On Thursday night, Elon Musk rolled out Tesla's biggest gizmo yet: a fully electric semitruck. The Semi can go a whopping 500 miles between charges, hauling 80,000 pounds along the way. The truck comes with Enhanced Autopilot, the second generation of Tesla's semiautonomous technology, equipped with automatic braking, lane keeping, and lane departure warnings.
Uber could soon eliminate the need for a smartphone as the only gateway into its service, with a whole new partnership. Uber has been using its self-driving trucks to transport goods in Arizona. SAN FRANCISCO -- Uber announced Tuesday that it has been sending self-driving trucks on delivery runs across Arizona since November, the first step in what could be a freight transportation revolution that could leave long-haul truckers in the cold. After testing its technology earlier in 2017, Uber began contracting with trucking companies to use its own autonomous Volvo big rigs to take over loads as they traverse the state. Uber did not disclose what items it is transporting for which companies.
Uber's autonomous trucks are finally hitting the road. The ride-hailing startup said on Tuesday that its self-driving big rigs have been ferrying cargo on highways in Arizona over the past few months. For each trip, human drivers work in tandem with the autonomous trucks. Humans pick up cargo from Uber Freight customers and drive it in trailers to transfer hubs. For each trip, human drivers work in tandem with the autonomous trucks.
Uber's autonomous trucks are making their first runs in Arizona. Waymo, the name of Google's self driving vehicle company, is now testing autonomous trucks in Atlanta. The latest installment, coming on the heels of a settled lawsuit between the two tech giants, involves self-driving truck testing. On Monday, Uber announced that it was hauling freight across Arizona in its self-driving trucks. On Friday, Waymo said it was starting to test self-driving trucks on highways and city streets around Atlanta.
With the likes of Daimler, Volvo, and Uber working on self-driving trucks, it's no surprise that the granddaddy of autonomous vehicles, Waymo, is getting in on the big-rig action too. Waymo (formerly the Google driverless car program, and now a standalone company under the Alphabet umbrella) is working to commercialize its technology, and today confirmed it's exploring how its self-driving know-how can transform the trucking industry. "Self-driving technology can transport people and things much more safely than we do today and reduce the thousands of trucking-related deaths each year," Waymo said in a statement. Truck crashes kill 4,000 people on US roads every year, and injure 116,000 more. There's a shortage of truck drivers now, which the American Trucking Associations predicts could worsen, leaving the industry short 175,000 drivers by 2024.