What is the Uber Air project?
I imagined the Uber Air mobile app experience, and the end-to-end process of commuting by air. Uber Air belongs to Elevate, a section of Uber that deals with aerial ride-sharing. I chose this project because I was excited by the prospect of designing a futuristic travel experience - one that could be revolutionary.
We waste up to 90 minutes in traffic everyday.
Uber Elevate aims to fix that problem, by providing a faster mode of commuting through “Air-taxis”. Currently Uber is testing aerial ride-sharing through Uber Copter, a helicopter service available in select locations where users are able to seamlessly book a 3 part journey and save up to 30 minutes.
So why not Uber Copter?
While helicopters get the job done, they are not the most efficient mode of air transport, because of the noise pollution, cost of maintenance and fuel usage. To tackle these issues, Uber Air was introduced, a similar concept that uses eVTOLS (Electric Vertical Take Off and Landing Vehicles) instead.
The Uber Air Framework
The entire journey would follow industry standard protocol of commercial air travel. According to Uber’s Whitepaper, the estimated one-way pricing will be expensive initially ($100+), but once long term economies of scale have been reached, this cost should go down to about $10 to $30.
The service will operate via a network of ‘Skyports’ distributed across major metropolitan cities, functioning as terminals for the eVTOLS. These Skyports are envisioned to be the tops of skyscrapers, parking garages or any repurposed land within dense areas of cities.
Defining my user groups -
I established my two user groups based on Uber's existing customer and the price-point of the service. Initially the user group is more niche and caters to a very specific group of individuals, whereas later on the lower price point allows it to be more accessible to a wider group of users.
Carrying out competitor research -
I researched all other modes of ride-share transportation from public transport to commercial airlines, and everything in between, to summarize their value propositions. I also looked at the various touch points throughout the journey and trade-offs for the user.