MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA- Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG) The search giant has decided to enter the self-driving cars industry and sales market after conducting a slew of tests in California’s and Texa’s highways.
Speaking at the California Public Utilities Commission on Thursday, Sarah Hunter, head of policy for GoogleX, clarified that the company plans to make a few hundred of self-driving cars in order to actually build one from the ground up.
Talking to The Guardian, she has also confirmed Google’s intentions.
The said cars, can go as fast as 25mph and are equipped with sensors and 3D mapping technology which create a virtual map of the car’s current environment and obstacles.
It may imagine risky as a test, and the truth is that there have been eleven accidents reported that involve those cars. However, the firm insists that in all cases, it was a human nature mistake.
Moreover, Hunter shared a few extra details on the cars, including the “go” button, the “please slow down and stop” button and the “stop pretty quickly” button, which all allow the driver to maintain some control over the car and act as an extra set of eyes watching the road.
“We haven’t decided yet how we’re going to bring this to market. Right now, our engineers are trying to figure out [..] how to make a car genuinely drive itself. Once we figure that out, we’ll figure out how to bring it to market and in which way. Is it something that we manufacture at scale for sale to individuals? Or is it something that we own and operate as a service?”
The above statement points to the conclusion that it may take some time until you can actually get in a car and go to work while taking breakfast on the driver’s seat.
Furthermore, Google’s new appointment, John Krafcik, the president of online car sales firm TrueCar, who is now the CEO of the self-driving vehicle project, indicates that the company has plans for the potential of making its advent into the self-driving cars’ mass-market.
In addition to the above, Google has made it clear that it is not willing to be in charge of the manufacturing process, instead it will collaborate with respective experts which will be assigned with the particular task.
And as more and more details keep surfacing, a Google’s spokesman said during an interview at the Wall Street Journal:
“We’re feeling good about our progress, so now we’re investing in building out a team that can help us bring this technology to its full potential. John’s combination of technical expertise and auto-industry experience will be particularly valuable as we collaborate with many different partners to achieve our goal.”
So there is a lot to expect and it might take some time, but chances are it will be totally worth it.