Uber solves "Volvo driver" problem with new autonomous tech

Daniel Fowler
June 15, 2019

The Volvo XC90 presented today is the first production vehicle that, in combination with Uber's self-driving system, is allegedly capable of fully driving itself.

To be fair, Volvo is well-known for its commitment to safety, and the self-driving XC90 SUV it has developed in collaboration with Uber is its first production vehicle to roll off the factory floor with autonomous technology ready to go. It is even possible to stop the vehicle completely.

Uber said the drone service will provide data that will help manage its air network, and eventually allow the aircraft to operate autonomously. After the fatal accident, Uber immediately suspended testing of self-driving vehicles in Arizona and decided not to renew its permit for autonomous vehicle testing in California when it expired at the end of March 2018.

Food delivery staff working in Japan for ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc. said Wednesday they plan to form a labor union in a bid to improve what they see as disadvantageous treatment for being classified as independent contractors rather than employees.

"Volvo has always been known for their commitment to safety, which is the cornerstone of their newest production-ready self-driving base vehicle".

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Volvo plans to use a similar autonomous base vehicle concept for their autonomous cars which are expected to be launched in the early 2020s.

It has been kitted with the safety features necessary for Uber's self-driving systems to work effectively.

Volvo Cars chief executive Hakan Samuelsson added that by the middle of next decade, around one-third of all new Volvos sold will be fully autonomous.

The Swedish maker claims Uber's system may be able to safely and legally operate without a "mission specialist" - Uber's name for a trained employee now needed to operate and oversee the firm's autonomous development cars. "When paired with our self-driving technology, this vehicle will be a key ingredient in Uber's autonomous product suite". These technologies will be present on the next generation of Volvo models based on the SPA2 vehicle architecture, which will allow for unsupervised autonomous drive in clearly designated areas.

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