While the rest of the world is focusing on electric, autonomous, and flying cars, a French startup by the name of SeaBubbles is doing things very differently. To be more specific, the company raised US$10.8m in funding to start building a flying water car. In fact, their boats are almost production ready and they will show up at an upcoming technology conference next month.
Flying Water Cars Are The Next Hype
It has to be said, the concept of a “flying water car” sounds a more appealing compared to an electric car. Then again, it is impossible to drive SeaBubbles’ machine on the open road. It is good to see companies think outside of the box a bit, though, as buying a traditional boat can be quite expensive for the average consumer.
SeaBubbles have embarked on this bold and brave journey in 2016, as they look to revolutionize urban travel. To be more specific, the company unveiled a car-shaped river shuttle equipped with hydrofoils. This combination of technology allows the machine to rise above the surface of the waves. It is expected these machines will first roll out or regions where major waterways are in the near vicinity.
To be more specific, the flying water cars are capable of hovering inches above the water. In calm water, this should ensure a frictionless experience, although it remains to be seen how these machines behave when the wind picks up in speed. It is expected over a dozen vessels will hover over the Seine in the Summer of 2017. Quite an ambitious goal, although this new round of funding can certainly make it possible.
What is even more interesting is how the first real-world trials of the vessels will serve as a way to introduce this concept to the world. Moreover, the trial will also provide a hands-on approach to both investors and the media. Seeing it is believing, and that is especially true when dealing with a concept no one else would have dreamed of. In the long run, SeaBubbles hope to see the machines being used as on-demand ferry shuttles, which would be quite interesting to see.
Further plans for the company include an international expansion. SeaBubbles wants to bring their flying water cars to cities in Europe, Asia, the Middle East, and even the US by the end of 2018. The bigger question is whether or not they will run into regulatory problems, considering they are providing an on-demand water taxi service. Similar services focusing on car ride-sharing have seen quite a bit of resistance from regulators around the world already.
In the end, one cannot deny we live in a very exciting time right now. Technological innovation is reaching new peaks every quarter, and innovative concepts are slowly coming to market. It will be interesting to see what the rest of 2017 has in store for our society, but it will undoubtedly be something equally amazing.
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