Alphabet’s Waymo scores a massive win in California
Alphabet, the company formerly known as (and now parent company to) Google, has scored a massive win in California. Waymo, Alphabet’s driverless car business, has been awarded the state’s first permit to test driverless vehicles on the roads! This is a big step forward: while Waymo’s vehicles have been driving in sparsely populated mountain terrain for some time, it will mark their first foray into busy Californian streets.
Alphabet’s share price has declined by almost 2% over the last five days as investor sentiment has wobbled
Source: Yahoo Finance
Jean Shiomoto, director of California’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), said: “California has been working toward this milestone for several years, and we will continue to keep the public’s safety in mind as this technology evolves.” The DMV has awarded 60 permits to companies to test driverless vehicles in the state, but Waymo is the first to field them without a safety driver behind the wheel on public roads.
In a blog post, Alphabet execs chose to put the public’s mind at ease, writing:
“If a Waymo vehicle comes across a situation it doesn’t understand, it does what any good driver would do: comes to a safe stop until it does understand how to proceed. For our cars, that means following well-established protocols, which include contacting Waymo fleet and rider support for help in resolving the issue.
Safety is at the core of Waymo’s mission. Our vehicles undergo rigorous testing that begins well before they get to the road. Besides those 10 million miles on public roads, our self-driving system has learned from driving nearly 7 billion simulated miles.”
Waymo will field a fleet of roughly three dozen vehicles around its own stomping ground, including parts of Mountain View, Sunnyvale, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, and Palo Alto.
Dominion holds Alphabet in its Global Trends Managed Fund.
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