nuTonomy is a self-driving startup company that is attempting to tackle urban driving using these specific vehicles. And just today, they’ve announced that they’ll be providing self-driving cab services in Singapore – not tomorrow; not next week; not next month; today!
“Beginning today, select Singapore residents will be invited to use nuTonomy’s ride-hailing smartphone app to book a no-cost ride in a nuTonomy self-driving car that employs the company’s sophisticated software, which has been integrated with high-performance sensing and computing components.”
Photo Credit: nuTonomy
Residents of Singapore will be able to hail one of nuTonomy’s vehicles through an app, just like Uber. They’ll have a choice between either a Renault Zoe or Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric vehicle. And like Uber’s own trial, passengers will be accompanied with an engineer to study the vehicle’s performance and to take the wheel just in case something were to go awry. To make it all the more appealing, booking a ride will be completely free. nuTonomy expects city-wide commercial applications by 2018.
As much love as I have for the United States and its technology sector, I can’t help but notice the Asian region’s dedication to the future of science and technology. Whether it’s China’s early dive into human gene-editing research, or Japan’s early embrace of robotics, or now Singapore’s early adoption of self-driving cab services, Asia is proving itself more than ready for the future. Which shouldn’t be seen as a jab at everyone else, including here in the U.S. This is good news for everybody, because it’s early adopters like China, Japan, and Singapore who will be the reason why everyone will be able to enjoy these technological marvels sooner rather than later.