Uber's Autonomous Vehicles Begin Driving in San Francisco

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Not too long ago, Uber began picking up passengers in a fleet of autonomous Ford Focus' in Pittsburgh. The choice to use Pittsburgh for this was a bit of an interesting one, since Uber's headquarters is in San Francisco, but that is where their Advanced Technologies Center is located. And now, they are beginning to pick up passengers in self-driving cars in San Francisco as well. However, they do not have the approval of California's Department of Motor Vehicles.

Uber doesn't have the DMV's permission, but they have shared with the DMV that they don't think their vehicles are "autonomous". Uber doesn't believe that their cars are autonomous seeing as they will always have two humans in the vehicle. One which will be ready to grab the wheel in case the car runs into some danger. And another to watch out for pedestrians and also record any incidents that may occur. These are important roles, actually, as they will help Uber (and the industry) get better with self-driving cars.

Uber will be having self-driving Volvos on the streets of San Francisco picking up passengers. But as of right now, Uber isn't saying much about these vehicles. They won't say how many are going to be on the road, and there's no way to specifically hail a self-driving Volvo from the Uber app. The company says that passengers will be chosen at random. Uber has been having these Volvos roaming the streets of San Francisco for quite some time now, so they aren't new to the whole self-driving thing. They definitely aren't ready for primetime, as a driver had to grab the wheel quite a few times during a 30 minute ride. Mostly because he was being cautious, which is definitely a good thing when it comes to self-driving cars.

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Currently, there's no word on when Uber is planning to bring these self-driving cars to other cities. Right now they are available in Pittsburgh and San Francisco, and they are supposedly testing more in the Detroit area (as are most other companies right now). But Uber does believe that the future is self-driving cars, so they will definitely be working hard on these vehicles in the coming months and years.

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Alex has written for Androidheadlines since 2012 as Editor of the site and traveled the World to many of the biggest Smartphone and Technology events. Alex has a background in Technology and IT and Deep Passion for Everything Android and Google. His specialties lay in Smartphones of all budgets, Accessories, Home Automation and more. Contact him at [email protected]

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