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Google reportedly shelves plans for its own self-driving car

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Written by Kamil Arli

Google is ditching its own plans for a self-driving car.

As reported by TechCrunch, which cited subscription service The Information, Google’s autonomous vehicle unit is opting for more partnerships—like the one it struck with Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) earlier this year.

THE COMPANIES IN MAY ANNOUNCED PLANS TO INTEGRATE SELF DRIVING SENSORS

 The companies in May announced plans to integrate self-driving sensors and software into 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans. Shared responsibilities are being carried out at a facility in Michigan, where the organizations will design and manufacture the FCA’s first autonomous minivan.

In December 2014, Google unveiled its first fully functional self-driving car—a Volkswagen Beetle-like number which ditches the typical steering wheel and conventional controls for a more roomy compartment.

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IN THE MONTHS SINCE, THE GOOGLE SELF DRIVING CAR PROJECT’S TEST FLEET HAS TRAVELED

In the months since, the Google Self-Driving Car Project’s test fleet has traveled more than 1.5 million autonomous miles on public roads. The vehicles are currently motoring around California, Texas, Washington, and Arizona; it is unclear whether they will be retired, or continue racking up real-world experience.

Google did not immediately respond to PCMag’s request for comment.

The Information, however, suggested the search giant isn’t giving up on its ambitions completely, and may introduce an autonomous taxi service sometime next year.

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STILL, THERE REMAINS ONE MAJOR HURDLE FOR AUTONOMOUS TECHNOLOGY

Still, there remains one major hurdle for autonomous technology: federal regulations—or lack thereof.

Google, with the help of other tech companies and vehicle manufacturers, is fighting for national self-driving car standards. And it seems to have the ear of the government.

Earlier this year, US Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx announced a nearly $4 billion, 10-year plan to “accelerate the development and adoption of sale vehicle automation through real-world pilot projects.”

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The investment is part of President Obama’s plan to build a “21st century transportation system.”

Source: Pcworld

About the author

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Kamil Arli

Editor of DigitalReview.co. Digital Media Consultant

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