Autonomous cars are coming, and coming sooner than some may think. Uber already has some on public roads in Pittsburgh, not to mention General Motors and Ford are rigorously testing their own models near their world headquarters in metro Detroit. But the real question is where will autonomous cars be more useful? Would that be in the suburbs or in the cities like Chicago, New York City, Dallas and others? The answer is the suburbs.
Think about it for a minute. Those that live in the city, especially larger cities like Chicago and New York City, have plenty of ways to get around the city. Like the subway, bus, taxi's, and other modes of transportation. With everything being in close proximity of each other, many people are able to walk to everywhere that they need to be, or take a short subway ride to their destination. But when it comes to the suburbs, it's a much different thing. With everything being much more spread out than they would be in the city, those that live in the suburbs are confined to owning a car. Since public transportation isn't much of a thing in the suburbs, at least most suburbs.
On top of that, autonomous cars that are in the city will need to deal with traffic jams. While this is something they should already be aware of, it's a whole other story when it comes to navigating through the crowded streets of Manhattan. In the suburbs, there typically isn't a whole lot of traffic, which makes things easier for these autonomous cars. Auto makers need to look at bringing these autonomous vehicles on over to the suburbs, that's where the true market for self-driving cars will really exist. Users being able to just hail a car with an app on their phone, and it appear in seconds is a great thing. But currently, even with Uber and Lyft, it sometimes takes up to 20 minutes or more for the car to arrive. That's due to how many are available in the suburbs versus the cities.
There are already some semi-autonomous cars on the road like Tesla's models in the Model S, Model 3 and others, but also the Audi Q7 and most of the rest of Audi's fleet. Although they are not fully-autonomous. That is definitely the next logical step though.