These are the autonomous trucks that Google’s Waymo is testing
Alphabet/Google’s self-driving car division Waymo disclosed earlier this month that it is working on (semi-)autonomous trucks, and now we have our first look at the vehicles in question.
Jalopnik published a number of photos of a Waymo branded truck kitted out with a radar, lidar and ultrasonic radars.
Waymo is, of course, not alone in exploring autonomous trucking.
The company took Uber to court over its employment of former Google self-driving car executive Antony Levandowski, who it alleged harbored company secrets that were used to start Otto, the self-driving truck startup that Uber acquired last year.
Levandowski, who has since been fired by Uber, founded Otto alongside a number of former Googlers in 2016.
Like Waymo, Otto’s focus is not to replace truck drivers altogether, but rather to automate much of their driving in the name of increased safety and efficiency. So that might mean that a truck drives itself on long stretches of highway, allowing the human driver to get to the final destination faster, focus on other things during the journey, and maybe even take a rest.
Images via Jalopnik