Waymo’s driverless ride service moves to metro Phoenix toward autonomous future

Posted at 9:31 AM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 12:25:24-05

The roadways of metro Phoenix may not look much different 10 years from now, but how we travel them might.

We may have more vehicles without drivers behind the wheel, said Andrew Maynard, an associate dean at Arizona State University’s College of Global Futures. Artificial intelligence packed with more than a century's worth of driving knowledge — which takes human error out of the equation — will control vehicles on Arizona roads.

That future isn’t far away, said Maynard, adding that it wouldn’t surprise him if in a decade “we see fairly ubiquitous use of self-driving vehicles, certainly for deliveries, certainly for transportation of goods.”

And he imagines in that time frame, more people will use driverless taxis, such as those developed by Waymo, which began in 2009 as the Google Self-Driving Car Project. This fall, Waymo introduced a fully driverless ride-hailing service to the east side of metro Phoenix.

Read more from the Phoenix Business Journal.