S.Korea gets ready for air taxis with US-based startup

Seoul: South Korea’s top wireless carrier SK Telecom said on Monday it has partnered with US-based Joby Aviation in developing flying cars in a move to expand its foothold in urban air mobility (UAM) services.

SK Telecom said the two companies signed an agreement to form a regular consultative team to boost cooperation in introducing air taxis in South Korea and to create “Mobility as a Service” (MaaS), which connects cars, connected car platforms and business-to-customer services.

“Close cooperation with top global players is essential to becoming a leader in future industries, which is driven by UAM, self-driving vehicles and robots,” CEO Ryu Young-sang said in a statement.

The partnership is set to speed up South Korea’s long-term plan to commercialize UAM services by 2025 to help overcome urban traffic congestion by using unmanned drone taxis, reports Yonhap news agency.

SK Telecom has been ramping up the development of UAM services, collaborating with local firms and agencies to accelerate the development of UAM services and expand its services into other areas such as tourism and emergency response.

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