In Beijing, the Chinese capital, tech giants Baidu and Pony.ai have started commercially testing more than 100 autonomous vehicles for the first time.
The usage areas of autonomous vehicles are expanding day by day. In Beijing, the capital of China, technology giant Baidu and Pony.ai began commercially testing more than 100 autonomous vehicles, called L4s, for the first time. More than 100 autonomous vehicles have been put into service as taxis in an economic development zone established on a total area of 60 square kilometers in the capital. It was stated that while a personnel is still needed to ensure safety in the vehicles, passengers are informed about the price standards and payment method before boarding the vehicle.
Wang Shengnan, Baidu's manager of autonomous commercial vehicles operations, said in a statement, "We are pleased to see that the number of autopilot vehicle users has increased since the start of commercial operation on November 25. During the commercial trial period, more and more people learned about the autonomous service. The feedback is quite good and the rate of those who approve the service is over 94 percent," he said.
Wang said, "The charge for the autonomous driving service is mainly for the purpose of validating the designed scenarios, improving our technology and optimizing the customers' experience. That's why we have not set any quantitative targets for the commercial operation at the moment. After receiving the users' feedback and advice, we We will strive to further optimize our operational process and product design so that the service can be used more easily and frequently in the future.”
Ouyang Rihui, Deputy Dean of the China Internet Economics Research Center, said: "The ability to commercialize autonomous driving on a large scale depends on technology and we still need to work on independent innovations. Autonomous driving also includes vehicle-road coordination or infrastructure-related issues. Moreover, "It can also depend on consumers' perspectives on the industry. It takes some time for consumers to accept new technology, especially those associated with their personal safety."