Published: Sat, July 22, 2017
Markets | By Erika Turner

Lyft Accelerates Efforts to Develop Self-driving Cars

Lyft Accelerates Efforts to Develop Self-driving Cars

As Lyft's partners begin picking up passengers and accounting for a portion of the 100 million miles covered monthly by human Lyft drivers, the cars' sensors will be collecting information on their surroundings that will gradually contribute to a centralized repository of data controlled by Lyft, Vincent said. Lyft's new division marks a change in the company's strategy as it shifts from partnerships to its own advancement of self-driving auto technology.

The California-based company said it will hire hundreds of people by the end of this year, and lease 50,000 square feet for lab space and open testing space.

It's part of what Lyft calls its "Open Platform Initiative".

But Lyft's chief strategy officer Raj Kapoor said Thursday, per the Chron, "Drivers play an important role and will continue to play an important role".

The company's move to jump into the autonomous vehicle sphere is relatively late compared to the likes of Waymo, Uber, Tesla and others who have spent more time developing the technology, however Lyft says that it is not concerned by this.

"Lyft is uniquely positioned to build technology in collaboration with partners in a way that will make it possible to roll out self-driving cars at scale in the fastest, safest, most efficient way", Luc Vincent, Lyft's vice president of engineering, said, CNBC reported.

Former Florida DE Dante Fowler arrested for battery, mischief on Tuesday night
Both charges are considered misdemeanors and there's a chance Fowler could face disciplinary action from the NFL. Fowler missed his entire rookie season due to a torn ACL suffered in the first session of his rookie minicamp.

Former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick famously infuriated drivers by saying the company would save money once it no longer had to pay the "dude" in the driver's seat. It plans to outfit these vehicles with cameras and sensors to collect data that will ultimately train its self-driving cars.

In a press-only event in its San Francisco headquarters, Lyft executives said it remains committed to its partnerships while working on its own self-driving technology.

Until Friday's announcement, Lyft's public self-driving effort has focused on partnerships. In Lyft's ideal world, that could mean a quicker spread of Lyft's technology among automakers.

Lyft is betting the future of the road centers on sharing autonomous vehicles. But on Thursday, Lyft preached a hybrid system where human drivers will take over self-driving cars for locations and situations deemed too chaotic and hard for machines.

Uber's approach is closer to that of Apple: Both companies want to control most of the product, whether the software or the hardware. It visualizes a hybrid network of human-driven and self-driving cars, with the system selecting whichever is best for a passenger's requested route.

Like this: