built in this area. We have packages that are delivered by drones. So, it will just be a few more years when they will start transporting humans. 

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