Latest in Gear

Image credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Waymo will battle Uber with its own self-driving trucks

Google calls it a "technical exploration" to improve safety.
320 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Sponsored Links

Getty Images/iStockphoto

Google was one of the first companies to show off self-driving car tech, but it's pretty late into the autonomous truck game. Well after companies like Daimler, Komatsu and Uber unveiled their own platforms, Waymo has started testing a single truck on public roads, it told Buzzfeed and Reuters. "Self-driving technology can transport people and things much more safely than we do today and reduce the thousands of trucking-related deaths each year," it said in a statement.

The work is preliminary at the moment, as Waymo referred to it as "a technical exploration into how our technology can integrate into a truck." Others, meanwhile, are into more advanced testing -- Daimler, Volvo and others participated in an advanced autonomous "platooning" convoy challenge, for instance.

However, it may be arch-rival Uber that most motivated Waymo. The two companies are locked in pitched court battle, with Waymo having sued Uber for allegedly stealing some of its self-driving ideas. Uber's tech comes via its purchase of Otto, a self-driving company founded by Anthony Levandowski, one of Google's key self-driving executives. Earlier this week Uber fired Levandowski, shortly after federal prosecutors recommended an investigation into the alleged IP theft.

Despite all the problems, however, Uber has a lead over Waymo in the self-driving truck game, having done a 200-mile beer run in Colorado with no driver intervention. It also arguably has a big head start in logistics, having already developed an extensive ride-sharing network for its Uber passenger service.

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
320 Shares
Share
Tweet
Share
Save

Popular on Engadget

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

The 2019 Engadget Holiday Gift Guide

View
Google Cloud Print follows Reader and Inbox to the trash heap after 2020

Google Cloud Print follows Reader and Inbox to the trash heap after 2020

View
Dell's Black Friday sale includes price cuts on the XPS 13 and Alienware m15

Dell's Black Friday sale includes price cuts on the XPS 13 and Alienware m15

View
GM’s first electric truck could be ready in 2021

GM’s first electric truck could be ready in 2021

View
Save up to $300 on Vizio soundbars with these early Black Friday deals

Save up to $300 on Vizio soundbars with these early Black Friday deals

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr