Google drives into the taxi game; will it kill Uber?

By: | Published: January 19, 2017 2:24 PM

Global tech giant Google is planning to make its foray into self-driving taxis after working on autonomous car technology since 2009. This move will mean serious competition for other taxi-hailing services like Uber, Lyft and Ola.

google, uber, uber google, self driving, autonomous cars, self driving taxi, self driven cabs, autonomous taxi, autonomous cars, uber cars, google cars, autonomous car news, google autonomous car newsThe self-driving car project that Google started seven years ago has grown into a company called Waymo. (Reuters)

Global tech giant Google is planning to make its foray into self-driving taxis after working on autonomous car technology since 2009. This move will mean serious competition for other taxi-hailing services like Uber, Lyft and Ola. According to a patent application filed by Google, it appears that the company might be working on autonomous taxis which will find the passenger and places by itself. The patent was initially found by Patent Yogi, a blog. The application showcases a database system which can be used by autonomous cars to store information on maps, as well as locations for pick up and drop for commuters. According to the patent, there are quite a lot of obstacles for driverless cabs to stop for passengers, like areas where construction is going on, or emergency services and even high-speed zones.

To address the issue, the company describes in the patent that a centralised dispatching system will help in storing suggested places for safe pick ups and drop offs. As a matter of fact, even Uber uses this for its pooling feature. Google’s application says that the new technology will increase the ‘availability, safety, and usefulness of the services of autonomous vehicles.’ This is not the first time the company has filed a patent regarding self-driven cars. In 2016, it had applied for a patent where it provided a solution to minimise injuries when such cars hit a pedestrian.

Meanwhile, Google’s fleet of autonomous cars, called Waymo is still in its testing phase. But still, it recently announced the deployment of Chrysler Pacifica minivans. The Verge reported that Waymo and Chrysler might eventually roll out the ride-hailing services.

Also read | Samsung & Tesla tie-up to make self-driving cars: report

In the autonomous taxi section, even Uber has been trying to make inroads to, and so if Lyft in the US. While in the future, Uber and Google can turn out to be rivals, but currently, they have been collaborating on projects like Google Maps.

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