Waymo he said Wednesday
that the new funding came from Alphabet, venture capital firms, sovereign wealth funds, and automotive companies. Alphabet led the round and the rating was not disclosed. Waymo CEOs Tekedra Mawakana and Dmitri Dolgov said in a blog post
that the funding would be used to expand the company’s equipment and improve its technology.
Waymo has worked to market cars with automatic driving whenever anyone wants. Much progress has been made, such as giving a trip to a passenger in 2015
, before competitors. He was also the first to launch an automatic driving service, which is active today in Chandler, Arizona.
But Waymo, like the entire auto-driving industry, has not faced any shortcomings. Companies like General Motors and Ford have lost their launch targets and disappointed with results
and, in one case, an Uber-made auto-driving prototype killed a pedestrian. (Uber has been doing this since sold
its autonomous car division.)
he saw a Waymo van driving automatically in a video stranded on an Arizona highway and drove away when a Waymo worker arrived to help him. The embarrassing incident referred to the challenge of making self-driving vehicles that would drive gracefully and reliably in all circumstances. The passenger in the Waymo van told CNN Business that if you really need to arrive on time, don’t take a Waymo yet.
[[Waymo, like many self-driving companies, has shifted some of its focus to long-haul trucking, as autonomous vehicle experts say it’s much easier to drive on highways because there aren’t pedestrians, cyclists or crossing traffic.
Last week, Waymo announced a partnership with the trucking company JB Hunt to move goods between Houston and Fort Worth, Texas. Waymo has said it will do multiple runs over the coming weeks but hasn’t shared how many trucks will be involved. Waymo will have two workers on the truck, including one in the driver’s seat.
John Krafcik stepped down as Waymo’s CEO this spring
after nearly six years at the company. He said he’d remain as an advisor to the company.
In 2018, Krafcik and Waymo struck a deal with Fiat Chrysler to add up to 62,000 Pacifica Hybrid minivans to Waymo’s fleet. But that fleet today, three years later, remains at only 700 vehicles.