While their common rival-Uber reels under a spate of lawsuits, Alphabet's self-driving unit Waymo is teaming up with Lyft to bring self-driving cars to the general population via fleet services, reports New York Times.
Citing sources, the report said that the two companies would be working together on pilot projects and product development efforts, which may see some Lyft users getting to book a Waymo self-driving car in a limited test sometime down the road.
Waymo recently launched a self-driving technology public pilot in Arizona; however teaming up with Lyft will help it in expanding its services that are based on demand modelling, efficient routing etc. “Waymo holds today’s best self-driving technology, and collaborating with them will accelerate our shared vision of improving lives with the world’s best transportation,” Lyft told the Times in a statement.
Waymo positioning itself as technology partner
Though, Waymo is experimenting with its own ride-hailing app — which the company is using in its first pilot program in Arizona, looks like it is more keen on positioning itself as the technology partner and essential service provider rather than a cab-aggregator itself. With its years of development work and actual driving experience with autonomous car tech, could be that Waymo beats everyone in commercialising its tech before anyone else.
Besides Waymo, Lyft also has a partnership with GM, which last year acquired self-driving startup Cruise.