When a driverless Uber killed a pedestrian, the onset of autonomous vehicles seemed to stall. But Waymo is cautiously but confidently forging ahead
In the manicured grounds of a public library in Chandler, Arizona, Liisa Walimaa is waiting for a robot to take her to Macy’s.
For a year Walimaa has been a participant in a closely guarded experiment being run by Waymo, a division of Alphabet (née Google), in this suburb of Phoenix that could change the face of global transportation on a scale unseen since we ditched horses for cars.
A few years back, everyone thought this was science fiction. Now they’re like: ‘Oh, why isn’t this here yesterday?’
Waymo’s self-driving Chrysler Pacifica hybrid minivan traverses public roads in Chandler, Arizona. Photograph: Waymo
One of three screens displays the user interface inside a Waymo vehicle in Chandler, Arizona. Photograph: Caitlin O’Hara/Reuters
An Uber self-driving SUV that flipped on its side in a collision in Tempe, Arizona, in March 2017. Photograph: AP