Google launches public self-driving taxi in Arizona
Google's self-driving car business, Waymo, has launched its robotaxi service in the United States.
However,... since the project is still in its early days,... it won't be available to everyone.
Only a few hundred people who live in the suburbs of one of Arizona's biggest cities will be able to make use of the service... at least for now.
Kim Hyo-sun tells us more.
Waymo, an arm of Google parent company Alphabet launched a public self-driving car service in Arizona on Wednesday.
The service, dubbed Waymo One, is similar to Uber, the popular ride-sharing service.
Riders download an application and provide their payment information.
The company which began developing driver-less vehicles in 2009,... aims to provide the service to a few hundred customers who live within a 160 kilometer zone near the Phoenix suburbs.
"I mean, the best thing for me was the first ride. Get in, sit down and watch the steering wheel turn on its own. Big grin on my face the entire time."
The vehicle is not entirely driver-less,... as a human engineer will be behind the wheel,... but only to intervene in case of emergency.
While major challenges remain, including technical hurdles,... many believe such services will be a game changer.
"There's no hindrance that I've noticed. They keep with the speed of traffic. They seem to know where they're going."
For the past decade, Waymo has logged more than 16 million kilometers on public roads in 25 cities across the U.S.
Wall Street analysts expect Waymo's market value to jump from 50 billion to 175 billion U.S. dollars once the self-driving service is stabilized.