How Uber floats the regulations in each country?
As known the company is known for flouting regulations as it built its disruptive, multi-billion-dollar business, rolled out a fleet of autonomous cars in San Francisco this week despite an explicit warning from the Department of Motor Vehicles that testing on public roads was illegal without a permit. However they managed to complete the test successfully without any damages to the public property as well as to private cars and people on roads. The dispute comes only because of the word ‘autonomous’ as it is quite complicated in the regulations and rules framed in each country. California defines autonomous vehicles as having technology capable of “operating or driving the vehicle without active physical control or monitoring of a natural person.” The California DMV believes Uber’s cars are equipped with technology that allows them to operate autonomously, regardless if someone is in the driver seat. But it doesn’t happen that way as there will be someone always accompanying those cars in the next seat who will be trained employees by the Uber Company.
Uber’s Mr. Levandowski likened its vehicles, retrofitted Volvo XC90s, to Tesla Motors Inc.’s “autopilot” feature, which can take over some steering functions from the driver when activated but shouldn’t be entirely relied upon. Tesla has introduced similar technology without getting any permit into their business though the nature of business varies between both. For that Mr. Levandowski argued that if Tesla’s technology doesn’t require the permit, nor should Uber’s. The DMV cease-and-desist letter said that under the California Vehicle Code, an autonomous vehicle must have a permit to ensure that “those testing the vehicle have provided an adequate level of financial responsibility, have adequately trained qualified test drivers on the safe operation of the autonomous technology; and will notify the DMV when the vehicles have been involved in a collision.”
Even if it is not listed under autonomous the permit issues only would be rectified. Apart from that the process and productivity issues would still persist which the company has to face every then and now and get it solved offline by avoiding taking it legally.
What does Car manufacturing companies have to say?
Few CEO of giant car manufacturing companies like Ford were making few statements about the innovative idea. When questioned on the challenges to be faced before Ford can roll self-driving cars out to the public, and they responded back in a very surprising manner. He said the company is interested neither in spending time to get the infrastructure ready nor on counting dedicated self-driving car lanes on freeways. Instead they are looking to invest in building a revolutionary self-driving car that’s capable enough to drive itself on roads with maniacs like us, which is as bold as it is awesome. He also added that it is going to be a lot harder to build an autonomous fleet that doesn’t (necessarily) use connected roadways or IoT innovations, but it’s also the most direct route to adoption. If the company is able to build something solid and durable, which is also able to integrate with driven vehicles, then definitely it is obvious that it would catch the attention of the mainstream and people and lead the market hence forth as they would be recognized as experts after reaching the remarkable achievement.
Speaking about the upcoming changes to infotainment systems in self-driving cars, a CEO stated that Ford isn’t singling out the dashboard. “When the driver becomes the rider,” he said, “you’re able to rethink the entire interior, infotainment included.” In other words, Mr. Suit may order a self-driving Ford with a “Business” interior, whereas a rave-happy teenager may pine for an interior that is more of partying type. Eventually the customer is able to order a car with a themed interior as easily as they can order different tires for off-roading, winter driving, or track use.
It is very much known that Ford’s history has been one of putting outstanding tech in the hands of many, not just a few, and its eventual fleet of autonomous cars shouldn’t be any different. And if it allows us to work, eat, relax, sleep and even party during the short trips then no people would be ready to ignore such kind of luxury and definitely decide to prefer this type of cars instead of the normal ones.
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