Google’s self-driving is rebranding as Waymo

Google’s self-driving car unit is rebranding as Waymo, as it spins out of its experimental X lab to become a standalone unit inside the Alphabet  holding company… Waymo has ambitions to apply its self-driving technology to car-sharing, trucking, logistics and public transport, as well as personal-use vehicles built and sold in partnership with existing vehicle makers… The company hopes to tackle the huge “waste” in underutilised vehicles and time spent commuting, as well as reducing the 1.2 million fatalities on the world’s roads every year. Google completed its first fully driverless journey on a public road in Austin, Texas, in a vehicle without a steering wheel or pedals in October 2015… Google’s cars have now driven more than 2 million miles, transporting more than 10,000 people in Mountain View in Silicon Valley, Austin and Phoenix, Arizona. When the self-driving car project began eight years ago, Google was seen as an outlier, but now it is facing growing competition from both traditional carmakers and tech companies, including Uber and Apple.


Tim Bradshaw