Uber hopes Waymo self-driving cars will join its network

Brittany A. Roston - May 31, 2018, 3:38 pm CDT
Uber hopes Waymo self-driving cars will join its network

Uber, the ridesharing company that is working on the development of its own self-driving vehicles, hopes to get Alphabet’s Waymo onboard. Company CEO Dara Khosrowshahi revealed the ambition during Code Conference, explaining that the relationship between the two companies — which recently settled a major lawsuit — is warming up.

Back in early February, the Uber vs. Waymo lawsuit reached an end in the form of a settlement. In it, Waymo had alleged that Uber had acquired some of its autonomous tech secrets. Earlier this year, when announcing the settlement, Uber’s new CEO called Alphabet a partner and said he regretted that the lawsuit even existed.

Khosrowshahi envisions a future in which Waymo’s self-driving vehicles are made available on the Uber platform. Though the ridesharing company currently depends on human drivers to populate its platform, it’s no secret that its ultimate goal are cars that drive themselves.

The company was working hard on that goal until earlier this year when a tragic accident involving one of its autonomous vehicles resulted in the death of a pedestrian. Uber immediately stopped its self-driving tests, though they may resume later on this year. Other companies continue developing their own competing technologies, Alphabet’s Waymo among them.

Uber’s CEO said the relationship between the two companies is “getting better,” going on to explain that building such relationships is a slow process.

“I have a long relationship with Google and we have a trust level,” Khosrowshahi explained during the conference. He indicated that Waymo’s autonomous technology would be welcome on the Uber network, saying that he believes it would be a good things. However, “It’s up to them whether they want to do it or not,” he said.

SOURCE: Recode

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