Perennial Runner-Up Lyft Joins Race to Develop Self-Driving Cars

Lyft driver car

Although Lyft has left much of the vehicle development to its partners, it will still build sensor packages and other hardware on a limited basis.

Lyft is embarking on this in-house solution years behind Uber, Waymo, and many others. While Uber's self-driving plans have mostly been a solo effort, Lyft has announced what it calls its Open Platform Initiative, a way to develop autonomous vehicle technology in conjunction with automakers and technology companies.

As Uber implodes spectacularly, ride-hailing company Lyft is again following its biggest competitor's footsteps, this time diving headfirst into a massive autonomous auto project that could someday send its human drivers off to some other corner of the godforsaken sharing economy.

"We want to take a proactive role into pushing the industry into a more open environment", Raj Kapoor, Lyft's chief strategy officer said at a media event Thursday. As the Chronicle elaborates, they'll instead be opening up their network and sharing data with partners that include Waymo, as well as Lyft investor General Motors, Jaguar Land Rover, and self-driving startup NuTonomy out of Cambridge, Massachusetts. Carmakers are inching towards building cars that really do drive themselves.

Unlike Uber and Google's Waymo, Lyft won't be attempting to build its own autonomous cars.

California town evacuated as wildfire spreads
Mariposa's 2,000 residents were told to leave town on Tuesday after its power and water links were damaged. Less than 12 hours prior, Cal Fire was reporting the blaze was at 25,000 acres and 5 percent contained.

Gardner worries about confidence in U.S. elections
They've done a poor job of it, and it's clear that more interstate coordination is needed. Today marks the first meeting of President Trump's Election Integrity Commission.

Malaysia's CPI slows to 3.6% in June
The consumer prices index fell to 2.6% from a four-year high of 2.9% in May according to the Office for National Statistics . Last month three of the Monetary Policy Committee's eight members voted in favour of a rate rise amid inflation concerns.

In a blog post, Lyft's VP of Engineering, Luc Vincent, an ex-Googler who founded that company's Street View team, said Lyft is developing an "open self-driving system".

Building autonomous driving systems is a complicated and expensive endeavor, and brings a new layer of complexity to Lyft. Now, Lyft's own self-driving cars will operate on that network too.

By contrast, Lyft has taken pains to say that its human drivers aren't going away. It plans to outfit these vehicles with cameras and sensors to collect data that will ultimately train its self-driving cars.

TechCrunch notes that Lyft's strategy may help it more smoothly navigate the rough regulatory waters that are facing autonomous vehicles in the years ahead.

For those not yet trusting of a robot driver (or are simply on a route inaccessible to an autonomous car) Lyft assures customers that it will continue to offer both driverless and human-piloted options for its service in the future. It also makes good business sense: Self-driving rides are expected to cost less than vehicle ownership or traditional ridesharing.

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Pak troops violate ceasefire along LoC
Jul 22, 2017 - 00:56
India and Pakistan blame each other for the ceasefire violations in which civilians from both sides have been affected. The Pakistan army pounded Indian posts and forward villages, prompting India to retaliate in equal measure.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Emir issues decree changing law combating terrorism
Jul 22, 2017 - 00:54
"The time has come for us to spare the people from the political differences between the governments", he said, urging dialogue. Sheikh Tamim said Qataris should become more self-reliant and called for the economy to be opened up to foreign investments.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Sunset bill passes Texas Senate during special session
Jul 21, 2017 - 01:02
Senate Bill 6 would require public high school students to use restrooms that match the gender on their birth certificates. The House should find common ground with the Senate on some key upcoming issues in coming weeks, but won't move as fast.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top What you need to know about OJ Simpson parole hearing
Jul 21, 2017 - 01:02
The former star running back was arrested when one of the most notorious vehicle chases ever was televised around the world. A parole board hearing in the USA state of Nevada is due to decide whether OJ Simpson should be released from prison.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Trump Disses Rod Rosenstein: 'He's From Baltimore'
Jul 21, 2017 - 01:00
Rosenstein also assured the Fox News host that the Department of Justice would take care of it if any conflicts of interest arose. Rosenstein sat down with Fox News Channel's Martha MacCallum for an exclusive interview and tsk-tsked Comey using legal speak.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Exxon fined $2M for Tillerson-era breach of Russian Federation sanctions
Jul 21, 2017 - 00:58
Tillerson, who has deep ties to Russian Federation and received an Order of Friendship from Moscow, left the firm to become U.S. Rosneft itself is subject to narrower US sanctions that still allow Americans to deal with the company on some transactions.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Pakistani Government, Opposition Expect Court Verdict on PM Sharif
Jul 21, 2017 - 00:54
Meanwhile, Justice Sheikh observed that it has been confirmed that Maryam Nawaz is the beneficial owner of London flats. Raja responded that it was possible a mistake was committed in this regard.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Saudi Arabia bars BBC reporting team from Yemen
Jul 21, 2017 - 00:54
Saudi Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told the Guardian that those figures were " vastly exaggerated ". The plane was going to bring aid workers and BBC reporters from Djibouti.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top United Nations official calls for de-escalation in tension over Al-Aqsa Mosque
Jul 21, 2017 - 00:53
The Israeli authorities later made a decision to close down Al Aqsa Mosque , causing Muslims unable to perform Friday prayers. Abbas said the moves are violating global legitimacy, according to the official Palestinian News Agency (WAFA).

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Turkey slams German statements on arrested rights activist
Jul 21, 2017 - 00:50
Nine are now in jail, including human rights activist Peter Steudtner and journalists Deniz Yucel and Mesale Tolu. It said the main reason behind the crisis was the "double standards" in Germany's stance on Turkey .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Bristol hosts ICC World Cup semi-final
Jul 20, 2017 - 01:00
South Africa were already 20-30 runs short, what made matters worse for them is the number of extras they conceded. Luus and Preez took South Africa to 218 for 6 in their 50 overs after they lost six wickets for 170.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Mercedes-Benz X-Class ute officially unveiled
Jul 20, 2017 - 01:00
Mercedes has apparently already taken several hundred reservations for the pick-up, despite no official confirmation on pricing. Mercedes-Benz finally unveiled the production version of the all-new X-Class bakkie ( pickup ) to the world.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Beaufort Securities Reaffirms Buy Rating for ASOS plc (LON:ASC)
Jul 20, 2017 - 00:59
After $1.13 actual EPS reported by EVRAZ plc for the previous quarter, Wall Street now forecasts -21.24% negative EPS growth. In other news, insider David Lockhart sold 12,000 shares of the firm's stock in a transaction on Friday, July 7th.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Nintendo Switch's online app is available for your phone now
Jul 20, 2017 - 00:59
It's also a useful introduction to the controls of the game, which have retained the motion controls from the original. Nintendo announced previously that the company's online app would launch on July 21, the release date for Splatoon 2 .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Redskins, Kirk Cousins unable to reach contract extension
Jul 19, 2017 - 00:58
Washington could use the franchise tag for an unprecedented third year, but at the cost of almost $35.4 million. Cousins earned the eighth-highest overall grade among NFL quarterbacks last season from Pro Football Focus .