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No longer invite-only, “robo-cars” offered to Singaporeans

Autonomous vehicle software startup nuTonomy has made rides on its self-driving taxis available to the general public in Singapore for free, expanding a first-in-the world run that was initially invitation-only.

By: | Singapore | Published: September 23, 2016 11:53 AM
A nuTonomy self-driving taxi drives on the road during its public trial in Singapore. (AP) A nuTonomy self-driving taxi drives on the road during its public trial in Singapore. (AP)

Autonomous vehicle software startup nuTonomy has made rides on its self-driving taxis available to the general public in Singapore for free, expanding a first-in-the world run that was initially invitation-only.

While multiple companies have long been testing self-driving cars on public roads, nuTonomy announced in August that it was the first to offer autonomous taxi rides. It beat Uber, which started offering rides in autonomous cars in Pittsburgh last week.

The Singapore trial was limited to a 2.5-square-mile (6.5-square-kilometer) business and residential district called ”one north.” NuTonomy CEO Karl Iagnemma said Friday that the government has since doubled the test area.

NuTonomy, a spinoff from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, announced Friday that the public can now book self-driving taxis through an app by Grab, Southeast Asia’s biggest ride-hailing company.

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