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Waymo launches commercial self-driving taxi service in Phoenix

By Shawn Knight
Dec 5, 2018
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  1. Waymo, the transportation company that got its start as Google’s self-driving car project nearly a decade ago, is taking the next step in its journey with the launch of a commercial self-driving taxi service.

    Waymo One is initially rolling out to a small group of “Early Riders” in four Phoenix suburbs. Its self-driving vehicles, modified Chrysler Pacifica minivans, will arrive at pick-up locations with a safety driver behind the wheel. Eventually, safety drivers will be dismissed, but Waymo is taking a cautious approach out of the gate in the wake of a fatal collision involving an Uber self-driving vehicle in March.

    The company’s self-driving taxis can accommodate up to three adults and a child, we’re told.

    Andrew J. Hawkins with The Verge recently went for a spin (or three) in Waymo’s self-driving vehicle. He described the rides as “uneventful” and “mostly normal.” The Waymo taxi accelerated for lane changes, slowed down for speed bumps and pulled off difficult maneuvers such as unprotected left turns. When the vehicle braked too far into a crosswalk at an intersection, it backed up a few inches to make room for pedestrians.

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  2. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 4,448   +2,902

    I keep seeing these reviews but nobody ever talks about the cost for a ride in these vehicles as compared to a regular taxi ......
     
  3. xxLCxx

    xxLCxx TS Enthusiast Posts: 47   +38

    It's barely a shuttle service. I hate it, when the advertising department is dictating words. We got the 'autopilot' from Tesla, which is not an autopilot. Now we'll have to add the taxi, which just isn't a taxi...
    They will likely be undercutting the competition in this test scenario.
     
  4. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 4,448   +2,902

    Soooooo ..... if it is a shuttle service and it's not free, what does it cost to ride or is it free during the testing phase ... if it is even carrying passengers? You know, these companies have already done their cost/benefit calculations yet they still don't even give us a clue. Are they hiding something or are they afraid of the completion or some other reason????
     

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