Waymo to Focus on Robo-Taxi Tech instead of Trucking

Waymo has decided to back away from trucking autonomous technology and focus most of its attention on future robo-taxi services.

This week it announced its refocus away from heavy duty trucking applications in favor or a more lucrative consumer offering, Reuters reports. It’s possible its decision was forced by the twin pressures of increased regulator scrutiny of autonomous technology claims and investor concerns over the lengthening timeframe for the tech to make it to a viable market.

The company said it is seeing growth and demand for ride-hailing services in San Francisco, Phoenix and Los Angeles and is focusing on achieving commercial success in the business.
However, it said it will continue its collaboration with strategic partner Daimler Truck North America to take its autonomous trucking platform forward for the automaker.

In a statement the company said: “Laser-focusing on ride-hailing today puts us, our partners, and our customers in a strong position to be successful in the future across all of the business lines we pursue over time. We continue to see a significant future commercial opportunity for our trucking solution alongside other commercial applications of the Waymo Driver.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_  and Threads

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