What will the long-term impact of COVID-19 be on eVTOLs and UAM?
Short-term, it has clearly disrupted funding, flight testing and timelines; many companies tell me they have cancelled flight testing (though for drone delivery companies like Wing, business is booming).
But once the world is able to move forward, how will the pandemic impact this emerging industry?
Some believe by thrusting into the spotlight the potential benefit of drones and other unmanned systems, the pandemic will spur faster regulatory approval and airspace integration.
A survey earlier this month by Gartner found that 74 percent of CFOs intend to shift at some of their previously on-site workers to permanently remote work post-COVID 19.
How does that impact the need for air taxis? It’s unclear. On the one hand, fewer commuters could mean less congested roads, undermining the need for aerial transportation. Conversely, perhaps there is an opportunity for “mostly-remote” workers that can live farther outside city centers and visit the office once a week using an air taxi. Cause and effect are hard to predict.
Send me your thoughts on how the pandemic is currently affecting your operations and progress, or what you think the long-term impact of the virus will be on eVTOLs.
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