The Chinese capital lagged somewhat behind selected regions of the country in terms of allowing unmanned taxis on the streets, which were allowed to carry out commercial transportation of passengers without a safety driver behind the wheel. Testing of the service in Beijing began in December last year, but now automatic taxis are allowed to carry passengers for a fee through the territory of one of the Chinese capital’s industrial parks. The presence of a driver behind the wheel is not provided.
Back in August, the operation of automatic taxis was launched in Chongqing and Wuhan, where the Apollo subsidiary of the Chinese Internet giant Baidu also handled transportation. Five autopilot-equipped vehicles in each of the cities ran along certain routes at limited time intervals. Based on the results of the first months of testing, representatives of Baidu said that automatic taxis are no less popular than human-driven ones.
The Beijing Technopark becomes the third location in China where Baidu’s subsidiary is officially allowed to carry out commercial passenger transportation using automated vehicles. Many technology companies are developing their own means of automatically driving cars, Waymo came out of a similar Google initiative at one time, Yandex conducted its experiments for some time, and Baidu’s activities show that the Chinese competitor is not going to lag behind foreign Internet giants in this area. .
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