Robotaxis from Waymo are currently transporting passengers to the Phoenix airport

Robotaxis from Waymo are currently transporting passengers to the Phoenix airport

According to the Alphabet corporation, it is the first AV operator to undertake ride-hail journeys to an airport, heralding the beginning of a potentially fruitful economic possibility.

Phoenix’s chaotic airport pickups and drop-offs can be handled by Waymo. According to the Alphabet firm, it is the first autonomous vehicle company whose service region includes a crowded major airport. Previously, the corporation exclusively provided airport transportation for its staff while safety drivers were behind the wheel. 

Waymo sees a potential revenue stream in extending its service region to include Phoenix’s Sky Harbor International Airport, noting that approximately 20% of manually operated ride-hail trips are made to airports. As the industry contracts, IT stocks fall, and the outlook for the economy darkens, AV companies are under tremendous pressure to start making money.

Since the beginning of 2017, Waymo has started using its vehicles in several Phoenix-area suburbs, including Chandler, Mesa, Tempe, and Gilbert. Additionally, it operates Waymo One, a for-profit ride-hailing service that combines vehicles with and without safety drivers. Earlier this year, the business increased its service area to encompass downtown Phoenix. 

A rebranded version of the Early Rider program that the firm ran in suburban Phoenix, the Trusted Tester program was introduced by the corporation last year. Customers who are interested in using Waymo’s robotaxis sign nondisclosure agreements and obtain access to the company’s early technologies and new service locations after joining a waitlist and being approved.

After some time, the business lets ordinary paying clients use those vehicles and service locations without being restricted from discussing their excursions by NDAs. Although a spokesman wouldn’t specify when some of those trips will be made in Waymo’s completely autonomous “rider only” vehicles. 

Before putting its Level 4 autonomous vehicles into the mix, Waymo will undoubtedly have work to do because airport visits can be notoriously chaotic for human-operated vehicles. Waymo might start making a lot of money for Alphabet as airport traffic progressively rises in the wake of the covid epidemic, or it could make for bad news if its vehicles become confused and cause traffic problems.

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