Kitty Hawk, one of the startups of flying cars, supported by Google founder and Larry Page, has announced that it cooperates with Boeing to develop his semi-autonomous flying taxi. In particular, Kitty Hawk will work with Boeing on his two-seat Cora flying vehicle, which it hopes will one day use for a semi-autonomous flying taxi service.
Following a flood of announcements last year including the two-seater Cora, the single-seater Flyer, as well as one partnership with Air New Zealand, Kitty Hawk has been much calmer in recent months. The goal is that one day Cora offers a flying taxi service that is said to be available with an app. The plan is that the vehicle does not have a pilot on board; instead it will be flown mainly by autopilot systems, with the supervision of a remote human pilot. It sounds like the safe operation of this system could be an important part of the collaboration with Boeing since the company NeXt division focuses on ways in which autonomous and controlled vessels can safely share airspace.
Kitty Hawk has a number of high-profile competitors in the burgeoning flying taxi space. In particular, Uber plans to launch test flights from its own Uber Air service in 2020, with a commercial launch planned for 2023. The ride-sharing company announced it is working with five space companies to build vessels for service, including one company that was purchased by Boeing in 2017. A separate startup, Lilium, completed a test flight of its own five-seater aircraft earlier this year.