Google’s self-driving car technology is increasingly becoming autonomous, and the company has set aggressive research goals to achieve this goal. Although they have started by operating their cars on closed courses and pre-determined routes, the technology has gained autonomy and is now able to identify objects and people, as well as predict their movements. Google’s research team has been testing this technology for several years and has been able to demonstrate its abilities for self-driving cars.
While these self-driving cars have a bright future, there are some concerns. Experts doubt that the technology will eliminate driver error and reduce traffic accidents. Critics are also concerned that driverless cars will create an environment more dangerous than it already is. Google says that it has addressed the privacy concerns of car owners and will continue to build the technology to make it safer for everyone on the road. The company’s latest development has already raised significant privacy concerns.
Waymo has a huge head start over competitors in the autonomous car space. Its driverless cars have logged over 6 million miles on public roads, and another five billion in simulations. Waymo is working on partnerships with Fiat Chrysler, Jaguar Land Rover, and several other automakers to bring driverless cars to market. Waymo plans to launch a driverless commercial taxi service in Arizona later this year.
Google could target narrow, high-profile applications such as large trucks. In the United States, trucks accounted for 10% of road fatalities in 2009. Truck drivers have five times the risk of death due to work-related accidents than other US workers. Google could create a huge disruption in this space by launching a pilot in this area. It could even target one or two high-profile categories at a time, and focus on the highest-impact areas first.
Waymo also collects data on its surroundings, including pedestrians, cars, and objects. Using learning algorithms, it can tell the difference between stationary and moving objects. In one demonstration video, a self-driving car was able to detect pedestrians and make the appropriate decision. In addition, it can detect stationary objects without having to brake. A self-driving car is able to avoid hitting a pedestrian, which means that it will be safe to cross the street.
While Google’s self-driving car technology is in its early stages, the auto industry is adamant about keeping pace. Companies like Ford and Volkswagen have invested billions in this field. They are wary of the competition. Google’s success is resulting in an industry-wide rush to invest in autonomous car technology. However, the competition is not without its problems. Its success has spawned a plethora of startups, including Argo AI and Tesla.
Google’s self-driving car project began in 2009, but by that time, many other auto makers and suppliers were already developing similar technologies. Such technologies included adaptive cruise control, collision avoidance, and automatic parking. While some researchers argued that the technology was not yet ready for prime time, others claimed nothing went wrong. The company had spent billions of dollars developing the technology and is still testing it on public roads. But some researchers say it will take several years before it becomes an industry staple.