Bloomberg has an in-depth feature looking at the world of Uber as it grows into Latin America. It’s an interesting look at what it takes to grow a US company into a very different market, albeit a look based entirely on the testimony of Uber mangers.

But apart from the business interest, it also features one very scary photograph: Uber drones holding placards over a highway in Mexico City as an advert for the multi-billion-dollar ridesharing future. Welcome to your future, techies.

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As the article points out, a lot of Uber’s crazy-high valuation rides on its ability to be the number-one ridesharing company worldwide, not just in the US. With Uber out of China, that makes conquering Latin American a big deal. Apparently, a big enough deal to use drones for advertising.

Apart from the Bloomberg image of the drone billboards — which, to be honest, I had to look at a few times to check it wasn’t a viral stunt for a dystopian sci-fi thriller — there seems to be very little written about Uber’s drone advertising. It’s unclear if this is just a one-off stunt, or an ongoing advertising campaign. Either way, it’s kinda scary — fleets of drones flying through the sky — and just a little invasive.

Most sci-fi thrillers that depict a world overrun by advertising seem to go for personalized billboards, or an augmented reality where everything is branded. those technologies are a long way off, but Uber’s march towards world domination doesn’t seem to want to wait.

Uber did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

 

Chris Mills has loved tinkering with technology ever since he worked out how to defeat the parental controls on his parents' internet. He's blogged his way through Apple events and SpaceX launches ever since, and still keeps a bizarre fondness for the Palm Pre.