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Google Sister Waymo Rolls Out Self-Driving Taxi Service To The Public

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Google Sister Waymo Rolls Out Self-Driving Taxi Service To The Public

Alphabet Inc’s (NASDAQ: GOOGL) (NASDAQ: GOOG) self-driving unit Waymo said Thursday it is opening its driverless service to the general public.

What Happened: The driverless offering of Waymo would be available beginning Thursday — initially available to those part of Waymo One, the company's CEO John Krafcik said in a statement.

The robo-taxi service is available in Phoenix, Arizona and service will be expanded to all users of its app — which can be downloaded from Google Play or Apple Inc’s (NASDAQ: AAPL) App Store — in the coming weeks, said Krafcik.

Why It Matters: Waymo is expected to launch the service only with driverless cars in a larger 100 square mile area in Phoenix using Pacifica minivans made by partner Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV (NYSE: FCAU), reported Reuters.

Some vehicles will reportedly still have attendants on board.

This year, the Google self-driving unit announced two partnerships centered on self-driving, one which deepens the existing relationship with Fiat Chrysler, and another new one with Volvo Cars Group.

In June, Amazon.com, Inc (NASDAQ: AMZN) purchased rival firm Zoox for $1 billion. The Jeff Bezos-led company is offering $100 million in stock inducements to retain talent at Zoox post-acquisition. 

Uber Inc (NASDAQ: UBER) self-driving efforts were met with a setback after a collision left a pedestrian dead in 2018; the back-up driver for the vehicle was charged with negligent homicide last month, BBC reported.

Rival Lyft Inc. (NASDAQ: LYFT) resumed self-driving vehicle testing on public roads in California in July after remaining paused due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Price Action: Alphabet Class A shares closed 1.66% higher at $1,483.43 and Class C shares closed 1.76% higher at $1,485.93 on Thursday.

Photo by Dllu via Wikimedia

 

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