It’s no secret that a good number of car manufacturers has been investing to autonomous technology research and development. As time continues to move forward, technology catches up, making changes—good or bad—inevitable. But, as far as automotive technology like driverless cars, how far are we really willing to go?
Just this year, half of 2018 to be exact, The Verge reports that Lyft and Aptiv, a giant ride-sharing company tied to a self-driving tech firm, claim that they have successfully accomplished 5,000 paid trips around Las Vegas since January of 2018. The two firms claim to be the only ones in the business to operate commercial robot taxis. This unmanned taxi scene will soon be joined by Waymo, who plans to launch a self-operating ride-hailing model in Arizona later this year.
Even with just 20 units in the robot taxi fleet, six months appear to have been more than enough for Lyft and Aptiv to cross out 5,000 paid trips off their checklist. These are all operated inside Las Vegas, according to tech magazine. People residing there are given options to either ride a regular car or a self-piloted one right upon opening the Lyft app. Catch this, both rides cost the same so, theoretically, it won’t really matter unless you’re after the experience.
You might be wondering if passengers can talk to the car. We get it; imagine if you’re traveling alone – if that’s what you’re thinking. The “robot” taxis never show up alone. Rather, they come with backup drivers that oversee the trip, ready to take over if necessary. However, The Verge said that the companies aren’t willing to disclose how many times humans have taken over the robot taxis since operations began.
What if one day, we wake up finding out that our labor isn’t needed anymore? The tables are slowly turning, don’t you think? Cars are becoming the ones to drive humans, not the other way around. Ugh, guess we’ve been into artificial intelligence movies a bit too much lately, so if you could excuse us for a moment...
Source: The Verge