Lyft and Waymo Partner Up
As more consumers become more interested in self-driving taxis, two Silicon Valley players are partnering up to create a fleet that will change the world of public transportation forever. Here is some news from Frank's Auto Body Inc. about two cutting-edge transportation companies that are aligning themselves for a big push before the end of the year.
Waymo, the self-driving car unit that operates under Google’s parent company, recently inked a deal with Lyft, the highly successful ride-hailing start-up to work together to bring autonomous car technology into the mainstream through pilot projects and product development endeavors.
It just makes sense to a lot of experts who claim that Waymo holds today’s superior self-driving technology, and by collaborating with Lyft, it will accelerate both companies' shared vision of enhancing peoples' lives with the world’s finest form of public self-driving transportation, spokespeople from both companies said in a joint statement.
Carmakers and companies that manufacture components and computer systems, a wide range of major world-class players are hungry for a slice of the autonomous car market that many believe will eventually be a multi-billion dollar industry. To gain a strategic edge and beat their competitors, many of these players are starting partnerships and alliances.
The deal between Waymo and Lyft likely isn't making Uber happy, which has recently had to confront a lot of workplace and legal problems that have hamstrung their ability to pursue new projects, according to reports on Forbes.com.
Lyft is gaining in popularity, but they are still way behind Uber among ride-hailing services in the U.S. and the two companies allegedly aren't warm and fuzzy about each other.
Waymo is also in direct competition with Uber in the development of technology for self-driving cars and is entangled in a lawsuit over Uber’s use of stolen Waymo trade secrets to develop autonomous technology.
Lyft has reported many times that one of its missions is to match its network of passengers and drivers with partners within the transportation industry. In 2016, it signed a deal with General Motors, a major Lyft investor, to assist them with that goal. Under that particular alliance, the companies plan to test self-driving Chevrolet Bolt vehicles utilizing Lyft’s network with the general public within the next 2-3 years.
Waymo has pursued its own partnerships as well over the years. The company is working closely with Fiat Chrysler on a fleet of minivans and is currently in discussions with Honda about a potential deal that would put Waymo technology in Honda test cars. In addition, Waymo recently introduced a pilot program in Phoenix, AZ in which people can apply to hail a small fleet of self-driving Chrysler minivans and Lexuses for complimentary rides around town.
Both Waymo and Lyft are making definitive moves, but will we soon see self-driving taxis in Henderson and throughout NV? Let's wait and see if these types of partnerships will bring self-driving technology to the general public after nearly a decade of development.
Sources: Waymo, Lyft and Forbes